Deciding if you want to change industries
As you discover more about yourself and what is fulfilling work for you, you also need to define ways you are changing career paths. There are some who career change means starting in a completely new industry or just and adjacent, while some involve finding a new occupation in the same industry.
Let’s say someone is working as an advertising sales rep for a TV network. That person can use their sales skills and get a job working as a donor relations manager for a nonprofit. This is because they would be using applicable occupational skills to change their career from broadcasting to nonprofit.
Let’s now say that the donor relations manager position was for a health care nonprofit and the one being replaced secured a job as a controller for a hospice service. It means that the one being replaced remained in the health and personal care industry but just changed their occupation.
When you want to decide what is best for you, you have to use your personal inventory to decide the industries and occupations that best meet your needs.
If you want to be more informed about career options, it is a good idea to brainstorm the jobs and industries that might be a good fit for your skills and values. Data science, education, health services and hospitality jobs are popular career choices. If you are having a hard time finding a career that fits your needs, then you should consider asking others in your professional network. Career counseling can also help you because you will be able to learn about your personality and where it fits in today’s workforce.
You should use resources like Indeed to look at potential careers before listing them down and researching. You need to take this step before you start researching so it narrows your career focus.
Researching potential job matches
When you narrow down to a few job types, you can begin to do in-depth research. A good way of learning more about a field of interest is by conducting interviews with those in that field. You can start with those people you know or check out your college alumni association.
You can also check out BLS and see their employment projections because it will help you know the fastest-growing job fields. Indeed Salaries has the top-paying jobs and companies by industry.
Making an action plan
If you want to create an action plan, you should clearly define your goals and milestones. You have done the research at this point and you most likely have narrowed down your career change to a few occupations. The next step is considering what it is going to take to get there.
This includes things like skills development, education, and certification, taking opportunities to practice in a given field of industry, and attending networking events. Note down the steps that you plan on taking and a timeline to do it.
Before you begin applying for jobs, you should undergo some personal rebranding. If you are looking for a job, you need to use resources like a cover letter, resume, and social profiles to create a personal brand that will make sense to employers. This becomes even more important when changing careers because your current experience might not align with the desired goals without a little planning.
You should consider how existing experiences make you a good candidate for the role you want to apply for, then use that to make a powerful statement so that you can be seen as a good fit for the job. You also need to update your business cards, contact info, and personal website so it reflects your new brand.
Using your network
You should be mindful of the position and industry you are interested in when selecting the contacts to reach out to. Talk to professionals you believe are going to put a good word and let you know of any opportunities. You can do it on phone or via text, or even a note on social media or a referral email.
Look for opportunities to volunteer, job shadow, or intern. This is going to help you decide whether the field or industry you are interested in is a good fit for you. You will also gain experience that can make you stand out from the rest.