CHANGING CAREERS / DEC. 31, 2014
version 2, draft 2

How to Complete Career Transition Successfully

Transition between careers is harder than a job change because it involves moving to a new industry. Career change can result in major disruptions in your finances, social life and family. People often opt for career changes due to boredom in their current position, downsizing, or better opportunities in a different industry. Proper planning and completing the right steps can curb any negative impact and help you to reap the benefits more.

Complete a Self-Assessment

The first step towards any transition is to establish who you are, where you are and where you want to go. If you are transitioning due to boredom, you will need to dig deeper within and find out what fulfills you. Change is only rewarding if it is meaningful. It is, therefore, paramount that you don’t jump on any new opportunity just for the sake of moving. Make use of the easily available assessment instruments and exercises online to clarify your interests, personal style, knowledge, and abilities. Use a professional career consultant to do this if you can afford, or a mentor.

Explore Your Options

Once you identify the type of job and industries that interest you, it is time to explore your options on how to accomplish the mission. Study the requirements, challenges, and trends in your career of choice. Local newspapers, career journals, recruitment agencies magazines, and other trade publications in your field of interest will prove helpful. Speak to people in the area to have an idea of the real situation being in your new career of interest.

Design Your Plan

After you put together what you have learned, set goals and objectives for your new career journey. Map out a strategy to fulfill them and for a job search. Narrow down your options and ensure they align with your best skills. Update your skills and resume, list and contact your networks, and speak to recruitment agencies. Use your transferable skills to market yourself. Start planning for resignation if you haven’t left your job. Use a journal or any other record-keeping system to track your progress and shortfalls.

Make Appropriate Adjustments

Once you have signed a new job offer, managing the last step of a transition well is critical. Prepare for your new position by studying the organization and job expectations. Continue building on your skills and keep your ears open for better opportunities. Other adjustments such as moving to another city, going back to school and fitting in with new colleagues may appear insignificant, but how well you do them counts to your overall success.

Career change is not an easy move. Take your steps one at a time and give yourself sufficient time to internalize and manage the changes. A career change could mean less money and time, more travel or professional demands. It could also mean moving away from your location and leaving your friends, going back to school or doing entirely new tasks. It is important that you critically think the decision over and make appropriate preparations to ease complications that come with change.


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