career

4 Steps to Make a Career Change

career changeAre you one of those people who always want something more? I am – or at least I used to be. I was always looking for the next best thing, new ways to make money and bigger accomplishments to achieve.

Every time I start a new venture my dad tells me “That’s the one thing I lacked at your age. I wish I had ambition.” Maybe it’s a generational quality or maybe it’s just a personal quality, either way my ambition has lead to two different career changes – and both of them were in my 30s. Isn’t that exciting!

I’m not sure why the world expects us to choose our life direction at the age of 18. That’s completely ridiculous and ends up costing a lot of families’ heavy tuition fees for unused degrees. I personally don’t use my university degree, but I’ve gone back to school twice since graduating the first time and still continue my education today (at 36) with conferences, workshops and online courses.

If you’re unhappy with your current career, don’t stay in a job you hate. Make changes in your life to help make a career change and find a job that you truly love.

Here are four steps to help make a career change:

Decide what you want to do

Before you can make a career change you need to figure out where you want to go and what you want to do. If you know you want to write, find out what types of jobs are available and in which industries. Wanting to write is a very broad goal, narrow it down to a specific industry such as personal finance and the types of writing you want to do such as corporate communications.

According to Forbes, planning is a big key point when deciding to change careers. “there are two important aspects to consider when you start thinking about a career change. The first is to clearly understand what you want to do; the second is to understand what the marketplace will allow you to do. You need to know what is important to the hiring managers in this new field, and what skills and experience are required. Then you need to figure out if you’ve got what it takes.”

Learn new skills

If you want to make a career change, you’ll need the skills. You may already have them or you may need to go and get them. Nowadays there are so many alternative options to traditional learning at a college or university. You can take a continuing education course at centers like The Learning Annex, you can attend industry conferences or you can enroll in online courses. If going to a traditional four-year school isn’t an option, there are other ways to learn.

Many universities offer the opportunity to study your full degree program online, such as this online school counseling degree to become a school counselor.

Get online and network

The days of walking around with an envelope full of printed resumes are gone. With the age of the internet and social media you can make connections, network and apply for jobs without ever leaving your home. I suggest using LinkedIn to look for your dream job and for the skills required for the job you want. Using social media, a great way to connect with new people, showcase your skills with your profile and learn about the job market.

Create your own dream job

It’s the age of the go-getter. Nowadays anyone with an idea, drive and Wi-Fi connection can start a business. I love it. If you’re not getting the experience and skills you want at your current job, you can create your own job by becoming an entrepreneur and starting your own business. It won’t be easy, but it will be rewarding when you wake up every day to do a job that you love.

I’m not saying to walk into your boss’ office tomorrow and give two weeks notice, but start creating an exit strategy so in a few months you can transition from working for someone else to working for yourself. In the meantime, you can start building your resume. Nowadays it’s really easy to make great looking resumes with the help of online builders.

About the author

TK

TK is a Certified Financial Planner with over 15 years of experience in the banking industry. She started blogging in 2009 after the market crash. TK enjoys helping people plan their retirement, pay off debt, invest wisely, live on a budget and enjoy happy financial lives. You can see what she's up to on Twitter @TahnyaKristina.

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