There is something about the new season that brings about a lot of transition. For me, the feeling and motivation that I get during New Years starts all over again when the sun comes back out and the flowers begin to bloom. Getting rid of the winter blues and packing away the bulky clothing are fun and easy acts of transitioning. But what about the changes that require some intense thought? The decisions that can potentially alter your finances, lifestyle and career are the ones that require some advice and personal reflection.
There are two types of individuals that face career transitions:
- People who are sure about the career/industry they want to transition in to
- People who are not sure of the type of work they want to transition in to
Each individual still needs to go through a process to ensure that the decision they make is both correct and timely. Let’s be honest, the state of the job market here in the US is not great. Even if the career you wish to transition in to is seeking employees, the process to secure your dream job can be exhausting and may require a lot of time. But considering the decision to transition out of one industry to another adds on additional effort on your part and may require you to evaluate some key questions such as:
- What skills are transferrable to this new position and company?
- Do I need to re-write my resume?
- Is the salary in my desired field the same, more or less than what I’m making now?
- What is the promotion culture at this new position/company?
- Do I need additional education in order to apply for this job?
- Does my dream job or position require me to stay in my location or to move?
Here is some advice that will help you shape your career transition process:
1. Know thy Self – The Importance of Self-Assessment
If you are in your late 20s/early 30s, there is no time to waste. Understanding what you are best at (based on passion, education or work history) and how to transition those skills in to a new job should be the main priority. Jotting down a list of key skills and list of your hobbies and passions are great ways to evaluate you as a person and how you will fit into the workforce. It’s important to also keep in mind that this evaluation process may lean you towards creating your own career with you as a boss.
provides good resources for you to gain some insight on the various occupational groups. Here you will be able to generally track salary, job summaries and education needed to apply across many industries.
In addition to knowing yourself, it is also important to understand who you are as an employee. Birkman International is an organization that helps the workforce narrow down their behavior and the perception one has of themselves versus how others may perceive them. They provide a free online assessment and custom report that will help narrow down your work personality: .
2. Industry and Company Selection
The assessment will help you decide if your career aspirations match your skillsets and interests. There are situation where many people have to pick a career based on its immediate availability and that’s ok! But if you do have the opportunity to work towards obtaining the career of your dreams, narrowing down that industry and company is beneficial during your process. Start by figuring what companies you admire and research if they match your interests.
3. Position Selection
The position you aim to fill needs to be careful selected. Be honest with yourself. Based on the job description understand if you can fulfill those requirements. Requirements may come in the form of daily duties, managerial oversight, communication between multiple departments or people, submitting various assignment, etc. Choosing a position may also come with the requirement of additional education. Ask yourself if you have the needed background to set you a part from other candidates.
Most work requirements may come from on the job training (understanding company culture or internal technology) while others are required to get the job.
4. Re-Build Your Career History
At this point you have evaluated your skillset and passions, chosen the industry and position you identify with and the next logical step is to take those components to update your documentation: the resume and the cover letter. Creating and updating a resume and cover letter is probably one of the most tedious parts of this process. There are so many nuances needed for it to be considered great. Outdated and irrelevant career documents can create setbacks when it comes to the job-hunting process. In order to avoid that, lets look at some ways to gain some help.
Career centers at your location university (if you are tackling the crazy life of school and work) will provide a level of face-to-face assistance that cannot be obtained online. If your main resource is your handy laptop and smart phone here are some amazing websites that can provide writing tips to enhance your documents before submission
5. The Submission Process
The submission process is often referred to as “The Black Hole; you submit your resume and it mysterious gets lost in the World Wide Web. Every company now requires you to submit your job application online. Our generation was born and raised on the Internet and the number of job submissions is growing by the second.
Understanding the way in which each company accepts application is so important. For example, small startups and large corporation may have a different process. Some may require digital resumes with a personal portfolio others may be more traditional and require to complete a profile and simply upload your documents.
We are in this together! When thinking about careers, you should always strive to get better at your craft. These pieces of advice should set the stage for you to finally make the decision to take control of your work life. Even though it may take a little extra hard work and time, we encourage you to continue to make 2015 an awesome a year![/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]