Taking the leap from one company to another can be stressful. Even if you are jumping into a position that is similar to the one you’re working now, it can be intimidating to enter a new work environment with a brand new list of expectations. Whether this transition is for better pay, culture, or working conditions, finding your footing is a challenging process for anyone.
This challenge comes even more into view not only when you’re changing companies but changing careers entirely. America is full of people changing careers– from seasoned veterans in one industry looking for fresh new experiences, to twenty-somethings realizing they majored in the wrong thing. In 2021, 53% of Americans who quit their jobs were changing careers entirely.
If you’re thinking about doing the same, where do you start? Answering the question of what you want to do when you grow up is a hard task at any age– there are just so many answers to choose from. Here are a few ways you can help make the transition a smooth one:
Take Inventory of Your Current Condition
Before making a career leap, make sure your decision isn’t being influenced by any outside contributors. Ask yourself what you might change about your current situation if you had the chance. Would you seek more flexibility in your schedule? Maybe you’d change where your position fell on an org chart. Would you be happy doing a similar job if only the subject matter was different?
For some, a toxic work environment might be a key motivator when seeking a career change. Often, this can extinguish the excitement you once held for your current line of work. If this is the case, consider seeking an environment that suits your personal preferences before ultimately deciding to transition entirely. If you haven’t previously had any work-life balance, finding a less demanding position may allow you to spend some of your spare time shadowing someone in a position you’re interested in.
If you’ve already ruled out your current line of work, don’t worry, there’s still a way forward.
Consider Your Existing Strengths
What skills do you already have that might be transferable between jobs? Some of these may help you cast a wide net. Skills like effectively handling administrative tasks, taking on customer service requests, and being able to manage and organize projects can serve as foundational skills in many kinds of careers. Digging a little deeper, you may find that some of your more specialized proficiencies qualify you for other positions. Make lists of specific software programs you’ve spent lots of time using, any certifications you hold, or certain methods you currently use to get your work done.
After pulling together a holistic list of your professional skills, begin researching jobs that utilize the tools in your arsenal. You may find that there are a lot of parallels between the work you do now and a position you’ve never even heard of before.
Get Hands-On Experience
Nowadays, just about everything can be a side hustle. In 2022, a whopping 87% of workers were willing to learn new skills to remain employable. On-demand labor apps (i.e., Veryable for logistics, warehousing, and operations positions) are a great way to get exposed to brand-new industries and work environments. Often, you’ll be able to input your skills to be able to find a variety of entry-level positions you’re qualified for. You can plan on receiving on-the-job training and guidance, and in many cases, a close-up look at what might be involved in a more advanced position. If you decide you enjoy this approach, just keep using it to upskill and get even more hands-on experience until you’re where you need to be to transition full-time.
Other options include networking with and shadowing professionals in your desired industries, taking free online classes, and doing lots of research about any prerequisites needed to take on your new career. Often, you’ll be able to find exposure to hands-on experience on your own time while still working in your current industry. This will allow you to pursue your passions and try out as many industries as you’d like to while still being able to provide a living for yourself and your family.
Know How To Market Yourself
If you’ve made it through getting to know your current strengths, and you’ve gained hands-on experience in your new industry, now is the time to combine your efforts. Now’s the time to write a killer resumé that can help guarantee a position that can meet your needs both professionally and financially.
Maybe you spent years managing a team of business development representatives, but now you’re seeking a career in design. You got some hands-on practice with design software, took on some freelance clients to build a portfolio, and now you’re ready to apply for a full-time role. Depending on the resumé you apply with, you may be able to qualify for management positions in your new industry. If this seems too daunting right off the bat, that’s fine too, but keep those skills in your back pocket for when you’re ready to knock on the door of a promotion.
Are you ready to get to work on your own terms? Sign up for Veryable today to find on-demand operations, warehousing, and manufacturing ops in your area.