Have you decided it’s time for a change in careers? Is it because you are bored, tired of the drudgery? Fed up with low pay? Do you have skills or talents you would like to put to use? Have you gone as far as you can in your current company and decided it’s not far enough to suit you? Whatever your reason, changing careers is a big decision.
Some people approach this decision with trepidation and stress. Others jump into it without thought. Either approach can lead to disaster. Changing careers can be the opportunity of a lifetime with the right preparation and outlook. Avoid the following pitfalls to career change and you’ll be well on your way to that new career.
Changing Careers without a Plan
Spontaneous decisions are the bedrock of disappointment when it comes to career change. A successful change can sometimes involve months of preparation. You may need to take some classes to acquire skills you are lacking. You will need to network, punch up your resume and research the industry or companies you are interested before you make a move. Quitting one job and taking the first job offer that comes along can land you in sad situation.
Changing Careers for Money or Benefits
Many single parents are tempted to do this because they believe it will put them in a better position to be able to provide for their families. Remember that big money often comes with lots of stress and long hours. You may not be happy at such a job and it could result in you spending the extra money on child care and stress relief.
You Hate Your Job
When you hate your job so intensely that you have to fight with yourself to go to work every day, it is a sure sign there is a serious problem. However, the problem may not be with your career. Perhaps it is with the boss or the structure of the company. You may be perfectly suited to the type of work you are doing but need a different environment. Don’t chuck it all until you are sure about what is causing your distress.
Changing Jobs without a Thorough Self-assessment
Sometimes the decision to move on is a longtime in coming. Once it arrives, we are ready to leap into a new life and don’t take enough time to adequately assess ourselves. A self-assessment that includes a comprehensive look at strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats (SWOT) can better prepare you to make sound decisions. It will give you a better understanding of what you are capable and enable you to market yourself, your skill set and talents to prospective employers.
Changing Jobs without Having the Necessary Training or Experience
Though you may believe in yourself wholeheartedly; though you are convince you can learn anything new quickly, you may not have the skills to step into your new chosen career filed. It is a good idea to bridge the gap between your existing skills with the new ones you’ll need before making the change. Take some courses, attend a seminar or take an online class to help you pick up the skills you need to make the transition happen more smoothly.