People usually seek a career change for a variety of reasons. You might want less stress, more money, or more flexible hours, or perhaps you have always wanted to run your own business or turn your hobby into a career. Whatever the motivation for your career change, there are certain signs that will indicate when the time is right.
Your Job is Affecting Your Self-Esteem
A fulfilling career should be a confidence and self-esteem booster and not make you doubt either yourself or your work. Enduring a toxic workplace or a career you don’t enjoy any more can grind you down and impact your long-term mental and physical health. If that is how you are currently feeling, you need to get out now!
2. You Are Just Doing It for the Money
Working in a job that you hate but pays well is never worth the payoff. A change in career could give you the opportunity to land a job that gives you professional and personal satisfaction while still paying the bills. If you have the ‘Sunday night dread’ or must buy yourself nice things in compensation for the pain of your working life, it is time to make you move.
3. You Are Always Bored
Nobody leaps out of bed every morning desperate to get to work every day. We always have days when we feel that we have no energy and enthusiasm to be at the top of our game. If you feel like that all the time, it is likely that you have a problem. If all aspects of your job are mind-numbingly dull, you should know that the time is right to make a change.
What Are the Pros and Cons of a Career Change?
Joblist recently carried out a recent survey of people that changed careers that found that the people who switched jobs were overwhelmingly satisfied with their decision. Respondents that took the plunge expressed a range of positive outcomes, which include:
– Less Stressed:65%
– More Fulfilled:69%
– More Satisfied:75%
– Happier: 77%
In fact, 80% of survey respondents stated they wish they had made the change earlier. Still, it doesn’t mean that all that change their careers are satisfied with their decision. When asked whether they would make the switch again, 75% reported they would, 13% reported they were unsure, while 12% said no.
Here are some of the reasons why people sometimes regret changing careers:
– Stress: Finding a job in a new industry if you don’t have any relevant professional experience can prove to be much more stressful and difficult than you think.
– Trial and Error: The day-to-day reality of working in a new industry might not be what you imagine. It might take time for you to find a job that you truly enjoy.
– Financial Insecurity: Changing industries can lead to a requirement to pay for further education, a period of unemployment, or even an entry-level salary.
– Higher Stakes: If you are changing careers to start your own business, the financial and emotional investment needed may bring more worries both personally and in business
How to Choose the Right Career for You
It may feel uncertain and uncomfortable, but taking the time to think about what you really want will save you time, heartache, and effort in the long run. When it comes to a career change, the more research you do, the better decisions you can make. However, you should avoid getting trapped in the ‘analysis paralysis’ and allowing the weeks, months, or years pass you by.
Taking small but regular actions is an excellent way to get everything started and start to narrow down your options. For instance, emailing a contact that works in an industry that you are interested in or finding out about online courses you could take to give you the skills needed to make the leap are steps in the right direction.
Speaking to career advisors at the National Careers Service, talking to mentors and professional coaches, keeping an eye on life sciences trends and even getting a bit of work experience can help you cross off the possibilities and really start to focus your job search.
Tips for Career Change Success
– Evaluate Your Current Job: Take time to identify the reasons why you are not happy in your current job.
– Objectively Assess Your Skills, Interests, and Values: Think about the careers that you could be best suited to.
– Research Alternative Careers: Find out as much as you can about the job roles and industries you are interested in. LinkedIn can be an excellent resource for helping you identify and reach out to contacts in areas of interest.
– Arrange Work Experience: Nothing can give you the same level of insight as doing the job on a daily basis. Identify volunteer opportunities in your desired field or work for work experience opportunities.
– Upgrade Your Skills: Identify educational opportunities likely to help you bridge the gap between your current skills and the new careers that you are interested in. You should also try finding ways to develop your skills in your current position before making the transition.
– Write Your Career Change Resume and Cover Letter: Refocus your resume based on your new goals and write a cover letter emphasizing your transferable skills and expressing your passion for the new industry or company.