Whether it’s by chance, choice or sheer survival purposes, professionals are changing careers each day. Switching careers can be daunting as you are leaving an area you are comfortable and familiar with and venturing into uncharted territory. Although a career change can be a pivotal moment in your life, it might leave you financially unstable for a brief period. This might pose issues too, if you are no longer have benefits such as employee insurance. During this time, you may have to make a small dent into your savings account. It is best to prepare yourself for possible obstacles and challenges ahead by doing research on your prospective career, knowing more about the industry, and taking classes that can allow you to work well in your new field.
Below are tips to help you learn how to survive a career change:
Establish your goals and objectives
One of the most important steps is to spend time determining what you really want and what specific skills you have to offer. Successfully completing a ‘career assessment’ is a great building block and foundation. Ensure that it is done thoroughly to to minimize spending time and money moving into something that doesn’t suit you. An assessment should basically cover your personal skills, values as well as other areas which are unique to you (income expectations, location, etc).
Research options against your criteria
With the details from step one, you can easily draw up a job ‘evaluation matrix’ to think of and then consider your possible options. Armed with particular questions you can start your research online, and then progress to finding people working in the fields you are considering. By making the necessary preparations, you will be able to decrease the stress involved in learning new things while performing at your best. In addition, your abilities to take charge and get the job done can make an excellent impression on your new employers, thus improving your chances of successfully climbing up the corporate ladder.
You never know who can help you
If networking brings up images of cheap white wine and also insincere smiles you should think deeply. Networking in job is the lifeblood of new careers, business and…. well, pretty much everything! People help those they have been with, like and trust them – so your close friends and family are the first people to let know how they can assist you. You never know who your best friend’s sister might sit next to on a train. People generally love to help people they care about.
Consider past careers
Sometimes changing the environment you work in or the boss you work for is adequate to satisfy you without embarking totally on a drastic career change. For this reason, it’s crucial you run your old jobs through the ‘evaluation matrix’. This will as well help you think of options that are in the same ‘job family’.
Accept that career change takes time and you may need to take several steps to get where you want to be. Don’t keep on waiting until you reach at breaking point for you to finally react. For some cases, a career change might mean a reduction in pay, so remember you may need to plan for this and budget accordingly.
Ensure that you save when you can
Though you might be changing your career, you should understand that life after retirement awaits you. Consequently, the retirement contributions you have been making in the past should not be ignored for such contributions help grow your retirement fund. Instead of rolling over your 401(k), you should leave it in place. Basically, investing in 401(k), having a small company group health insurance cover as your employee insurance and finally investing in a savings account should be some of your goals when transitioning from one career to another. You can also opt to open an IRA and try to keep contributing there while going through the career switch.
Change is the one true constant in life. When approaching any change, be prepared to look at things differently than the way you may be accustomed to. Approach every day with the intentions of learning something new to advance yourself in your new career and continue to reach for growth. Always take the successes and achievements you’ve had in other areas of your life and carry them into your new career. Continue to believe in yourself despite the unfamiliarity of your new surroundings. Remember, you’ll be encroaching into someone else’s world and they may be threatened. Keep your eye on the horizon and your mind on the prize. Break that barrier, no matter what it is.
Sourced from: Time
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