Changing careers. Fifteen letters. It takes less than one second to say it but to successfully make the transition it will take more the minutes, hour, days or even months. This is not something you can quickly accomplish on a whim unless you are lucky.
If you are thinking about changing careers, the first question you need to ask yourself is whether you are running from something or to something. The second question is whether you have the determination to make the change. Like anything else in life, it will require some work.
Good Time to Change Careers
The good news is that if you want to make a change, this is the time to do it: companies are engaged in a war for the best talent. For most industries, save a few like healthcare services, there are more jobs available than there are qualified applicants. More than 6 million jobs went unfilled last month.
Your ability to make this sort of professional and life change requires more than desire. In this digital world where social media sites like LinkedIn play outsized roles, it requires a determined mindset and a career transition plan.
Here are three key actions to consider:
1. Understand your brand. This is all about how people see you today in terms of your strengths and successes.
2. What is your value proposition (VP)? You must understand that essential aspect of who you are and be able to communicate that message in a compelling way. Defining your VP will help guide your career transition strategy from field A to field B.
3. You will need to customize your resume – This is not as hard as it sounds — to show how the skills you have perfected in a field, say Construction Project Management, can add value to a human resources (HR) department, for example. That process begins when you submit your resume to a potential HR employer. Your resume is your FIRST interview and if you do not have a professional summary that quickly shows that you have transferable skills, you will not make the first cut. You must connect the dots for them. Do not depend on what one senior executive once said in frustration, when he was told he had been eliminated: “They should be able to figure it out for themselves.” Nice try, but what would you want to depend on the initiative or insight of someone you have never met?
Is finding a job hard work? Yes, but in many industries now there is a demand for talent. Healthcare, along with some aspects of retail, communications and the media are the exceptions but overall it is a job seekers market. However, you still have to be prepared.
TAKEAWAY: If you sit back and let potential employers to discover for themselves your transferable skills and the real value you can bring to a job, then it might happen, but it will take a long time. This is not rocket science stuff. Find a coach you trust. The cost will vary. Find someone who will work with you on fees. Take command of your brand.
Special Note: Thank you for your comments and posts. As you know, I also post daily quotes for my followers on Facebook, LinkedIn Instagram and Twitter. I hope you enjoy them. It is one of the highlights of my weekend — to spend time reflecting on how people seem to be feeling about their work, their careers, and their lives and then look for quotes that will inspire and make people smile. It is rooted in my philosophy of networking — to give, to serve.
© 2019 John Gregory Self