Need a career change, or just bored? The rewards are worth the risk if you are strategic
Working in executive search, I see many people wanting to change career paths or shift industries. I always ask the question: Will it help you to achieve your goals?
Before making a career move, you should be certain that you are not merely bored in your current role.
I would argue that, if possible, it is better to seek out challenging projects or new responsibilities within your current field before making drastic changes.
Before you decide, you should ask yourself the following questions:
● Are my skills transferable to a new role or industry?
● l How well will I adapt to change?
● l Will this stall my career progression, as I need to learn about a new industry?
● l What sacrifices, both personally and professionally, are likely to be made?
Once you’ve decided to make the move, it may be best to use your personal network to introduce you to influencers in other fields who could potentially provide a foot in the door at the companies you are interested in.
Find out which industries you’d like to target, bearing in mind the sectors where you could best leverage your existing knowledge and experience.
You should also focus on companies known for innovation and change.
If you do need to gain new skills, start by training or studying in preparation for the job-hunt.
When you start interviewing, be ready to explain why you want to change, and be prepared for some knock-backs and rejections — but don’t give up.
Most importantly, get ready to leave your comfort zone. Change is never easy, but if you are confident in your skills and prepared to challenge norms, it is attainable — and usually worth the risk.
This article appeared in the Classified Post print edition as How to switch fields.