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Making a Career Change
By ResumeOttawa.ca Staff Writer
What should you do when you are seeking a career change? There are experts in Ottawa willing to tell you what to do or advise you on a process. For a price that is. There are self-help books and then there is the internet with many articles like this one.
There are some very basic steps you should take if you want to make a career change, some of which depend on your current situation and some do not. There are also some mistakes that others have made along this road that we can learn from as well.
Things to Do
• Realizing your dreams. The first thing you need to do is discover what it is you want to do if you make a career change. Dig deep and be sure you are chasing the right dream. Ask yourself the right questions. What is it that makes you feel really alive? What do you love to do? What gives meaning to your life? Answer these questions before you do anything else.
• Building a foundation for a change. Now there are new questions to ask yourself. You know what you want to do. Start to make a list of what it will take to get you there. What resources do you need? What people do you need? Do you need additional financial assistance? List everything you can think of that would be apart of the foundation for your new dream.
• A New Network: Start building a new network. You know what your dream is. You have your foundation list. Now start contacting the people on your list. Don’t hesitate. Act.
• Build or Bolster Self-Confidence: If you were guaranteed success, what would you do? What would your dream be if you knew that failure was impossible? Now what do you have to put in place to make failure impossible? What do you have to do to make your dream come true?
Things to Avoid
• Don’t let fear distract you. Anyone who has ever tried to change careers knows that there is a lot of fear involved. It is normal. It can even be useful if it tells you the real possible pitfalls in your plans. However if it is just aimless fear, it will do more harm than good. Ask yourself if it is telling you anything or if it is just a reaction. Make a list of the risks your fear is warning about and analyze each one on its merits.
• It’s Not About Money. When I was an Executive Recruiter I learned that career moves for the best people in their fields, was never about the money. Money was never the #1 reason for a move, but it was ALWAYS in the top 5. If you are changing careers for the money, think long and hard. Will you enjoy the new career or just the money? You will spend more time working than spending money so don’t make this change all about the money.
• Don’t make a change without recruiting a new mentor. Your old mentor can help
you but you will need a new one for the new changes. Certainly do not go it alone. You need support and you need a mentor with information in the field that you want to move into. Build an entirely new network of people who can help you in your new field.
Changing your career IS a big deal and you need all the help and support you can get.
Follow these dos and don’ts and you will come out ok.