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How to Create a Career Change Action Plan

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You spend the majority of your waking life at work. It only makes sense to pursue a career that makes you feel happy and fulfilled as much as possible. Sometimes, this means that in order to be satisfied in your job, you’ll need to consider changing paths from time to time. Even if you were excited by your role when you first took on your current job, a time might come when you decide it’s time for something new. People change, and their professional goals can evolve over time. You might even decide it’s time to switch tracks if you feel like you’re not earning enough, or there aren’t enough opportunities waiting in your future. Of course, changing jobs can be a complex and daunting prospect. That’s why it’s so important to have an action plan in place before you dive in.

Decide Why You’re Changing Jobs

First, you’ll need to think about why you want to change roles in the first place. If you’re just unhappy with something temporary in your current position, like a bad colleague, you might consider staying in the same place for a little longer, particularly if you love every other part of your job. Writing down your why’s will give you a clear view of whether a change in roles the right thing for you is right now. It should also help you to prioritize what you want to look for when you start searching for a new position. If you’re unhappy with the current culture at your workplace, you might look for a company with values similar to yours.

Assess Your Strengths and Passions

Next, it’s time to think about where your new career path might take you. A good way to begin here is to look at your professional strengths. What kind of things are you good at, and what skills do you already have which might lend themselves towards specific roles? If you don’t want a role in the same industry you’re working in right now, consider your passions and what makes you happy. Make a list of the things you really enjoy in life, and the talents you already possess. From there, you can begin searching for potential jobs which might make sense to your situation. If you’re passionate about technology and math, you could become a data analyst. If you feel strongly about enriching future generations, jobs working with children might be best for you.

Even if you were excited by your role when you first took on your current job, a time might come when you decide it’s time for something new. People change, and their professional goals can evolve over time.Click To Tweet

Plan for Your Education

If you’re moving into a new industry, or you want to pursue a role which requires a different skillset than the one you have today, you might need to update your education. Sometimes, you’ll be able to take basic courses while you start working for a new company, or leverage lessons that are accessible online. In other situations, you may need to consider going back to college. If you’re going to be going to college to earn a new degree, then you’ll need to plan for how you’re going to pay for your education. A flexible loan from Earnest Student loans could be the ideal solution if you want to make sure you can manage the costs of your education over time.

Start Developing Experience

Either while you’re in the midst of getting your education, or soon after, you should be looking for ways to get experience related to your new role. There are various ways you can do this. You could offer your services as a freelancer online to expand your knowledge of the industry, or volunteer for a company related to your field. You might also look into internships and lower paid entry level jobs connected to the role you want, so you can start working your way towards a position more tailored to your expertise. The more experience you can develop, the more compelling your resume will be.

Start Networking

Who you know will always be important when you’re applying for any new role in a business, or industry. With this in mind, it’s worth looking for ways to expand your professional networkwherever you can. You can begin by attending industry events, both online and in person. This will both give you a chance to learn more about your sector, and meet new people. If you’re not ready to start interacting with other professionals offline just yet, you can look into online networking options instead. You can join forums related to your sector, find groups on LinkedIn and Facebook, and connect with those over social media. While starting a new career can be a challenging and stressful process, it can also be a fantastic way to ensure you’re getting the most out of your professional life.

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