Changing Careers

A How to guide

Considering a Change: Exploring Your Options

If you are considering changing careers, exploring your options is the first way to go. The first question to ask yourself is what do you want to do? With that in mind, do you have what it takes to do that specific job? What can you offer to this company ability and skill set wise? According to notes taken in Preparing for College and Careers you have 3 paths you can take

1) Same Job, different company: you don't like your current employer, but you do like your job.

2) New Job, new company: you decide you just don't like what you're doing

3) Completely start over: do something completely different such as turn a hobby into a career

Once you have this in mind, research your job or hobby you want to turn into a career. According to Career Key, you should interview people that are already employed in that job to get an insider's view of what they do in their occupation, this is called an Informational Interview. Here are some tips on how to set up an informational interview. The Occupational Outlook Handbook is also a great tool to use when researching a career choice.

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Developing a Plan: Mapping Your Moves

Once you've found the career you're interested in, it's important to plan how you're going to get there. US News suggests that you learn new skills and knowledge that may be important to gain experience in your new career path. It also states that planning is a big step in mapping your career path. Something to take note of is editing your resumé or conducting a new one if needed. Although you may already have a resumé ready, it's best to update it if you have any skills or knowledge that you have learned since your current occupation. Here is a helpful source that can aide you in making or editing your already current or non existing resumé.
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Making the Change: Burning No Bridges

Before changing to a new job, it is important that you dont 'burn bridges' with your current employer. This includes not talking bad about them to your future employer, you might need a letter of recommendation from your current employer for your future employer and it's unlikely they'll do that if you bad mouth them. US News suggest giving your employer a 2 week notice before leaving your current job. It's best to leave on good terms with your current employer in case you want to come back to work for them if need be. Don't lose steam at work. Just because you're leaving soon doesn't mean you work any less harder or slack off at your current job. Leave a good impression! Another tip you need to know is don't tell coworkers about leaving your job until you've given notice. Popsugar suggests not to ignore your replacement, but to make them feel welcome, and ask if you can come up with a guide of job responsibilities and contacts to help them do your job just as well as you did.
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Beginning the New Journey: Showcasing Your Experience

Once you've been hired on to your new job, the first thing to do is give a good impression to your new employer. Show them you are a hard worker. AICPA suggests you be prepared. Ask your employer if there is anything else you can do to get ready for your first day. The website also suggest to be a team player. Volunteer to do extra work even if it's out of your immediate job description, make yourself indispensable by broadening your skill set and expertise. Learn the 'rules' of your new company and be a valued employee. Arrive to work and meetings on time, and don't rush out. Ask for extra hours so your employer knows you take your job seriously you're a hard worker.
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