Many of us feel too driven and passionate about our jobs during the early stage of our careers. However, you might realize that the workplace you’re at isn’t what you imagine it to be, making you think about a career change. Reasons vary but typically revolve around dissatisfaction about the working environment or the company itself.
While the idea of a career change might sound exciting, it is, in fact, a big step that can make or break your current situation. To guide you, we’ve compiled some top mistakes to avoid when making a career change.
Making a rash decision
For someone who felt stuck in their current job and has no chance or time for a change, you probably hate your career right now. You’re thinking of running as far away as possible, assuming you will find a new professional identity that you think you deserve.
But running away from your current situation without improving is actually a bad idea. Find your voice, become more competent, and grow your skills. Fix what’s broken before leaving because if not, achieving the next level of success will be nearly impossible. Everything will just be repeated; think of it as the pendulum effect.
Deciding based on salary alone
Selecting a new career shouldn’t be only based on earning potential. Being financially strategic is necessary for a career change but doesn’t mean you’ll choose a high-paying job that does not match your values, interests, or interests. Apart from compensation, you should also evaluate other aspects such as room for growth and work-like balance.
Check if your prospective employer offers the necessary employee benefits such as health insurance, retirement, or pension plans, as well as vacation or paid time off. Basing your decisions on other important factors will enable you to be both professionally and financially fulfilled in the long run.
Leaving without a new job lined up
Take note of this: research shows that gaps in resumes can be a deciding factor for a hiring manager to call you for an interview or accept you for the job. If you want it to be easier for you to get a new job, apply while you’re still employed. That’s the accepted wisdom when it comes to a career change.
Having no backup plan will make the journey harder for you. Some acceptable reasons you can quit a job without a backup are if you are really planning to take a break and have your financial plan all set. Be proactive and network your way through a better career rather than reactive or going with the flow.
Skipping self-evaluation and proper research
Career change is something that requires preparation to guarantee success. Not preparing can hurt your career in the long run. Do some self-evaluation and research first. What specific career are you trying to achieve, and how long will it be? What do you need to do and sacrifice to reach it? What are you passionate about? What makes you happy at work?
Most importantly, assess your strengths and weaknesses and your transferable skills. What unique skills can you bring to the table? Do you have what it takes to achieve your desired career path? What should you improve? Digging deep in yourself will prepare you for venturing into your new career journey.
Having no financial plan
Many professionals jump from one job to another without money, either accessible through revenues or in their bank accounts. Most of them have no idea how long the transition will take and got no funds to support themselves. Take note that you can’t possibly go from earning $80,000 in your last job and get the same salary in your new career without making an effort and time. Before taking a leap, make it a habit to save, do some side-gig, or seek external support from family or friends if you need to.
Listening to external factors
Most individuals nowadays based their life decisions on external factors. Some people want to change their current job because the friend does too, or someone told them that their skills would fit another industry.
You should be the one responsible for changing your career, your desire. Going on a new career path just because somebody tells you so won’t get you anywhere. Choose a job you have passion for, makes you happy, and fulfills your personal development and financial needs.
You always have the power to when or how you are going to make a career change. But if you want to avoid jumping from a bad career to another, spend time to prepare and do your research. If you learn about the industry, evaluate your desires, and improve your skills, you’ll make the right decision.