Updated June 29, 2023
A career change refers to a powerful shift in a person’s employment course, transitioning from one occupation or field to another.
Career change is when one changes or jumps to other career avenues or job opportunities. A career is an important aspect of one’s life. It indirectly influences the lifestyle of a person and their family and determines the individual’s future. One should consult and talk to family, friends, and mentors before making a major career-related decision. Hasty and unplanned choices can lead to a disaster.
The reasons for career change differ from person to person. But the decision broadly can be influenced by the following factors:
- One’s desire to earn a higher income; and acquire enhanced benefits and incentives.
- Want to get better appreciation and recognition.
- Stress at work and the feeling of getting exploited.
- Lack of flexible work options.
- To attain better personal and professional growth opportunities.
- Disinterest in work due to lack of interpersonal skills, motivation, and inspiration.
- Lack of job satisfaction.
- Inadequate work environment data-preserver-spaces=”true”>, workplace politics, and damaged coworker relationships.
- If the job they are involved in is drying up or that field is becoming extinct.
- To avoid stagnancy, enhance creativity , and take up new challenges.
- To fulfill a dream or mission.
- Interest in a new upcoming industry or job which better suits you in terms of your passion, personality, and skills.
- The desire to do something more meaningful professionally.
- To start one’s own venture.
- Change in the family circumstances and situations.
There is a time when we all feel that we need new challenges in our profession. We may feel frustrated with what we are doing currently, and other career options may appear much more lucrative and productive. In such a situation, you have to decide whether you want to go for a career change. If yes, you must analyze whether you need a new job at another organization or wish to change your career completely. To decide upon this aspect, you need to answer these questions:
How satisfied are you with your current career?
- Whether you enjoy the challenge you confront in your current career?
- Have you been able to conquer these challenges?
- Are you satisfied with the promotion and recognition given for your talents and efforts?
- Have you achieved an income that takes care of your needs?
- Have you earned respect and appreciation from your colleagues, superiors, and clients?
- Do you like the work environment you work in?
- Have you made an impression or impact within the organization and your colleagues?
- Whether you get the feeling of job satisfaction in what you do?
- Have you been able to develop professional and personal skills and expertise with your work?
Is It the Right Time for Career Change
- Do your financial modeling allow you for a career or job change now?
- Is it the right time to join another organization?
- Are your family situations suitable to enable you for a career or job change?
- Is it the right time to change the track of your career?
- Are you equipped with the experience and qualifications to take over another career or job?<
One should decide upon the need for a career or job change by analyzing the answers to these questions.
How to Swap Careers?
Once you firmly decide that you require a career change. You need to consider the following things before making the final decision:
1. Likes and Dislikes
In most cases, people want to swap careers because they dislike their job, superiors, work environment, or company. Before going in for a career change, identify your likes and dislikes. For example, what field interests you, what do you like doing the best at home or in your free time, what are the things that excite and motivate you and what are you passionate about?
After you are sure about your likes and passion, take time to do some research on the various careers that match your desires and passion. You can get information about the type of careers from the internet, career books and so on. Take time to introspect which areas will suit you best in terms of your passion, personality, and experience.
3. Analyse skills
It is very important to link the skills and personal assets you possess with the type of career you are planning to change to. These skills will include the type of communication skills, leadership and management skills, interpersonal skills, and the skills you have attained through your education and previous job experiences. Analyze whether they match the job descriptions and job specifications you plan to change.
4. Training and Education
You will sometimes find that some jobs require a certain type of training, diploma, or degree apart from your current skills. You’d want to opt for them as they would be essential to determine your success in the new field. Then you must undergo this training and acquire the degrees before swaying careers.
5. Develop a Network
When considering a career change, getting advice and suggestions from your friends, family, or colleagues is always better. They can provide you with a lead about jobs and information about various companies working in that field, or they can introduce you to people looking for candidates like you to join their company, and so on.
In certain conditions, you may find your experience insufficient for the job you want to swap to. In this case, start some part-time job or intern for jobs that match your desired position. This will enhance your experience and knowledge about that field.
7. Change In or Out
You don’t need to swap careers outside the organization if everything goes positively. It is always better to look within your company, whether there are jobs that suit your passion, experience, and caliber. But you can opt for other companies if things do not go your way. If you can identify one, try talking to your seniors about wanting to join that particular position or department.
8. Job Hunting
When planning to change careers, one must update oneself about the current job hunting scenario and basics. One should know how to search for a job, update one’s resume according to the job one seeks, present and prepare themselves for interviews, and so on.
Common Mistakes While You Change Career
The career change process should be well-planned and analyzed. Do not be in a hurry to make the decision. Keep the following things in mind to avoid any type of problems and catastrophe in the future:
1. Career Change without a Plan
Attempting to swap careers without appropriate planning can be disastrous. One should be patient with the process as it may take a while. One should have an action plan, including strategies, research, financial condition, education, and experience. Based on the action plan, one must analyze which job suits them.
2. Career vs. Job<
Sometimes we are confused about whether we dislike our job or chosen career. Most people take both things as one, but both are different aspects. When discussing a job, the following things matter- work environment, seniors’ attitude, etc. And when we talk about career, these things matter- activities involved in the career, skills required, and so on. Therefore one should be sure what he wants to change before deciding.
3. Career Change Based on Benefits
While changing their careers, most people only focus on whether the new job would give higher income and benefits. They forget that job satisfaction is important for career growth. If the person does not like or enjoy what he has to do, his performance level decreases, leading to stress and frustration.
4. Career Change Due to Pressure
Many people change careers under the pressure of their family, spouse, or peers. They force him to choose a particular career for the high income, benefits, and position. But one forgets that if one does not enjoy his work, he will not be able to progress professionally or personally.
5. Career Change by Hasty Decision Making
Sometimes one tends to jump into a new job just because it is trending or provides certain benefits. One fails to consider other aspects like whether he is passionate about what he has to do, whether he possesses the required skills and qualifications, whether there will be opportunities available to grow professionally, whether he can work environment, and so on.
6. Career Change by Aping Others
Many people opt for a certain career; just because they see others prosper. They go for it because their relatives and friends are earning well. One forgets whether he is suitable for that job or whether he will be able to succeed and prosper like those he is indirectly influenced by.
7. Career Change based on Inadequate Skills and Experience
Many people switch jobs without taking into consideration the experience and qualifications they possess. Certain jobs require certain qualifications, training, and experience. If one does not possess them, one will have difficulty attaining professional success.
In today’s high-profile and demanding society, a career indirectly affects or determines one’s lifestyle, position, and recognition in the community, shaping a person’s future. With the growing economy and increase in opportunities in the job market, it is common to swap careers. People not only prefer to change jobs and organizations, but they change the complete track of their careers. Changing one’s career is influenced by several aspects, such as job satisfaction, better lucrative opportunities, high-level appreciation and recognition, increased increments and promotions, family and peer pressure, etc.
The career change process is sensitive, and one needs to consider and analyze many things before making the final decision. One needs to decide whether he needs a change in job or career. Determine whether it is the right time to swap careers. One needs to introspect upon his passion and mission, analyze skills, qualifications, experience, personality type, and whether they suit the job or career they desire to take over. One needs to consider what the new job expects from him, whether he will be able to adjust to the new work environment and the responsibilities of the position, will the new avenue allow personal and professional growth, and so on.