Making a career change typically takes time, creative thinking and great support. Here are 5 tips that cover the most basic elements of success for launching a new and better career.
1. Know where you’d like to go–not just where you don’t want to be.
Often people know what they don’t want in a job, especially if it’s a current job where the boss demands way too much. But you need to find out what you do want besides the end of that problem. What positive things would you like in your career and job? What would you love to do?
2. To be creative, get a structure for your creativity. In other words, get a plan.
Just going by the seat of your pants toward some long-term vision can be fun…until you hit a big bump. Designing a business card and finding your first consulting client, for instance, may seem the quick way forward. But for long-term goals, this approach usually winds up getting you even more bogged down and confused as soon as something goes wrong. While you need to be able to jump at opportunities that arise unexpectedly, you can do that best within a basic structure. A map of your journey. A plan.
3. Add deadlines to the plan (or lifelines to pull you forward).
Plans go nowhere without clear timelines, even if you need to constantly adjust them. They give you perspective, create order, hold you accountable. In some ways it’s like college or high school. You didn’t study for the test until the night before. Why? There was a deadline.
4. Get help—Develop your support network
- A Success Partner–someone to hold you accountable for what you want to do and agree to do
- People who can be a sounding board–a few opinions about your bigger ideas or ways of moving forward–your board of directors for the career change
- People who can give you information on what the career you want is actually like and how you can break into it successfully–make sure you are interviewing each of them to find out just what you need to know that you can’t find out by researching online
- People who can help you remain motivated —who believe in you and help you believe in yourself
- Mentors or advice givers–for when you need specific ideas about something directly in the career field you want to move into
Don’t worry—you probably have most of these people in your community of support already. You just have to ask them when needed.
5. Be persistent
If you have a vision you really want to achieve, persistence in spite of difficulties becomes a lot easier, so we’re back to number one.