As a resume writer and career coach, one of the top questions I’m asked is how to make a career change. In fact, I wrote a post on 9 to 5 Project earlier this year where I talked about how most career changes are career pivots. There is a good amount of overlap from the job you have been doing to the job and/or career you want to pursue.
Here are my top three steps for making a career change – FAST!
1. Write down what you are trying to do – Are you trying to change careers or find a new job? That is two completely different things, so make that distinction. An exercise I suggest to my clients is to write down what criteria in a job are important right now. These criteria are going to change over time, and that’s ok. Maybe right now a high salary is important. Or, a flexible work schedule. Try it for yourself!
2. Write down your transferable skills - Transferable skills are skills that are transferred from one job to another. Don’t underestimate the number of skills that you have! And, don’t discount skills that you picked up outside of a professional setting. They count too! We have a worksheet in our free career resources library that can help you analyse your transferable skills. Access it here.
3. Show, don’t tell – Take a look at your resume. Are you giving evidence of your accomplishments using quantifiable numbers? For example, it is much more impactful to say “Decreased expenses by 50%” than to say “Reduced costs.” Adding percentages, dollar amounts, and other numbers to your resume are so effective!
It’s not always easy to pivot to a job in a new industry or to make an entirely new career change. But, it’s not impossible. Plenty of people have done it! You can too!