Making a Professional Career Change
Do You Have a Choice?
Have you been thinking about a professional career change?
If you are disillusioned, frustrated or even depressed in your current profession, finding a career that provides fulfillment may be your only option!
If you stay in a job that you do not like and is causing you stress and frustration, the cost to stay there may be too high in terms of never realizing your true gifts.
Health issues also often develop as a result of remaining in a work situation that is stressful and unfulfilling.
Others Have Done It!
Embarking on a professional career change may be one of the hardest decisions in your life, but many others before you have had success in finding a career that provides meaning and fulfillment.
Let's face it.
It takes tremendous courage to leave a profession in which you have undergone significant tertiary education, spent large sums of money acquiring qualifications and dedicated many years of your working life to the profession.
But I want to suggest to you that when you get to the end of your life, you will be more disappointed and regretful that you didn't act in such circumstances.
Research suggests that most people are more disappointed with the things they didn't do in their life than the mistakes they made.
They wished they had avoided taking the safe road when at the intersection of major life decisions involving opportunity.
Professionals Find It Hardest
A professional career change is often more difficult to justify than for a nonprofessional changing careers.
Professionals are more likely to have invested heavily in their specialization, making the decision to start over appear more costly .
But it's not about starting over so much as redirecting the transferable skills you have gained over the years. Then combining those with the new understanding you have of yourself as you embark on finding a career that has significance and meaning.
The more specialized profession you are in and the further away from your natural giftedness you are functioning in, the more disillusioned and unfulfilled you are likely to be.
There is only one solution.
Many others have executed a professional career change.
Doctors have successfully become sales executives, lawyers have successfully become investment advisors and engineers have successfully become business consultants.
Do any of these comments sound like you?
"My job pays well but I just don't like it, I'm depressed."
"I want out but I'm just not sure how to go about it."
"I don't know if I am willing to accept a job that pays less"
I encourage clients seeking professional career change advice to begin to take some action.
Many people stay in professions for years that have worn them down because of a poor job fit.
They never get around to doing anything about it.
Up to 80% of the workforce are in jobs where they are not matched well to their naturally abilities and professionals are well represented in these figures.
What's the worst that can happen?
I encourage you to write out the above question on the top of a piece of paper and then list all the "worst" things that could happen.
Then on a second piece of paper take each of those worst-case scenarios and answer this question:
"If this did happen, what are all the different ways I could respond and what would the outcome of each of them be?"
Most people discover that these worst-case scenarios are never quite as bad as they imagined.
When we flesh them out on paper we are usually forced to carry them through to a rational conclusion, something which does not happen if we leave them ping-ponging around in our head.
Once we have discovered that the worst is usually "not all that bad", it empowers us to take some action knowing that the world will not end if things don't turn out the way we hope.
Then we put all our energy in to making it quite a bit better than the worst case scenario.
Professional Career Change: 4 Keys for Transition
You must find out very precisely what you are good at.
Even if you have a good idea of this, it is usually worthwhile to employ the services of a career change consultant and/or complete this career assessment
- Address your fears.
Some of these fears are mentioned above.
I am not what I think I am.
Some of them may involve the loss of prestige; what other people may think of you giving up on your profession.
I am not what you think I am.
I am what I think, you think I am
Some of them may involve the possible loss of income.
Some may involve the potential loss of your current social network.
Identify what these are and write them down so that once again they are less likely to clog up your mind in a habitual cycle without anything ever being resolved.
- Getting help.
6 Degrees of Separation
Stanley Milgram put the 6 degrees of separation theory to test in 1967 by getting random people to send packages to strangers.
The senders were given the name, occupation and approximate location of the receivers.
They had to send the package in the first instance to a person whom they knew and whom they would guess may have the greatest chance of knowing this person based on the information that was available.
The person who received the package would then do the same and so on until the recipient received the package.
It took on average between five and seven intermediaries for the package to be delivered.
The results appeared in Psychology Today.
If you haven't arranged a career change consultant to help you with self-discovery, you should consider this to help you assess your next steps and your strategic planning of the transition.
The one thing we know works so well but everybody hates to do and thinks they are not very good at.
If there is one thing that will help you succeed in the undertaking of a professional career change, it is networking.
Networking works on the principle of the 6 degrees of separation.
This means that you can access any person on this planet through no more than six levels of people contact.
[See sidebar, right].
It is also based on the premise that humans innately like to help others if approached correctly, particularly those who have already had a successful career.
We know that up to 80% of all jobs come from the hidden job market.
And the biggest single means of accessing these hidden jobs is through networking.
I recommend this fabulous networking book by Harvey Mackay
[also available as an audio book for your iPod etc.]
If you need help with implementing networking after reading this book, employ the services of a career change consultant to help you.
Has the day come........
And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a
bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom
Simon Davies Career Change Counselling
Gold Coast: Robina, Queensland Australia 4213
Phone Mobile (outside of Australia) +6148 1333 415
Phone Mobile (in Australia) 0481 333415