Many people look at the new year as a fresh start for their jobs, or the ideal time for a career change. If you’ve reached a point where you feel neither productive nor satisfied with your job, a change may be necessary. It could be that the gas pedal is not working and your career journey has slowed down. It could also be that your passion for your job has become tamer. Or it could even be that you feel held back by a poor salary or a lack of promotions at your company. Irrespective of cause, you should know that simply thinking about changing your job is a good thing; it means that you are determined to improve and meet your goals.
The beginning of every year is a great period to start making such career changes because many companies have their hiring needs prepared. But don’t jump the gun too quickly! Before you press the start button for a new career journey, you need to lay the foundation. The career experts at Bayt.com recommend that you contemplate and answer the following questions:
Why do you want a new job?
Answering this question is essential. You cannot seek something you do not know. Why do you want to find a new job? Are you unhappy with your compensation? Do you need more career development and training? Are you in the wrong field or industry? Or are you simply seeking to break your routine and do something more fun and exciting? These questions should mirror your career map. Try to picture your dream job and see which of these elements your current position does not tick off. Compile a list of your motives for switching jobs so you can have a starting point.
What is your dream job?
Ideally, this is a question that you have answered as early as when you searched for your very first job. After you have found out what makes you unhappy about your current job, you need to specify what it is that makes you happy. It may sound repetitive but you need to know what you want and what you do not want in your career. Are you looking for a challenging job that teaches you something new and puts you out of your comfort zone every day? Or are you looking for a stable and familiar job that you have all the skills for and that guarantees a comfortable income? These questions will guide you in the right direction as you perform your job search.
Are you willing to invest?
Most likely, if you are seeking a new career opportunity, you are striving for something better than what you already have. Keeping that in mind, switching jobs and taking a new career path will come with some challenges, risks, and demands. You need to be fully prepared to invest the additional time and effort to make the move. You may need to spend extra hours searching, networking, and filling out your job applications. Whenever you find that higher-paying, more-challenging, or better-fitting job, you will then need to prove that you are worth that upgrade.
Can you repackage your skills?
There are many skills that you can easily apply to almost every job and industry. These include time management, attention to detail, teamwork and such soft skills. However, many skills that are seen as non-transferrable may be tricky when you look for a new job. These include more technical skills and applicable experience. Here is where you need to assess whether your skills transferability is convincing enough. Perhaps you need to conduct some online self-assessments, or enroll in a few online courses before applying to a job in an entirely new field.
Did you find the perfect fit?
Don’t make the mistake of dropping everything you already have. Yes, you do need to start your job search before leaving your current position or even having the discussion with your manager. You need to plan this process well in advance to make sure that it is worth the risk. What companies and career opportunities have you looked at? You need to truly dive into the culture and the details of the prospective job to make sure it fully addresses and resolves your existing concerns. Ideally, you should have a few jobs lined up that you are excited about and qualified for before you start applying.