How to Pivot and Reboot your Career
Take a manageable, brave leap of faith to open new doors in your career.
Most of us, as professionals, want to have a career where we’re doing something we’re good at, we’re happy at, and where we create value for others. But maybe you’re like many people, and your current job doesn’t excite you anymore. It doesn’t motivate you like it used to and you’re ready to make a change. You’re thinking about a career pivot, about changing the trajectory of your professional career.
Coined as ‘pivoting’, this is making an intentional shift in a new direction, yet related to your core professional identity. For example, you may currently work in human resources, but now want to shift toward specializing in leadership and development. Or, in a more extreme case, you are logging hours in finance, but you have aspirations to take those skills to the fashion industry.
Whatever the case, it takes time, resources and plenty of hustling to pivot from one job description to another. Most of the time, experts recommend preparing for a full year ahead of when you’d like to move to set yourself up for success. Here, how to do it.
1. Think Outside Your Niche
Regardless of your education or training, your skills can translate into various niches. Especially when it comes to leadership and collaborative abilities, exploring outside your current field could prove fruitful.
- Address burnout in your current role to jump-start the move.
- Prepare to show employers how your existing skills translate.
Look ahead to potential post-pandemic business trends.
2. Add to Your Skills for More Opportunity
Your existing abilities can likely translate to a range of vocations. But expanding your skills widens the net when it comes to discovering novel opportunities.
Identify the skills and knowledge gaps,
- Recognize your soft skills and work to develop them further.
- Set yourself apart from the competition by pursuing additional education, such as an accounting or business degree.
- Set your sights on becoming an industry expert in your chosen niche.
3. Make Connections to Support Your Goals
No matter how well-equipped you are to tackle a new role, your connections are what matters most. Networking with and learning from others who have been in your shoes is an excellent way to move forward.
- Optimize your LinkedIn profile for your career change.
- Find ways to network with your contemporaries.
- Seek a mentor in your industry.
- Start a networking group or a learning group of your own.
Embarking on a new career path can be trying at the best of times. But with these proactive tips along with a strong belief system, you can begin moving toward rewarding opportunities even before the pandemic ends.
4. Believe in Yourself
Change always involves risk, fear, discomfort and uncertainty, but navigating it successfully depends on one thing: believing in yourself. When it comes to changing your life, knowing that something better awaits you and believing that you deserve it isn’t half the battle. It’s the entire war.
One of the key things is to embrace change and invest in yourself. So be prepared to continue investing in yourself, whether that’s a course or training, developing your skills, and maintaining your contacts.
Changing course can feel overwhelming, but it can be done. All you need are clear short and long-term goals and a roadmap to get there. As Jack Welch once said, “Control your own destiny or someone else will.” There’s never a bad time to make a successful career pivot.
Life and work will be different once the storm passes. By following these strategies, you’ll be prepared for whatever the future holds.
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