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CHANGING YOUR CAREER PATH

Victoria Pam 3

Do you think you are not growing in the path which you have chosen? Are things not just working out the way you thought they will in your career? Are you certain that the best step to take right now is a change in your career? Or do you think that there are some tweaks you can make in that career to make to advance in your career? So, your career is not in line with your passion, do you feel you need a change?
We are going to discuss all that in this article. So, let’s dive in right away.

Bryan is a medical student and is doing pretty okay in his field. Halfway through his time in college he is suddenly overwhelmed and feels like he can’t go on. Why? So, the decision to study medicine was not his. He was influenced to take that decision. Bryan wants to be an engineer. At this point, what do you think is the best step for Bryan to take? Should he go back to his first year in school to study engineering? Or should he continue in the pursuit of being a medical doctor? After all, he is not doing so bad in it.

The next step can be different for everyone. As we continue, let us first understand what a career path means.

MEANING OF CAREER PATH

A career is the progress and actions taken by a person throughout a lifetime, especially those related to that person’s occupation. A career is often composed of the jobs held, titles earned and work accomplished over a long period of time, rather than just referring to one position. – Business Dictionary.
A path is a way or a course of direction in which a person or thing moves.
A career path, therefore, includes the systems of jobs an individual engages in at each stage to achieve his or her goals and objectives. Traditionally, career path was vertical growth or advancement to a higher level position but now it isn’t so. They also involve lateral steps within or across industries.

There are highs and lows in some individual’s career. Looking at Bryan, a decision to start school all over again might be him taking a downward path. Being that he has probably wasted three years of his life. But for him, the major thing might be that he achieves his goals. So, the movement to achieve our career goals must not just be in a particular line. There can be a change. It can go in any direction.

Questions to ask yourself before a career change

Talking about change in career path. First of all, the desire to change your career path shouldn’t be implemented without asking yourself certain questions. The following questions are important so that you don’t regret the steps you take in line with your career change. And to know the steps to take before plunging into that target field. You can write your answers down, that should be helpful.

Why do I want to change?

Knowing first of all the reason you want to change is very essential. We feel we want to change our careers for different reasons. What are the reasons you want a new career? It could be financial. Is your current position not settling you financially? It could also be less time for loved ones. Or do you feel too stressed out? Are you feeling stressed out because you are not able to meet up with the current project at hand?
There are different reasons sometimes unique to an individual. So, try to relax and think about those reasons for some time.

Is it my “boss” I will like to change or the job itself?

The environment and individuals we work with directly or indirectly affect our work behaviour. Sometimes the reason why some of us want to change is because of our bosses. Probably you don’t like the way he leads or you don’t agree with his work ethics. That is okay. But it is not enough reason to change your career.
Try and imagine performing the same job in another company or with a different boss. Now, do you think you can continue in that position? There are other ways to go about it. Why not try applying for another job within the same industry.

Am I financially stable?

Sometimes we are in a haste to just quit. Getting a job these days is really not easy. You need to know the financial consequences involved in quitting your job. So, asking yourself questions like; if I quit this job now, will I be able to sustain myself with my current lifestyle for six months or a year without borrowing? Or can I change my lifestyle because I am not earning as much as before?
Also knowing the pay for the job, you want to quit for is essential. Surfing the internet could help. Search on the salary range of the position you are applying for. Also, on how long it takes for an increase in salary to be affected.

Want do I have to gain in a new career?

I know, this new career path might seem very attractive. But knowing what you have to gain from this new career is essential. Asking questions like does my current job fit into my career goals? If not, then will my new career fit better into my career goal?
Having a long-term career goal is important. We all should have goals, blueprints of our career goals. Therefore, get to know if your current job or your new job will fit better into your plans.

Will I be able to acquire the skills needed for this career?

Getting into a new career can mean to start all over for some people. And for others, it might mean to just acquire a few skills. Be realistic about the challenges you might likely face and know if you are well equipped to overcome them.
Therefore, you need to know if your current educational background can get you started along the career path you want. It’s crucial to ascertain the necessities for the career intended. Having the zeal to learn comes into play here. Ask yourself questions like; will I be able to go back to school? How easy or how hard will it be for me to acquire these skills?

Am I being realistic?

This last question is important before finalizing that decision. After analyzing and answering all the questions above in relation to your reasons, finances, skills, and lifelong goals, how realistic do you think a change is? Here’s what can help. If there are more answers which are positive than negative, then go ahead with your plans. If not, then stick with your current career and know the areas you are having issues with. Try to develop those areas and watch how things change. Either way, you are still experiencing a change, right?

STEPS TO CHANGE YOUR CAREER PATH

Having understood the above, the following can help you know the career path to delve into or advance in your current career path.

Understand yourself

Understand who you are, what you like doing and what you can do without breaking a sweat. Basically, do an honest self-evaluation of your interests, skills, and values. You can make use of some self-assessment tools and career tests to find out what path is suitable for your personality. Also, you can review your past roles, jobs, volunteers, and project which you undertook to determine your preferred skills and activities.

Advancement of your skills

Having assessed your skills, you probably know what your strong points are and those you need training on. So, improving on these skills is important. Research on how to grow your skills and what you need to do to attain your goals. It might be that you have to go back to school or just take a few pieces of training. Read articles, look for someone you can look up to in that field. Talk to people for advice, especially those whose careers relate to the one you are about to delve into.
Also, you can start out by volunteering. That could give you heads up on what you getting into. Whatever it may be, just get started.

Make career goals

It is essential for you to have a good description of your goals. A goal is aiming to get the desired result. Have you heard of SMART goals? They are Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant and Timebound goals. They help you in your goal setting and achievement. Create SMART goals for your career. They are guidelines to help you maintain focus and invariably achieve your goals.
Visualize all you will want to attain and write them down. However, it is important to note that sometimes as time goes on things begin to unfold in your career. Now all you have to do is to improve on the already set goal.

I really hope this article is helpful and you are able to make the right decision after going through this article. Because I’m sure Bryan would have been able to make the best decision if he came across this article.

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