7 Steps of Career Transition

Whether you are just graduating college or are experiencing a mid-life career challenge and rethinking what kind of work you want to do, it is critical to do some self examination. What do you really want to do or be?  What are your natural talents, abilities, and skills?  How do you get energized, and what challenges you in a positive way?  Gaining self-knowledge; determining your priorities and identifying your values are important factors in choosing a career direction and are the first steps to a successful career transition.

Here are two possible scenarios to consider:

Scenario A;  Career Transition to a New Job

  1. Explore your wants and needs for career fulfillment by identifying your particular requirements (How much income must you have?  Where and when are you willing and able to work?  What are your top 3 things you must have in your next job in order to be happy?)
  2. Identify potential employment opportunities
  3. Research potential employers to determine corporate or organization culture, management style, mission and vision.
  4. Update and revise your resume to maximize getting interviews
  5. Build your network through informational interviewing, attending events related to your profession, joining professional associations, and using social media.
  6. Enhance your interviewing skills – practice how you will answer difficult questions
  7. Navigate job offers, negotiate your salary/benefits

Scenario B;  Career Transition into Self Employment

  1. Explore your wants and needs for career fulfillment by identifying your particular requirements (How much income must you have?  Where and when are you willing and able to work?  What are your top 3 things you must have in your next job in order to be happy?)
  2. Analyze ways of working to determine the best fit for you.  For example: be employed part time while building your business, or writing your book or going to school, etc., or jumping full time into starting a business.
  3. Conduct market research to be sure that your business idea is realistic.
  4. Launch your business and determine your niche.  What is the scope of your service or product line?  Who benefits from what you are putting out into the marketplace?
  5. Develop your marketing strategy for your business including your brand.
  6. Build your network:  create cross referrals with colleagues who serve the same customer demographic, utilize social media, blogging and article writing to establish your expertise.
  7. Navigate project offers, draft proposals to meet customers’ needs, determine pricing and distribution channels for your product or service.

In either scenario A or B you start in the same place: exploring YOUR wants and needs for career fulfillment.

“If a man does not keep pace with his companions perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer.  Let him step to the music he hears, however measured or far away.”  -Henry David Thoreau

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