What is one suggestion you have for making a career change to be happier?
Here is what 14 thought-leaders had to say:
- Try It Out Before Making the Leap
- Making the Big Move Isn’t All About the Job
- Know How to Be Persuasive
- Align Your Career With Your Interests and Values
- Find All Common Threads
- Free Time Outside of the Office
- Determine Your Negotiables Before a Career Change
- It’s Not So Much the Job Title as It is the Lifestyle
- Vet the Company
- Open Yourself Up to New Opportunities
- Don’t Give in to Imposter Syndrome
- A Career Change that Helps You Better People’s Lives
- Analyze Yourself First
- Find Your Professional Sweet Spot
Try It Out Before Making the Leap
Before you make some serious career trajectory moves, consider finding ways to get involved first. One way you can do this is by attending industry events, where you can ask questions from experts and form quality connections that can point you in the right direction. If you have some extra time, you can also volunteer within that space and get some hands-on experience as well.
Brandon Brown, Grin
Making the Big Move Isn’t All About the Job
Location matters when you’re thinking about taking a job requiring you to relocate. There are many points to consider when it comes to making a big career move. Such issues can include the cost of living in that area, whether there is quality schooling nearby for your children, the company’s ability to ensure long-term employment, and whether or not you’ll enjoy a healthy level of happiness while living there. These all may be determining factors when it comes time to accept a job offer.
Researching the locations and surrounding areas of companies you’re interested in may help narrow your scope and allow you to focus on opportunities that are better suited to your lifestyle and any plans you may have for the future.
Chris Gadek, AdQuick
Know How to Be Persuasive
Being able to communicate and be persuasive when needed can have a big impact on your career. Whether you are working in sales or trying to ask for a promotion, using persuasive communication effectively can make the difference between closing a sale or advancing your career. You need to have a keen awareness of your audience and try to build rapport with them if you want to be successful at being persuasive.
Maegan Griffin, Skin Pharm
Align Your Career With Your Interests and Values
Identify what it is that you don’t like about your current career and then find a career that aligns better with your interests and values. By doing this, you will be happier because you will be doing something that you enjoy and that is in line with what you believe in.
Matthew Ramirez, Paraphrase
Find All Common Threads
A happy career transition is one that’s as painless as reasonably possible. One of the ways to accomplish this is to find as many common elements between your previous career and any new ones you’re interested as possible. Being able to highlight the skills and abilities that will carry over to your new career will make the case to hire you stronger.
Kate Lipman, embrace Scar Therapy
Free Time Outside of the Office
Make sure this career change gives you free time outside of the office. A work-life balance is vital to a happy work environment and lifestyle, and also necessary for mental health. This change should allow you to stay focused during the business day, and also give you time to unplug at the end of the day. Someone who is always connected will become severely burnt out and become dissatisfied with their role. Put your mental health and happiness over any position.
Lance Herrington, UNICO Nutrition
Determine Your Negotiables Before a Career Change
All jobs have various characteristics, and some of them are fixed, meaning your willingness or ability to self-negotiate to meet those unchangeable factors need to be taken into account before making a decision.
For example, if you wanted to be a famous stage actor, the requirement to move to New York to accomplish that goal is a negotiable factor that you may or may not be willing to make in that job option. Understanding and listing your negotiables will help you find a successful career that will make you happier by giving you parameters to work within to make sure there are no unpleasant surprises that ruin your dream.
Woody Sears, Hearhere
It’s Not So Much the Job Title as It is the Lifestyle
Consider the logistics of the career you choose to be happier. Think about how every single day will look, feel, and sustain you over the next few years of your life.
It’s easy to get wrapped up in the big picture, or in the smallest details, of what we do for a living. I think what’s more effective for measuring our satisfaction is recognizing how we want to be spending our time every day. When you can answer the “how” you want to spend your time, you can match your career to fit the lifestyle that will make you happiest. Some people like sitting at a desk, some people like staying on the move.
We all easily forget the many minutes in-between life’s big changes. If you can figure out how you want to spend your time, you’ll make more informed choices about who you give it to.
Dylan Trussell, Culprit Underwear
Vet the Company
When making a career change, it’s important to vet the company and ensure their business goals align with your personal goals. Often, employees may find their work unsatisfactory because it does not contribute to their own personal beliefs. Such as employee growth or a team environment, for example. It’s imperative when applying to new companies that both parties are connected to a mission statement.
Corey Ashton Walters, Here
Open Yourself Up to New Opportunities
A great way to become happier with a career change is by opening yourself up to new opportunities. Even if your current position can partially fulfill all of your passions or interests, there may be an adjacent industry or role that could make you happier. Find a job that aligns with your personal and professional values — are you someone who cares about the environment? Maybe find a career in sustainable energy or environmental science. Do you value collaboration and teamwork? Consider working for a company that focuses on those qualities.
Chris Thompson, Backdoor Survival
Don’t Give in to Imposter Syndrome.
Stop believing you have to settle. Many people suffer from a condition called imposter syndrome. That’s when a person doubts their abilities and feels like a fraud. I think this personality disposition is what stops many unhappy employees from changing their career path — because they feel like they aren’t capable and don’t truly deserve it. Change those beliefs, and watch your whole life transform.
Stephanie Venn-Watson, fatty15
A Career Change that Helps You Better People’s Lives
Even when it comes to our careers, it is the people we interact with that make all the difference for most of us. You could be among those who value the presence of people around you and find this aspect of human interaction to influence your ability to find happiness on the job. If you have found this true, your career change should consider this crucial element above everything else. Make your new career about choosing a people-centric role to help you better people’s lives. This way, everything you do will give you satisfaction, and every accomplishment on the job will make you truly happy.
Azmaira Maker, Ph.D., Aspiring Families
Analyze Yourself First
Unfortunately, many of us are quick to jump the gun and take up a new career field because we are not enjoying the current one we are in. The first step to a long-lasting happy career change is to know yourself well. Sit down and take time to analyze what you dislike about your current career, what you tolerate, what you enjoy, and what your strengths and weaknesses are.
Based on these answers, look at different alternate careers that fit well with your strengths. Lastly, take time to analyze your lifestyle and make sure that the new career path will pay sufficiently to maintain the lifestyle you prefer.
Liz Hogan, Find My Profession
Finding Your Professional Sweet Spot
Us humans seek meaning. If something is meaningless, we are not likely to engage with it. When we feel like we have no choice, i.e. we have to earn money to pay the bills, feed the kids and survive, then we will do so begrudgingly.
What do you care about (beyond survival)? What are you passionate about? What aspects of society or life in general do you feel need to be improved? What conversation topics do you find yourself having something to say about? When do you ‘fire up’?
Answering these questions will give you an indication of an area of life that, if you could be involved in, would mean something to you, like you were trying to make a difference that matters.
Now write down your natural (or developed) talents and skills. What are you good at? How could these skills be applied to the above cause you care about?
If you are looking for an existing organization to be a part of, inquire about their purpose and values. Are they living their culture? Is it a fit for you?
Jem Fuller, Coach, Author, and Speaker
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