How to Change Careers: 5 Tips to Get You Started

  revature |

The top New Year’s resolution for 2021 was to exercise more and eat healthier. Right behind that, however, was changing jobs, learning new skills, or pursuing a new career. These are all great goals, but so few people actually make it happen. It can be a challenge and often, it’s hard to get started. While you’re on your own to eat better and work out more, if you’re looking to change careers, we have some advice.

If you find that your current job or career path isn’t rewarding, the pay is too low, there’s no opportunity for advancement, or you just want to make a change, you’re not alone. In July 2021, more than 4 million people left their jobs and in September, more than 4.4 million took part in what’s called the “Great Resignation.”

While taking the first steps towards changing your career path can be intimidating, it can also be life-changing. Here are five tips to start your journey and answer the question about how to change careers.

1. Think Outside the Box in Terms of Skill Sets

Let’s begin by taking inventory. Start by making a list of your skill sets. Don’t itemize your current job requirements or tasks you do, but think about how you do them. For example, if you work with spreadsheets and constantly have to find errors in formulas, you might list attention to detail and problem solving as two of your skills.

List anything and everything! You may be surprised by how long the list is. Many skills are transferrable, and you may not realize it. For example, foreign language majors can make great software engineers.

Wondering what the most in-demand skillsets are these days? Here’s what Glassdoor says are the top skills employers are looking for:

  • Communication skills, including written, verbal, nonverbal skills, empathy, conciseness, and active listening
  • Teamwork, including honesty, accountability, conflict management, coordination, collaboration, and negotiating
  • Work ethic, including discipline, integrity, self-motivation, professionalism, and dependability
  • Computer skills of all sorts
  • Time management, including planning, prioritizing, goal setting, and organization
  • Interpersonal skills, such as team building, adaptability, sensitivity, and risk-taking

2. Consider All Industries

While it’s natural to look into moving to a similar industry or making a lateral move, ask yourself if this is really what you want. Consider whether a job in another industry would be more rewarding. Don’t rule anything out.

Those skill sets you listed are in high demand in a lot more industries than you might think. With nearly 10 million job openings in the U.S. currently, there are a lot of opportunities.

3. Tap Into Your Network (Or Create New Ones)

Mine your networks for advice. Reach out to friends, family, and colleagues. Check out companies and groups on LinkedIn. If you’re not sure what field you like to consider for a career change, cast a broad net and talk to people from all walks of life. You never know what might spark your interest or give you a lead on a new career.

If you find something that interests you, reach out to someone in the field and ask a few questions. Many professionals are happy to provide advice.

4. Stay Positive and Motivated

As you’re planning a career change, keep in mind that things may not happen immediately. You’ll likely encounter a few roadblocks along the way. Don’t let it get you frustrated! Remember your end goals and why you’re looking to make the change.

Celebrate the little victories along the way. Maybe you got a call back for an interview or a mentor offered some advice that really stuck with you. Every step you take gets you one step closer to finding that job that will help you reach your career goals.

5. Look For a Company Willing to Invest In You

You may worry about having to go back to school or paying to get the training and skills you need to pursue a new career. Instead, search for companies willing to invest in you.

At Revature we believe that individuals from all backgrounds can successfully launch a career in tech. In fact, working for Revature includes 10-12 weeks of paid training for jobs in tech. That’s right. We pay you to learn the skills most in-demand by our clients while getting experience working on real-world projects.

We provide customized training to help you gain the most needed programming skills in the job market. Instead of working in a classroom, you’ll get real-world experience working for real companies. This helps you learn the skills you need for software engineer jobs or other jobs in tech while working on enterprise-level projects and getting paid. When you work with Revature for a career change, you also get access to an expansive network of peers to show you the ropes and help you launch a tech career.

Join other, like-minded individuals looking to start a career in tech. Check us out and let’s get started!

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