Advice from Career Expert : Deborah Shane
You have been toying with the idea of doing something else with your career and work, but you are paralyzed with fear.
Jobs and careers are better now because people are taking more responsibility for making them happen. Yes, optimism is up, attitudes are better, and there is more opportunity but finding jobs and changing careers is still daunting and challenging.
According to Gallup, 71% of American workers are not engaged or actively disengaged in their work, meaning they are emotionally disconnected from their workplaces and are less likely to be productive. That leaves nearly one-third of American workers who are engaged or involved in and enthusiastic about their work and contributing to their organizations in a positive manner.
People are not leaving the labor force, says Floyd Norris in a recent New York Times article. ¨You will learn that previously discouraged workers seem to be entering the labor force and looking for jobs. That is just what you would expect to happen when the job market is improving.¨
Why aren’t more people leaving the workplace to shift into something else they want to do? Should be easy right? Just pick and go? It’s not. It¡¦s more like plan and unfold.
Is it fear of change? Not knowing what they want to do? Not sure of how to proceed with a career change?
It’s all of the above!
If you want to make a change and shift into something else, now is actually a great time and can be a very successful and rewarding undertaking. But you have to professionalize it, not romanticize it! Have a plan, think it through, and follow a path.
Here are five steps that can help you get from where you are to where you want to go .
Steps I used in 2006! I took it one step at a time, and each one naturally lead to the next!
1. Discover your passion now, what you really want to do. What would make you happy and fulfilled? What would make you leap out of bed every day? Be willing to make less money to be happier. It lasts longer!
2. Uncover your key skills, qualities, intangibles, and accomplishments they are the things that drive you and are natural for you. Do a work history and inventory, and look for the common threads.
3. Reinvent how you use them, and apply them to what you really want to do. Be open, flexible, innovative, and curious about how you can apply and adapt them to areas that you are drawn to or interested in.
4. Rebrand a fresh new version of yourself. Describe your vibe now. Who are you now and what is your sparkle? Artist, writer , runner, foodie, fashionista, teacher, student?
5. Rebirth by marketing yourself with a blend of online and in-person networking, via professional events and the social media sites. Put yourself out there and market you! Let people know who you are and what you are passionate about, believe in, and stand for.
Career change and transition is a fact of and part of our life today and is affected by many circumstances.
Being prepared from the inside out, with a positive mindset, a professional appearance, skill relevance, and a clear plan and path is the way to get to the other side.
Take a leap of faith, dive off the board, pick up your pace, and make a shift by starting to shift!
It’s actually quite exhilarating.