Changing the Trajectory of Your Career: How to Get Started

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Let’s face it, we all reach that point in our careers where we step back and think about throwing in the towel and starting a whole new career. Many people feel like they are no longer challenged, they are not receiving the recognition they deserve, or simply need a change and need some new motivation in life—it’s totally normal. 

So, just how do you go about doing this? How do you take the big jump and start a brand-new career, or even launch your own business? Although starting a new business can be really risky, especially in this day and age of looming economic instability and recessions, there are tons of tools to help you along the path. 

We chatted with a few people who had decided to change their career paths. There are a few steps you can take to ensure a smooth transition, whether you’re switching careers, becoming a remote freelancer, or starting your own business. Let’s take a look at the top tips we came up with.

career trajectory switch promotion education

Consider taking a few courses 

If you have felt like you have been stagnating for a while, it could be time to top up that skill set of yours. In many cases, once someone has been in a position for a while, and doing repeated tasks, they start becoming second nature. You will feel like you stop challenging yourself and days seem to disappear into each other. 

Challenging yourself to learn something new could be a good break in that mold. Whether you want to learn a completely different skill, acquire your degree or diploma, or whether you want to do a course to top up your current education, there are numerous options out there for you. 

Whether you are looking to climb the career ladder or even open your own business, you could possibly look into taking up leadership courses. These provide you with insights into managing other people and teams and getting the best out of your staff. By taking these courses in your current role, you are showing your employer that you are keen on moving up the corporate ladder.

Create a development plan for yourself 

This is almost like your own personal business plan. By writing down what your goals are and how you aim to achieve them, you are setting into motion your plans to actually kick off your change. If you want to start your own thing and launch yourself into entrepreneurship, having a personal development plan is absolutely essential. 

So, what does a personal development plan consist of? First, it identifies the strengths and skills that you already possess. It outlines what you have achieved, and what capabilities you currently have to work with. From there, it maps out the goals that you want to achieve and how exactly you are going to achieve them. 

Not only does a personal development plan allow you to gain self-awareness and pinpoint where your growth points need to be but it also allows you to be realistic about your future goals. So, if you have a full-time job, and a growing family, the chances of you taking on new education and becoming an entrepreneur are quite slim, unless you learn how to improve work-life balance.

Research your options 

Before changing the trajectory of your career, make sure you do your research and know what you are getting yourself into. Becoming a freelancer or remote worker might sound glamorous, especially if you are trying to get out of your 9-to-5 job. But the fact of the matter is that you will need a full portfolio to attract clients, and you will need to find the right resources to find clients. 

Even this, in itself, takes time. Acquiring clients can take weeks or even months, and from there, it can be challenging to get invoices paid. So, it is highly recommended that you start the process while still in your current career. Start building up your portfolio. Start reaching out for jobs and clients. 

The same goes for hopping into entrepreneurship. Building a business takes a lot of time and a lot of resources. If you are working full-time and managing home life, resources might be limited to building your new empire. In saying this, however, do not give up hope. Rather, know that it might take some time and a bit more patience to break the ice.

The bottom line 

Anyone who has changed their career can say the same thing. It is long hours. It is a lot of work and planning. It is a lot of sleepless nights. However, if you feel like you need a professional change, don’t let this discourage you—in the end, it will be worth it.

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