Let’s say you want to change careers, not just the same job in a different industry, but a totally different job. How do you make sense of your skills? How do you figure out what job is right for you?
Take these 5 steps to find your new job target:
1. Assess your skills. People have skills in six key areas: Verbal, Written, Creative, Mathematical, Organizing & Coordinating, Foreign Language. Think about your achievements in past work, school, volunteering or consulting. What did you do and what resonates for you? Go through your top accomplishments and see what skills seem to come up repeatedly. Which of your top skills are you willing to do in a different job setting?
2. Identify your interests – Do you like sports or travel? Do you like working for a company that has a mission you can believe in or a company that innovates technology? Do you enjoy the outdoors or prefer an urban landscape? Think about your hobbies and what you like to do in your leisure time.
3. Brainstorm – Combine your skills and interests to brainstorm possible job targets. For example, if you are good in accounting and want to work for an organization that has a socially conscious mission, then you may want to work as an accountant or bookkeeper in a non-profit organization. If you are good at organizing and planning projects and like international cultures, perhaps you want to be a project manager for an international bank. If you are a good writer and like fashion, you could write press releases for a fashion house or articles for a newspaper or magazine.
4. Do your research – Look on the internet, talk to people in your field, go back to your alumni directory and contact alumni with job titles you might be interested in. Talk with them on the phone or in person to find out how they got to this stage of their career, what did they do to get there, what skills does one need to succeed? Go to your local library to peruse the Dictionary of Occupational Titles or look at the Occupational Outlook Handbook from the US Department of Labor online to find out job titles. Scan the job descriptions on job sites, such as Monster, Glassdoor, Indeed, Idealist, etc. to find jobs that sound interesting.
5. Select two to three job targets to concentrate on. Make a list of companies, organizations and industries where that job title exists. Then go for it.
Remember – June 14 SIBL LIbrary, 6-7:30 PM “How to Use LinkedIn for Your Job Search”