Making a career change is a tremendous decision that requires thought and consideration. The decision can significantly affect your professional success, life satisfaction, and financial future. Unfortunately, too many people make career-switching mistakes that can have serious and long-lasting consequences.
You need to be aware of the common pitfalls that can derail your career trajectory, especially when you’re seeking to make a change. Understanding common career change mistakes to avoid can help you make an informed decision and minimize the risk of damaging your prospects.
Forgetting Your Priorities
People switch careers for various reasons, such as making more money, pursuing a passion, or finding a better work-life balance. Although these reasons are valid, it's important to remember why YOU are making the switch. Keep sight of your priorities and goals as you embark on this new journey.
One way to accomplish this goal is to create a career roadmap that includes your long-term career goals and the steps needed to get there. This will remind you of your priorities and help you stay focused and motivated.
Rushing Into a New Career Because You Hate Your Job
Being unhappy at work can make you feel stuck and desperate for a career change. However, it's important to take the time to assess your options and find a next role that is a better fit. Rushing into something new without researching and understanding what it entails can lead to disappointment and regret.
Take the time to research potential career paths, talk to people in the field, and do informational interviews. These steps will help you better understand the path you’re considering and determine if it is the right fit for you. Additionally, look into career coaching or take online courses to gain the transferable skill set needed for your new career direction. And if you’re still trying to decide whether your current role is the right fit for you, try our short quiz.
Getting Ahead of Yourself
Switching careers might sound easier said than done, especially when you hear about others who have made a switch. Remember, everyone's journey is different, and there is no one-size-fits-all solution. It’s best to properly assess your skills and interests, research potential career paths, and develop a plan for how you'll make the switch.
You also need to be realistic about the time and effort it will take to make the switch. Don't get ahead of yourself by expecting to make a career switch overnight. You may have to apply for jobs, attend networking events, and prepare for job interviews. Set realistic goals and be patient as you work toward them.
Pursuing a career change is a big decision, and it can be daunting. But with the right preparation and mindset, it can be a rewarding experience. Take the time to assess your options, lay out your plan, and be patient as you execute it.
Changing Careers Because Someone Is Pressuring You
People in your life will sometimes encourage – or even push – you to make a career switch. These could be family, friends, or even a mentor. While their advice is often well-intentioned, it's important to remember that the career decision must ultimately be yours.
Don't let yourself be compelled into making a career switch if it doesn't feel right. Instead, consider all the options relative to your objectives and make an informed decision.
Career change is an arduous process that requires careful planning and preparation. It’s important to be aware of the most common mistakes that people make when changing careers, such as not taking the time to research a potential new path, not seeking input from others in that field, and not patiently working through the process. By avoiding these mistakes, you can take the right steps to ensure a successful transition into a new career.
PathWise allows you to be in charge of your career change. We guide you through exploring your options and developing an action plan to take the steps toward your new career. Get your career switch started with us today!