It’s never too late to change careers — after the big industry collapses of the past decade, increasing numbers of people are trying just that. If you’ve ever thought that you can’t change industries no matter your age, it’s time to think again.
1. Go for It
Image via Flickr by david drexler
This might sound obvious, but so many people think about getting out of their industry for so long that they get complacent and never do it. If you’re thinking about getting out of your industry, be proactive and take steps toward your goal. Take a lesson from some of the world’s most successful billionaires. People like Mark Zuckerberg, Steve Jobs, Daryl Katz, and Mark Cuban didn’t spend years mulling over their plans to switch things up. They jumped into new ventures headfirst. – some even quit school to do it.
2. Do a Self-Assessment
Before you begin job-hunting in your new industry, you need to understand how the skills you already have will translate. If you’re looking for the same job in a different industry, it’s not that hard to show this, but if you’re looking for a whole new career in a different industry, you might have to get more creative. Do a self-assessment of all the work and projects you’ve accomplished over the years, pulling out all the relevant aspects that will be beneficial to an employer or investor in your new industry.
3. Rework Your Resume
Sit down with someone you trust, or consider hiring someone to revise your resume. After your self-assessment, you should understand what attributes translate to your new field. Sculpt your resume to fit your new field, then check to see whether there are any major holes evident in what it says about you. If you lack experience or skills, consider taking online courses or workshops to help you beef up your resume and hone your skills in your new field.
4. Dive In Head-First
If you are interested in a new industry, treat it like learning a foreign language. Dabbling in a new industry won’t prepare you quickly to make a change. You need to immerse yourself in your new industry to learn everything you can as soon as possible. If you’re changing industries, you’re probably already behind, and although your work experience is beneficial, you need to learn all you can to catch up with those who have been operating in this field all their lives.
5. Engage in Networking and Marketing
It’s time to get out and start networking. You never know who you are talking to, whether on the subway, in a plane, or while mingling at a party. It’s important when you are in the process of changing industries that always be marketing yourself. Now is the time to feel confident about your abilities and show them off to everyone you meet. You might feel insecure changing industries, but this isn’t the time for self-deprecation.
Changing industries can be scary, but it could also be one of the most rewarding experiences of your life. If you feel like it’s time to get out of your current industry, tread carefully — but don’t hesitate to dive in.
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