Stuck in a job you hate? Studied for a career path only to find it isn’t all you thought it would be? There is no reason for slogging along a path if it’s not the right one for you to be on. Never think that you have your life mapped out for you because you studied for one particular discipline.
You are not alone
Did you know that only about half of graduates actually go on to work in the exact same field as their degree? It’s true. Many will realize towards the end of their studies that their chosen career path may not be the right one. Others will only realize they are on the wrong track after landing a job and finding it much different to their expectations.
Deciding to make a career change either straight after graduation or after working for a while in the field doesn’t mean you have to panic and start all over again. As long as you have a strong passion to pursue a different path and a willingness to learn new skills, it doesn’t matter that you carry an unrelated degree. Many young hopefuls have ended up somewhere completely different to where they imagined they would be just a couple of years previously.
Let’s take a look at some tips and advice about switching your career path without having to stumble or start again from scratch.
Gain some new industry knowledge
Spend some time learning everything you possibly can about your new career path. You can do this in your spare time outside of work if you already have a job, or fit some study into your day if you have graduated and are looking for work.
Read up on books, blogs and follow experts in the field online to gain as much information as possible. We all have to start somewhere and the internet is a good place to start. It does require a lot of hard work and dedication, but gaining a solid background knowledge in your new chosen career industry will certainly help you land a job and also dispel any lingering doubts you may have about making that switch.
Make the best use of your transferable skills
No matter what field or industry you studied for, along the way you would have picked up a lot of skills that will stay with you for life, no matter what job you eventually end up with. Just about every employment role will need you have some transferable skills. Think along the lines of your punctuality and good time-keeping, your amazing keyboard typing speed and accuracy, your ability to cope well under pressure and meet deadlines, your organisation and time management skills that enable you to be very productive.
Speak up and be confident
Just because your degree isn’t relevant to the industry you want to work in doesn’t mean you cannot use it to prove your ability to study and learn new things. Being confident that you have the ability to fit in and adapt to your potential new role will show employers what you are capable of. Many recruiters will actively look above and beyond a degree to see the things you cannot learn in school. You may have a degree in Earth Sciences, but your skills as a blogger and your success on social media may well lead to a job in digital marketing or writing.
Seek out a mentor
There is nothing more positive than having first-hand guidance and encouragement from someone who actually works in the industry that you want to break into. There are lots of way to gain the help and knowledge from people in your chosen field. You can look up prominent members of staff on social media such as Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn and start to follow them. Read their blog and pinned posts. Join in with online discussions, leave positive comments and ask questions. Once you become known to them you are more likely to be engaged with. You should welcome all the advice and wisdom that they pass on to you and use this to help you on your journey to a better career.
These are just some useful tips and advice to help graduates find their right career path. No matter what you qualified in, it doesn’t mean your life has already been mapped out for you.