For cancer survivors, the aspiration to change careers is quite common. A diagnosis like cancer often leads to a new outlook on life which can create a desire or even need to switch to something more meaningful or less stressful.
With the job market being scarce during COVID-19, even more people find themselves applying for jobs in new fields, and thus, it’s even more important to strategize how you’ll successfully market yourself in a new industry.
An article by Forbes highlights three tips to do so:
Do not waste your time applying for jobs you
aren’t qualified for. Look at positions closely to determine if there is at
least 70% match between the job requirements and your skills. Note: skills
are different than prior job responsibilities, and are traits that can be
transferable among jobs such as leadership, project management, data analysis,
customer service, etc.
your resume for the job you are applying for. A hiring manager will read your
resume for only approximately 30 seconds, so you want to make sure you are
highlighting the most relevant parts of your experience. Also, make sure to
include key-words that are specific to the field. And, make sure it is
scannable by ATS software.
- Be prepared to explain why you want to switch industries. If you aren’t quite sure or it’s simply because of financial reasons, ask yourself what you hope to learn and why this change is important for your career. What excites you about working for this company? This should help you uncover why you want to make the change there specifically. Remember, you do not have to share your diagnosis during the job search, so if that is your motivating reason, try to uncover why specifically you are looking at that job or field, as opposed to why you need to turn away from your old one.
It's always important to have your resume reviewed by at least one person before submitting it. Cancer and Careers offers a free resume review service where you receive personalized feedback from a professional career coach. In addition, join us for a deep dive on crafting your best resume on Tuesday, June 2nd for Resumes 101 webinar.
To learn more about making a successful career change, view our Balancing Work & Cancer Webinar recording here, and order or download a copy of our Job Search Toolkit.