According to The Balance website’s article “7 Tips for Setting Career Goals for the New Year,” January is “when many people start thinking about looking for a new job or considering a career change.”
For people with cancer, it’s often not simply the time of year that causes them to reflect on their job, but, rather, the sheer experience of being diagnosed or going through treatment. It can prompt them to take a hard look at how they spend their time — including at work — and whether it’s meaningful, whether it’s fulfilling.
If you’re at a point where you’re exploring a potential career change, there are some things you can do to make the process more productive and, ultimately, more successful. The Balance article offers seven helpful tips. Below we’ve highlighted the top three:
1. Inventory Your Skills. It’s always a good idea to start out by identifying what you do well — and what you like to do. First, make a list of the responsibilities you’ve had in previous roles (both paid and volunteer), and be specific. Be sure to include particular skills or knowledge you have, such as proficiency in a software program, fluency in a language or certification in a trade. Put a star next to the tasks you enjoy doing the most. Taking visual stock of your experience can help you determine what you may have an affinity for. It can also help boost your confidence.
2. Engage in Career Research. Spend time reading about various careers, whether online or in newspapers, business magazines or trade journals. Or head to the library, browse books on different industries and see what catches your eye. Pay attention to what resonates with you and why. Then, “compile a list of questions to research so that you can fully appraise the suitability of that career for you.”
3. Check Out What Your Friends Do. While we may know where our friends work and have a general idea of what they do, many of us don’t fully understand what their on-the-job routines looks like. Finding out exactly what a friend’s work responsibilities are and how his/her role contributes to the organization’s overall mission may spark an idea for you. So, sit down with friends, family members, and former coworkers and really talk to them about their positions — ask them what skills, training and experience are required in order for them to succeed. Tell them of your desire to change jobs and “ask for help brainstorming career options that might be worth considering within their sector.” And, of course, be sure to connect with them on LinkedIn, since networking is key to any successful job-hunt.
To read the entire Balance article, click here.