If you’ve ever attempted to make a career change, you’ll know that it’s not easy. Whether you’re looking to branch out with your own business, change industries, or simply move into a new role within the same business; going in a new direction is a daunting task that comes with a whole list of challenges. But don’t let that deter you from making an important change! There are always ways to move from one path to another, and luckily, we’ve put together these five steps to help you on your way.
1. There’s more than one chance to change.
Making any big change in your life can be stressful and scary. All too often we’re paralysed by our fear, making it impossible to move forward or to choose a direction. That’s why it’s important to keep in mind that your life - and career – is a journey, not simply an outcome. So, rather than focusing solely on an end goal, try to think in terms of your next step, or what you would like to try next. Avoid putting added pressure on yourself by thinking that you need to find your true calling and your life’s passion, or making a much-needed change will be that much harder. Remember that very few people know exactly what they want to do with their lives from the very start, most of us figure it out as we go along. Plus, if it doesn’t work out, you can always go in another direction.
2. Base your next job on what you enjoy doing.
When changing careers, people tend to place a lot of focus on the skills they’ve developed or the professional experience they’ve gained, and use this to guide their next steps. But perhaps more important should rather be to think about what you enjoy and what you’re naturally good at. What sort of environment do you enjoy being in? What sort of people do you want to work with? These questions will help you narrow down your options, allowing you to do more targeted research into what specific jobs entail and what sort of experience and skills you will need to land one of these roles. Once you know what direction you want to go in, it becomes easier to see how you can plug in your existing skills and experience. Plus, this way, you’re less likely to end up doing another job that you don’t enjoy!
3. Be clear on your non-negotiables.
Do you have a good understanding of what your priorities are when it comes to choosing your new career path? If not, this is a step worth spending some time on. Your non-negotiables are things that you absolutely cannot do without, and it’s important that you make a clear list of what these are and separate them from your ‘nice-to-haves’. You’ll quickly be able to develop a checklist that you can use to cross-check prospective jobs to help you figure out if it’s an option worth pursuing. Whether it’s your everyday work environment, remuneration, or how rewarding the job is; non-negotiables will be different for everyone so it’s important to spend time figuring out what these are for you.
4. You need to believe that it really can happen.
Changing careers can be daunting. But if you believe in yourself and your ability to perform your new role well, you’re already halfway to achieving success! Remember, if you don’t have confidence in yourself, nobody else will have confidence in you either. So, to help build your self-belief, start by identifying key milestones on your journey to success. Next, pinpoint specific activities and tasks you need to do in order to achieve these goals. By taking these steps forward, no matter how trivial or small they may seem, you will slowly move towards achieving your goals and are sure to grow your self-confidence with each milestone reached.
5. Build your networks.
If you dream of starting a new business, changing careers or simply moving in a new direction, surrounding yourself with a strong and supportive network is key to your success! Talk to people in your network who are in the industry you wish to move into. You’ll be surprised how much you can learn from their experiences, which will save you having to learn these lessons the hard way yourself. Ask questions about what they do, how they got there, and what you’ll need to make it in the field. This advice and support will prove to be invaluable in your journey to a successful career change.
You now have a few ways to get started. If you would like to make sure you avoid the most common mistakes when creating a new career grab our free guide. You can download it here
Have an amazing day!
Your brand is your reputation. It’s your calling card. It’s what you’re known for and how people experience you. It’s about bringing who you are, to what you do and how you do it. Delivering your brand clearly and consistently will create a memorable experience in the minds of those you interact with, personally and professionally, and can be the key to opening doors to new opportunities. That’s why building your personal brand is just so important. Plus, you want people to remember the best sides of you and not letting negative self talk guide others' perception of you. And by knowing your story it allows people to connect on a more personal level to you. Don’t know where to start? Here are our top 5 tips to effectively building your personal brand.
1. Define Your Story
We all have a narrative that we tell, whether we do so consciously or unconsciously. And it is these stories that define us. In building your brand it’s important to tell a compelling story of who you are, whether you’re speaking to co-workers, bosses, clients, friends, family, or strangers you have just met. It’s these stories that will inspire them to believe in your character, in your motives behind your actions, and your ability to reach the goals you’ve set for yourself. Plus, the process of creating and telling a story that resonates can help you build belief in yourself too. When defining your story make sure not to let the past dictate your future, but rather take stories of the past that are relevant for the future and build these into your brand.
2. Know Your Purpose
As well-known author and marketing consultant Simon Sinek once said, “people don’t buy what you do, they buy why you do it”. That’s why it’s important for you to know exactly what your values are, so you can build a good understanding of why you do what you do. Knowing your purpose, and being able to clearly communicate this to the people around you, will go a long way in getting people to buy into your personal brand.
3. Decide What Skills and Strengths to Showcase
The next step is to figure out which of your skills and strengths you want to be known for and then showcasing these as best you can. You may have many skills, but the ones that are the most important to highlight are the ones that are most relevant to your success. The more people associate you with your specific areas of expertise, the more they will trust and value your personal brand, allowing you to become their go-to for insights or opinions.
4. Have Your Elevator Pitch Ready… Always
You never know when you’re going to meet someone that has the power to change your life, so it’s vital that you’re always prepared! If you had 30 seconds to tell people about yourself, your idea or your career or business to someone, would you be ready? What would you say? Would you be able to get your message across effectively and authentically? Face-to-face opportunities are rare, so when one of them comes your way, make sure you’re as ready as you can be with a perfected elevator pitch that will effectively sell you as a person, as well as your business.
5. Be Authentic
Your personal brand should reflect who you really are. A good starting point is to make sure you have a good understanding of who that is before you start sharing it with the world. Take the time to figure out exactly what you believe in, what you stand for and what your strengths and weaknesses are. Remember that people connect with other people. Stay true to your authentic yourself and people will naturally trust you.
6. Tidy Up Your Online Profiles
Being in the spotlight isn’t for everyone, but these days everyone is online. Make sure you’re social media profiles reflect who you are and how you want to be seen. Remember to focus on sharing quality content and keep a balance between career or business and personal life. Perhaps you should consider setting up a personal website to improve your search rankings and to allow you more control over your online presence. The more accessible you are, the stronger your personal brand will become.
Would you like to get feedback on your elevator pitch? Or other tips and support on your journey to create a life and career you love? The come and join our free facebook group TAC She Sisterhood, full of likeminded women on their journey to create a life and career they love. Join the sisterhood here.
Have a wonderful day!
Are you thinking about making some big changes in your life? Do you want to up your game at work despite having young kids? Are you looking for a change in careers altogether? Or maybe you dream of starting your own business? But all too often, something stops you in your tracks, even before you’ve started.
Often, the thing that is stopping you from making these positive changes is in fact your own mind and the stories that you tell yourself about why you can’t do it. To overcome these negative mindsets, you first need to become aware of the thoughts that act as barriers to change, and then learn how to reframe these so that they’re motivating instead. Here are 5 negative things we tend to tell ourselves when we’re faced with change, and how to combat them.
1. I don’t have the right experience.
Reframe: I have built up experience over a lifetime and can add the skills I need to do this.
When faced with doing something different, it can often leave you feeling as though you have no experience at all! Remember that throughout your life you have built up a wealth of knowledge that goes far beyond your professional career. Make a list of all the skills you have and experience you’ve gained, and then see how these can benefit you in your new pursuit. Identify the areas where you’re lacking and figure out how you can learn these new skills that you will need. Once you have a plan of action, the experience gap won’t seem so daunting anymore.
2. Now is not the right time to change.
Reframe: Now is as good a time as any to start creating the life and career I want.
Starting on a path of change can be daunting. It’s the reason why all too often you stop yourself before you’ve even started. If you give in to this thought, you’re bound to find a reason to justify it, no matter what stage of your life you’re in. Your kids are too young, you don’t have the money, or you’re about to get a promotion at work. Whatever the reason, it’s important to remember that you can start small and take little steps towards achieving your new goals today. Whether it’s as simple as working on your business plan, taking an online course, building your mailing list, or expanding your network, start moving in the right direction now, so that when the timing is right you will be in a better position to move forward.
3. I need a solid plan or nobody will take me seriously.
Reframe: I can do this step by step and start getting feedback from day one so that I can embark on my new adventure with confidence.
Asking for advice from people you trust is a great way to help you define your plan for change. Asking family and friends is often our first point of call. But remember that although they of course want to be helpful, sometimes they may have an invested interest in the outcome, which could influence the advice they offer. Often, a better direction to go is to get feedback from people who are in similar situations, as they will be able to offer valuable and relevant insights. If you don’t know anyone personally, head online to a career forum for some helpful advice.
4. I am too old to make a big change in my life.
Reframe: I am fortunate to have so much experience to draw from, which will help make the change easier.
When we finish high school, we’re all told that it’s time to choose a career path. What do you want to study? What job do you want to do? What career do you want for your life? But how are we supposed to make such enormous decisions, when we’re only just old enough to drive a car? As we grow older, our tastes, interests and passions develop and mature in ways that we could never predict when we’re younger. But the truth of the matter is that you’re never too old to make a change, and you’re never too old to live the life you dream of. Rather than using your age as an excuse, focus on the fact that you have valuable experience that will serve you well in your next pursuit. Rather than focusing on the past, look to the future by visualising where you are going and the steps you’ll need to take to get there.
5. I should be fearless.
Reframe: I respect my fear, but will not let it paralyse me from taking steps towards achieving my dreams.
Fear is not only natural but is also inevitable, and can even be useful in certain circumstances. We need fear. It stops us from taking unreasonable risks. But it shouldn’t be something that stops you from making positive changes. So, strip away the unrealistic belief that you should be fearless in the face of change and rather focus on finding ways to manage your fear so that it doesn’t get in the way of moving forward. Acknowledge your fear and try to understand where it is coming from, allowing you take charge of it. Choose to rather focus on more productive feelings or actions and your fear will soon become background noise to your positive mindset.
Getting your mind to work for you instead of against you can be a tricky thing. On Tuesday the 17th April 2018 I hosted a free mini-masterclass on the topic 'The 3 core elements of a thriving mind' it is still available in our Facebook group TAC She Sisterhood a group of likeminded women on a journey to create lives and careers we love, come and join us!
Have a wonderful day my friend!
HANNA GIRLING, wife, mother, business owner, mindset coach, sport enthusiast and forever an optimist.