This year has brought a whirlwind of change at a whole new magnitude. We also know it is not looking to go away just yet.
For some people, this has provided an opportunity to rethink what they are doing. What life and career they want to build. For others, this change has been forced upon them.
Whether you are facing redundancy, returning to work after a break or just not enjoying your job or career - embarking on a career change journey can be daunting.
It is easy to be torn between the ideas of ‘what we want to do’ and ‘what we should do’ and for that very reason, we stay stuck and keep exploring idea after idea. Getting no closer to making the career change we want and need.
When it comes to successfully making a career change we need to take action forward but we also need to know what is holding us back. To help you figure out what is holding you back we’ve outlined three common reasons why people stay stuck and what to do instead.
Reason 1: Thinking I don't Have the Time
Finding time can be tricky, most people are already juggling so many things, work, family and a home to look after. Therefore to find the time to sit down and figure out what you want career-wise can seem like an impossible task.
The truth is that it doesn't take a long time to relaunch your career. It only needs to take 15 minutes per day.
You can find that time before the kids wake up. Or during lunch time. Maybe swap 15 of your Netflix time to work on your career change? Do whatever you need to do to find those 15 minutes to work on this so that you can find the right career and make your dream life happen.
Think of where you'll be in a few months if you invest and carve out a little time everyday.
Reason 2: Looking for the perfect job
Finding the right career isn’t particularly hard or complicated but there are so many moving pieces and potential failure points along the way. What employment type to go for? What salary expectations do I have? Can I find a career that offers the right work-life balance? These are just some of the many questions you’ll have to answer along the way.
Most people approach their career relaunch as finding ‘the perfect job’, a job with complete flexibility, full-time pay, the right stimulation, perfect amount of travel, and so on. Trying to find this job can easily become a never-ending journey.
Instead, it’s about finding the right career, a career that will help build your best life. To do that it is important that you separate out your career requirements from the things in your career that will be ‘nice to have’.
Simply do this by writing down everything you would like for your career to bring you. When you have done that you put each item in either the ‘requirement’ column or the ‘nice to have’ column.
Lastly, remember to priortise all the items in each column that way assessing each career alternative will be a whole lot easier.
Reason 3: Believing ‘I don't have the skills or experiences I need to make a complete career change’
Making a career change can feel daunting. It's easy to think you don't have the skills or experience you need. You look at your CV and finding no experience for what you really want to be doing
The truth is you have what you need. Whether you are looking to get employed in a new industry, go for a completely different role or start your own business you have everything you need to get started. In addition to your professional skills you have a wealth of knowledge and experience that you have gained throughout your life, you only look in the right place to see it.
Look back at your professional roles, map out ALL the skills you have gained. Ask yourself what skills each role brought you that relates to your new career. After that look at your life outside your CV, what projects and roles have you taken on. What skills have you developed from these.
Take the time to do this and you will surely see that you have everything you need to pursue the right career.
A crucial part of successfully making a career change is to take action. To help you on the way we have created ‘The Career Relaunch Toolkit’ you can grab your free copy here.
Now, decide what you need to do next to make your career change happen!
Deciding to take the plunge and change your career can be daunting.
It means moving away from what you know and have experience in, to pursue something that has no guarantees for success.
Essentially, it’s stepping out of your comfort zone, which is the only way to truly grow and develop.
To prepare yourself for this big change and to make the transition easier and more enjoyable, it’s vital that you build up your confidence.
Here’s a look at some practical ways that you can build your confidence to take on a change in your career.
People tend to put you in a box based on the experience and skills related to your recent roles.
But don’t forget about all the transferable skills you have learnt along the way that are applicable across multiple industries!
Documenting these skills is often a useful exercise, whether for yourself or to show to a potential employer.
Think about the soft skills that you use in your day-to-day activities; presentation, management, negotiation and sales skills for example can be extremely useful across various industries and jobs.
Identify All Your Strengths
Everyone has certain strengths that are unique to them.
To build your confidence it’s worth analysing what your strengths are and how these can be applied to your new career.
Think beyond hard and soft skills and focus on personality traits that set you apart in the workplace.
You can even ask your current colleagues their opinion, to give you another perspective.
Preparation and Planning
Being prepared for something is the best way to build confidence around it.
Perhaps this means coming up with a contingency plan for the worst-case scenarios, or building up savings that can serve as a safety net in the changeover period.
Instead of rushing into a new career, allow yourself the time to explore your options and learn all you can about your new industry and role.
Take a short course, talk to people who have made similar transitions, read articles and listen to podcasts.
It won’t be long before you’re confident enough to make the big leap!
One Step at a Time
Often, simply taking action, even if it’s in a small way, can help you build your confidence and keep you motivated to keep moving forward.
This doesn’t mean you should make a drastic change like quitting your job or signing up for a new degree.
But taking a small step, even if it’s simply sending an email, connecting with someone on LinkedIn or doing some research into your new career choice, can often leave you feeling more confident as you start moving and building momentum in the right direction.
Find Your Support
Changing careers can often leave you feeling quite alone, as the people around you may not understand why you want to move in a new direction.
To feel confident in your decision it’s important to find people who are supportive of you and that can help keep you motivated.
Whether this support comes in the form of an online or offline community, a mentor in your career of choice, a good friend or an encouraging family member, the main thing is that you have someone you can talk to about your journey.
If you are thinking about a career change and want to make sure you avoid the most commonly made mistakes? Then grab our free toolkit that also shares what you should do instead. You can download it here
Have a fantastic day!
Decision-making is tough at the best of times. But making a decision that goes against the norms of society, popular opinion, or the beliefs of those closest to you, can feel downright impossible. Whether you’re deciding to leave a successful career to follow your true passions, or choosing not to have children despite the pressures to start a family, there will always be people around you who will tell you that the choice you are making is wrong.
But just because your choices don’t fit the traditional mould, doesn’t mean that you should be too afraid to do what is right for you. Here’s four steps that can help you make those big decisions that go against the grain.
1. How does it make you feel?
Imagine making the difficult decision and taking the unpopular plunge. Picture yourself in the scenario and then ask yourself how it makes you feel. Make sure that when you do this self-reflection exercise you’re as honest with yourself as possible. You may be surprised by the feelings that come up.
2. What does your future look like?
When making any decision, it’s important to look forward and have a vision of what your life will be and also what the implications of that choice will be, as opposed to simply focusing on how the decision will impact you right now. Try to picture what your life will be like in five, even ten, years’ time. Where will you be financially, geographically, emotionally? Will the decision you make today have a positive or negative impact on your life?
3. What are your regrets?
Imagine yourself as an old person looking back on your life and reflecting on it. Will you have regrets later on about a decision you make today? Will you have bigger regrets if you don’t make the tough decision that goes against the norm. It’s sometimes easy to get caught up in your feelings and emotions, but taking a reflective look on your life can help you to get some perspective.
4. Who is in control?
The most important thing to remember when making any decision that may go against the grain, is that it is you, and only you, that will have to live your life, so why should you allow others to control it? Make sure that you’re prioritising your own happiness and investing in a life that you want to live. And remember, that if people truly care about you, they will support you in your decision even if it means your life will be different to the one they imagined for you.
Hopefully these steps will make it a bit easier to make that decision that goes against the grain. If your decision is about starting a new career, then watch our free masterclass 'How To Create A New Career Where You Thrive'. It will outline the steps you need to take, and make your decision a little bit easier. You can watch it here.
Remember it is never too late to create a life you love!
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!
The advent of the internet has created a world of opportunities for those who prefer not to be tied down to an office. People around the globe have found creative ways to craft careers to match their lives, instead of trying to make their lives. So, whether you dream of working from the comfort of your own home, having more flexibility in your life or simply to have a career you can take with you wherever you go or move, here are 4 creative ways to make these dreams come to life.
Go with your experience.
Perhaps the easiest and safest way to start a new business is to focus on what you’re already good at and what you know best. Look at your CV and evaluate where your strengths lie and what skills set you apart. Make sure you focus on the value that you’re able to offer, as this will be your competitive edge within your market. You can do this by simply asking yourself how your expertise will allow you to help people or improve their lives? The next step is to challenge yourself to look beyond the core activities of your most recent role and see how your skills can be applied in different ways. Is there the opportunity to use these skills to start your own consultancy? Or if you enjoy training people, perhaps you can focus on coaching people in your field as opposed to offering these services yourself.
Follow your passion.
To have a truly meaningful life, you need to be passionate about what you do, especially when it comes to starting your own business. Do you have a hobby or passion that could be turned into a business? Maybe you have a knack for writing funny slogans? Or spend all your free time making the most beautiful greeting cards for your friends and family? Whatever your passion, perhaps it’s time to consider making it into your paycheck. As the saying goes, if you love what you do, you’ll never work a day in your life.
Meet a need.
Another good way to start a business is to identify a gap in the market, and find a way to fill it. This way you’re sure to build up a strong customer base quickly, taking some of the risk out of starting your own venture. Plus, it’s great to feel as though you are making people’s lives better with your product or service. Is it difficult to find a good tailor in your area? Are there no good coffee spots on peak morning traffic routes? Is there a global trend that is yet to find its way to your city? Whatever the need may be, if you’re able to offer a good solution, you’re in business!
Follow your dream.
Do you daydream of a life you wish you had? Start a business that is line with achieving that dream and you’ll be sure to stay dedicated, as every step you take will be a step towards achieving your ultimate goal. If you didn’t have to deal with the limitations of money, work permits or education, what would you do? If you could choose anything in the world to be remembered for, what would it be? By connecting with this long-term vision for the future and making a solid plan for today, you’ll be able to start moulding your life into exactly what you want it to be.
Those were four different ways to start a new career, then there are also a number of things to avoid. Download our free guide '5 mistakes to avoid when starting a new career' to learn what they are and what to do instead. You can get it here
Have an amazingly good day!
There are many reasons why you could decide to make a career change. Perhaps you’ve lost your passion, you’ve found a new interest that you want to pursue, or you simply your life has changed and your previous career is not a fit anymore. Whatever the reason, changing careers is a huge decision that shouldn’t be taken lightly. Before making the big leap, it’s important to put in the leg work so that you’re well-equipped when choosing a new career path that is right for you. We’ve put together these 4 easy steps to help plan a major career move.
Before jumping into a new career, it’s important to first take a step back to evaluate your current situation. Why are you looking for a new career? What is working for you right now and what is not? A good way to investigate this is to keep a journal, noting down your daily reactions to tasks and situations. If you are currently working, you will be able to gain better perspective on exactly what it is about your situation that is or isn’t right. Is it the people you work with, the company culture, or simply the tasks you’re required to do? If your desire for change is based on personal relationships, perhaps you should consider a new job in the same industry before moving in a whole new direction. Also, consider alternative roles that would allow you to make use of the industry knowledge you’ve worked hard to gain. If you are on a career break this exercise will be hugely valuable to reconnect with yourself and understand better what kind a career path you should embark on.
The next step is to spend some time assessing your interests, values and skills. Think about where you have been the most successful in the past and how various roles have made you feel? Remember that it’s important to align your core values and skills with your career path. Perhaps it’s worth taking a few online tests to help you determine where your strengths and interests lie. Once you have an idea of your skills and passions, try brainstorming some ideas for career alternatives that will best align with these. It’s always helpful to get an outsiders perspective too, so make sure you run your thinking past friends, family, or your mentor. If you’re struggling to come up with ideas, a career counsellor can help make some recommendations too.
By now, you should have a good list of potential career options. But before you make a choice, you first need to find out as much as you can about each option. Is there an opportunity for you to volunteer or freelance in the field to get a taste of what it would be like? Reach out to personal or professional contacts who are currently working in your field of interest to get an insider’s viewpoint, or set up a job shadow to get a first-hand look at what the job will entail.
The evaluation process should not only help you narrow down your ideal career path, but should also help you assess the areas where you need to upskill. Research some education opportunities that would help you bridge the gap for a smoother transition into your new field. Evening classes or online options are a great option for upskilling yourself, while still working in your current job. Sign up for seminars, talks and online tutorials; the more you can learn now, the easier it will be to make your career change a success.
If you are now ready to make this change and create your new career and would like to know about the most common mistakes - and what to do instead? Then download our free guide here
Remember, it is never too late to create a life and career you love!
Have a great day!
Bye for now.
Most of us spend more time at work than anywhere else, which is why it’s so important to make sure that all this time is spent wisely. Of course, going through ups and downs at work is completely natural and you may feel like pulling your hair out at the end of a tough week, but how can you tell when it’s actually time to quit? Making this choice can be confusing, so we’ve put together this list of 5 ways you can tell it’s time to leave your job.
1. You dread going to work every day.
We all know the feeling of wanting to roll over and go back to sleep when the Monday morning alarm rings. But if the very thought of your job brings up emotions of anxiety, dismay, fear or dread, it’s probably time to get out of there. Try to pinpoint exactly what it is about your work that is making you feel this way. Is it the people you work with, the tasks you’re doing, or have you simply lost your passion? By understanding the cause of the negativity, you’ll be better equipped to plot your next steps.
2. Other parts of your life are suffering.
No job is worth sacrificing your health or important relationships. Are you struggling to sleep, gaining weight, feeling depressed and anxious, or suffering from headaches and frequent illness? These could all be signs that you are overworked or overstressed. Is your partner constantly complaining that you spend too much time at the office, or do you come home so tired you can’t even enjoy spending time with your kids? When your job starts to affect your personal life or health, this is a major red flag that something isn’t right. Try to find ways to minimise your stress and workload, but if you can’t perhaps it’s time to find an alternative solution.
3. The work environment is really bad.
When a company culture is full of blame, infighting and Nobody wants to be stuck on a sinking ship, so if you feel as though the company you work for is circling the drain then it could time to look for jobs elsewhere. Look out for signs such as losing big clients, tighter budgets and resignations within upper management. To excel in your own career, you need to be a part of a company that is growing and developing, not one that is struggling to make ends meet.
4. You aren’t learning or advancing in your career.
One of the easiest ways to know it’s time to leave a job is when you feel as though you aren’t learning anymore. All too often people find themselves stuck in the same role for too long, making them complacent or bored. If you feel as though you’ve been pigeonholed in a position with little chance of being promoted, especially if you have asked and made it clear, then it’s not worth hanging around. Although it may feel comfortable, a truly fulfilling job should always challenge, upskill or develop you in some way.
5. You have a bad boss.
Do you feel that you know more than your boss? Are they incompetent or take credit for your work? Does your boss blame you when things go wrong? These are all signs of a bad boss! If you have a boss who leaves you feeling miserable at the end of every day, it’s time to leave your job before you lose your confidence altogether. Maybe there is another opportunity within the same company, if so explore, if not then time to see what else is out there.
Maybe you now know it is time for something new. Then download our free guide '5 mistakes to avoid when starting a new career' so you can learn what they are and what to do instead. You can download it here
Remember, it is never too late to create a career and life that you love.
Maternity leave is an incredible time, where you have the freedom to connect with your baby and adjust to life with your new addition. But as wonderful as this time is, returning to work after maternity leave can feel daunting. Often time spent away from the office leaves you feeling insecure, plagued with self-doubt over whether you’re competent enough to return to the workplace. Will people still take you seriously? Will you be on top of industry trends after such a long break? Are you still capable after months of baby talk? On top of these worries, mothers also have to deal with the added stress and guilt of leaving their new baby with a minder or at a crèche, while figuring out how to squeeze in a whole new baby routine around an already demanding workday.
That’s why it’s not surprising that a new study shows that both women and men notice a decrease in self-confidence when leaving work to have children, although men tend to recover far quicker than women when they do return to their work routine. For those of you who are feeling nervous about the shift back into work mode, here are five simple tips to help you build up your confidence after maternity leave.
1. Recognise your new skills Try to avoid feeling like you’re less that you were before, when the reality is that you’re better! Reflect on all the new skills you’ve learnt over the past few months and think about how you can effectively transfer these skills into the workplace. Everything from time management and planning, to problem solving and crisis management, not to mention negotiation skills and financial management experience; having a baby truly is a steep learning curve, filled with plenty of useful knowledge that can translate into a more productive employee.
2. Be clear on your role
Returning to work after maternity leave is a great opportunity to redefine your role and shape it into something that works for the new you. If you have an idea of a new direction you would like to move in, or even a new role altogether, schedule some time with your boss or manager to discuss it before you have a chance to fall back into your old position. Even if you’re happy with your previous position, it’s worth chatting to your boss so that they can outline what your role is, as some things may have changed in your absence. Starting off with a clear understanding of your role and responsibilities will help you feel in control and less overwhelmed.
3. Ask for flexibility if you need it
Before you return to work it’s worth wrapping your head around different ways that you’re able do your job, that may better integrate with your new lifestyle. Of course, some employers will be less flexible than others, but you'll never know what the possibilities are unless you ask. Remember that in the modern workplace, less importance is placed on the number of hours spent at the office and more on your ability to produce results (regardless of where you are or when you do it). When you have the discussion, make sure to emphasise the value you add and the quality of your work, as opposed to the number of hours you put in. As a mother, you’ll soon realise that you need to learn to expect the unexpected, and having the flexibility to stay home to look after a sick child can be vital to whether you’re happy in your job or not. Having a good understanding of what will be possible in these scenarios will help put your mind at ease, allowing you to better focus on your work.
4. Get a mentor If you’re feeling unsure of your career path and worry that you may have veered off track by taking such a long break, it can often help to get advice and support from someone you admire. If you feel awkward asking them to be your official mentor, simply make friends with them and ask for their advice. They will be flattered that you value their opinion, and getting an outsiders perspective can really help you plot the next stage of your career, building your confidence as you go.
5. Make sure you feel good about yourself
Although not strictly necessary, getting a fresh haircut or buying a new work outfit can work wonders in terms of boosting your confidence on your return to work, especially during those first few nerve-wracking days. After giving birth, many women tend to feel self-conscious about their appearance. Investing in a few new items can make you feel great, and can also help you separate your work identity by doing away with your daily mom-wear and maternity clothes. Another option is to update your makeup, to enhance your beauty and boost your confidence. Either way, it’s a good idea to dress up a bit those first few days, as you’re sure to feel better about yourself when you see the way that others react to you.
Are you feeling worried about returning to work, or maybe you are already back and managed to built up your confidence. In our facbook group, TAC She Sisterhood, there is a whole community of women on a similar journey as you. Join and share your tips and get support from others on your journey to create a life and career that you love.
Men get paid more than women. Whether it’s top Hollywood actresses earning less than their male counterparts, or the recent BBC gender pay gap scandal, this is the message that’s being told every day in the media. But as hard as it may be to hear, it’s important to understand the role that we, as women, play in this bias. Could we be partly to blame?
We have somehow been groomed by society to feel lucky when we’re offered a job, to believe that our great results come only because of a team effort, and to instinctively shy away from the conversations that could get us more money. But now it’s time for us to do our part in changing this. It’s time to ask for a raise!
This situation can be a difficult one to navigate for many people, especially when you feel you aren’t yet equipped; but that’s no reason not to learn and then do it. It’s important to arm yourself first: research, strategize and take action. To help you on your way, we’ve put together these five key steps to take when readying yourself for that all important salary conversation.
1. Do your research
There are many elements involved in how you’re measured at work. Do you understand what is really expected of you, how you can create the most value for your company, and what your growth path is within your workplace? Put in the time to do your research properly and speak to your HR manager if you need to – once you know what’s expected of you and how you can progress it becomes easier for you to track. Compare how you’re getting paid to industry standards and use that as a benchmark for your negotiations. This helps you start the conversation with clear objectives in mind.
2. Be specific and clear in why you deserve it Make a list of what you’ve achieved in the time you’ve been doing your job. Don’t shy away from showing tangible results, how you’ve contributed to the bottom line of the business, as well as how you’ve met and surpassed the expectations that have been set for you. Make sure that you’re focused on what you have to offer that’s unique and specific to you. But remember to avoid comparison with other employees - no one gets a raise from badmouthing or devaluing the work that others do.
3. Choose the right moment
As with most things, there is a time and a place for salary conversations. Speaking to your manager about a raise when they’ve just laid off people isn’t one of those. Neither is after losing a client, or a manager leaving, or even when your work has been mediocre. Choose a time when you’ve done consistently well at work, when you’ve shown not only your worth to your team but also your drive to work to reach new heights. While waiting for the right time is important, do not wait until review time or for someone else to note the work you’re doing. Be your own cheerleader and let your confidence in your work shine through.
4. Can you compromise?
Be ready to be told no, but have other options. Your company may not be in a financial position to offer you the monetary compensation you feel you deserve, but should this happen, what else can they offer? Perhaps you need flexible hours, reimbursements for your work commute or even support to study and get training. A compromise can almost be made, so make sure you have a backup plan in place before having the conversation.
5. Be patient Negotiations take time. Be prepared to wait for a decision to made after having the conversation. You may also have to have a series of conversations, before a final verdict is decided. Be patient and know that it will be worth it in the end!
As they often say, practise makes perfect. Why not, have the salary conversation with a friend or family member first. Their critique and feedback on your approach or content may help you get to a place where you negotiate to win that raise every time.
HANNA GIRLING, wife, mother, business owner, mindset coach, sport enthusiast and forever an optimist.