How to Make a Creative Career Change

People change careers for a number of reasons. For one, they may have always dreamed of working in a different profession and just never knew how to break into the industry. Others may decide they want to look into different careers simply because their interests have changed. Whatever the reason, it’s bound to be a major project that requires a great deal of determination and research – but don’t let that discourage you. A report published in 2014 by The Conference Board found that more than half of Americans are unhappy with their jobs. A career change may be what alters your attitude about work for the better. When people are happy with their careers, they’re usually happier overall – not to mention, the quality of their work increases.

It’s important to give your career change the consideration it deserves. Because you don’t necessarily have much experience in this new field, you’ll need to adjust your expectations and plan accordingly. Here’s how to make a creative career change as seamless as possible:

Read up on your new career to make sure it's what you want.Read up on your new career to make sure it’s what you want.

Do your research

What is it about this field that interests you? Which skills do you need to build upon to break into the industry? Before you start looking for jobs in a different field, you need to do your research to make sure that it’s what you’re looking for. The Blue Sky Resumes blog warned those seeking a change to make sure they’re truly in search of a different career and not just a new job. There are many instances where people confuse being tired of their company or industry with losing passion for their careers. Start by searching through job postings of interesting positions and go from there. Read up on industry blogs and scour through helpful resources that provide you with genuine insight into your intended career path before you make the leap.

Look into professional development

You clearly have the passion for a new career, and you may have a natural knack for certain aspects of the field, but that’s not always enough to convince an employer to take a chance on you – especially in creative careers, where the competition can be quite fierce. You’ll likely need to spend some time building your resume and portfolio, and that could take a while. Look into professional development opportunities that can help further your knowledge of the industry and teach you skills that are valuable to your new career. Certificate programs, networking and educational events, and seminars are great ways to build your credibility. Join relevant groups and see what’s offered in your area.

“Recruiters can connect you with a position in their database.”

Work with a recruiter

It’s the job of those at creative staffing agencies to pair talented professionals with exciting opportunities that best utilize their skills and interests. A recruiter can connect you with a position in his or her extensive database of companies that are looking for qualified candidates. He or she can also help point you in the direction of effective tools and resources that will make you stand out from other applicants.

Know your strengths

Chances are that you’re interested in a new field because you know you’d be good at it. Play upon the skills you already have, and work on ones that are lacking. While you might initially feel discouraged because of your lack of directly relevant experience, you might not be that far off from landing the job of your dreams. The LinkedIn Talent Blog noted that career changers often make some of the best hires. Not only is their passion and enthusiasm typically greater than that of others, but they’re also able to bring with them new ideas and insight. Don’t lose sight of these advantages. Changing careers is challenging, but not impossible.

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