Changing career direction: What factors do you need to consider?

Changing career direction is a serious move and should not be undertaken lightly. Gather information from various sources to confirm the prospects for you in the new career.

Have you thought about the following?

  • How similar is the new job area to my current job? To what extent can I picture myself doing the job? Can I work shadow someone doing the job to get a real feel for day-to-day activities and working conditions?
  • Is this new career area flourishing? Is there a real demand for people like me? Can I talk to someone who made a similar transition?
  • Finances - will I have to invest money in my own training? What about loss of earnings while training? What about going backwards to a lower starting salary?
  • Am I prepared to go back to the beginning and start my career again?
  • Family impact - will the family support study through peace and quiet and accept loss of income?
  • Age - will I have long enough in the career for employers to be interested in my training and work? Is this a career area where maturity and experience are valued? Will it be considered in my favour that I will be likely to remain loyal to this employer? Is this essentially a young person's industry?
  • Health - I want to do a job that will take account of my health or disability
  • Is there any way that I can test the idea by moving over gradually, such as working part-time or freelancing?
  • Does my situation actually demand that I change career or would changing employer suffice?

Now compile a thorough list of the issues that are important to you. Make a list of the positives and negatives of changing careers and of not changing careers. Enlist the help of family, friends, career mentor and other People resources in assessing your situation honestly and objectively.

Take a fresh look at yourself

Take a fresh look at yourself and examine your skills and experience , interests and values.  

Return to look at your career needs to consider personal and work factors that are important to you.

Start to compile all this information in your Career options grid