3 Tips for Transitioning to Your Dream Job
Ready to make a change in your life?
Want to create an exit plan from your job?
Do you have a dream career or business that you’ve been wanting to explore?
I was talking with a client about transitioning from her 30 year career in the education system to the next phase of her career life. I asked her what she envisioned herself doing. She wasn’t sure about what she wanted to do but she was very sure about what she didn’t want to do; no more children with behavior problems, no more demanding parents, no more useless meaningless paperwork. But what did she want to do? She really hadn’t a clue. She had spent such a long time in one career, she had little knowledge of the opportunities that were available. In addition, she didn’t know how to evaluate her personal skills and strengths.
Many people take a reactive approach to moving into their next career. Rather than looking inward and identifying values, talents, skills and personal characteristics, they begin by taking a reactive approach and survey the job scene. What is available? What is the new hot career? What pays the most? You get the idea. Instead, take a creative approach. Stay in the driver’s seat and create work you love.
Three steps to move from your day job to your dream job:
- Develop clarity– The is the first step, the most critical step and often the step that is overlooked. Take a creative approach and set aside some quiet time and make a yes and a no list. What are the tasks that you most enjoy doing, and that use your abilities well? What is the environment that you thrive in? What are the values that you want to embody in your career? Then make a list of the no’s. What do you not want to do any more? What are tasks that you do well but no longer want to tackle? What are values that you don’t want to be a part of your career? Decide what on each list is non-negotiable.
- Research the possibilities– Now that you have a general description of what you would like your dream job to look like, begin to research the possibilities. What is a field that excites you? What career piques your interest? What career meets the criteria on the yes list? Develop a possibilities list and begin researching companies or businesses online. If your plan is to start your own business, find similar businesses that model what you hope to create. Once you have identified several options contact the business and set up a reverse interview. Meet either in person or on the phone and find out everything that you can about the career. This is not when you ask for a job, you are still in the research phase so ask away about everything you want to know. However, be aware that this could turn out to be a potential employer, so be sure to leave the impression of a curious and competent worker.
- Go all IN!– This process is not for the casual job seeker who is willing to take the first job that pops up no matter whether it fits their profile or style. It’s not for someone whose dream job is lying on the beach while the money is deposited in their bank account (that’s called a paid vacation.) Instead, this is a process for someone who really wants to create meaningful work that matters. Creating that dream job is a job in itself. Make the commitment and know that it is worth it in the end.
Ready to step out of your comfort zone and gain some clarity on what is possible?
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You can fail at what you don’t want so you might as well take a chance on doing what you love. Jim Carrey