Do you have the required skills to make a career change? Have you developed enough diverse skills to cross over to a new career? What do you need to put in your resume to get you in the door for that ellusive interview?
There are a number of ways to highlight the skills that you possess to make you a good fit for a job, even if it is a whole new career. What do you need to consider?
- Look for transferrable skills.
- What skills have you developed in previous jobs that will make you a good fit for the new position? Don’t forget to consider volunteer work, community service, school experience, etc, as part of that skills set. All of these avenues can be included in your resume to showcase your experience.
- Highlight a meaningful “skills and attributes” section in your resume.
- This will allow you to list all of those qualifications that you have without tying them to a specific position. Remember, though, to keep them meaningful. Simply stating that you are a good communicator really isn’t sufficient. You need to validate those “soft skills” with a statement, i.e. “have demonstrated excellent communication skills by dealing with …”\
- Make sure you understand the company and the industry to which you are going, and be able to identify and highlight the traits that are important in that field. Once you identify the required skills that are important, make sure you highlight them in your resume. Remember, targeting your resume is key.
Of course, any time that you are considering a career change, you have to first understand what is motivating the change and ensure that you are taking the right steps for the right reasons. Maybe it’s not a career change at all that you want or need, but just simply a new job in the same field. And be realistic. If you are currently a teacher, and you aspire to be a doctor, you are going to need more than transferrable skills to move in that direction. Do your homework. Make sure you know the industry standards and, if you truly want to move in that new direction, be prepared to take the necessary steps to meet that goal. If it’s what you really want, it will be worth it.
If this seems like a very daunting exercise, and you’re not sure how to approach it, don’t be afraid to reach out to people in your chosen new field to get some insight and feedback, or maybe even do some volunteer work in that field so you really know what to expect. And if you need some more help with focusing your energy on how to proceed, engage the services of a Certified Professional Career Coach to help you move through the thinking stage and then on to action.
Do you know someone who is currently challenged with a career change decision? Feel free to share this post by using the share links at the top of this page. Also, if you’d like more career change assistance, feel free to check out the career coaching resource page.