After spending 10 years in the financial industry, I decided to (finally) take the plunge and figure out how to change career paths into Web Design. After spending so much time in one industry, it was scary to jump ship and start anew… however, it was so worth it! If you’re thinking or struggling to figure out how to change jobs, here are six things I’ve learned that I hope will motivate you to make the change!
The skills you learn from one industry are transferable to another
Many of the skills you learn from your current job are transferable to a new career even if it’s in a completely different industry. The time that you spend fine-tuning your skills in one career can transfer over nicely to another.
Take customer service skills, for example, how you learn how to interact with and treat customers will always be a skill you can take with you in life (not just in a career). Many skills aren’t just industry-specific and the time you spent learning one skill can help you succeed in a new industry. It may even give you a leg up on the competition!
Changing industries might seem like a step back but it’ll ultimately be a step forward
It might seem scary to change industries or even figure out how to change jobs after you spent so much time building a career in a specific one. However, if you notice yourself becoming burnt out or bored at work, now might be a good time to re-evaluate your goals and start learning how to change career paths.
One thing that I noticed about myself was I had developed the “Sunday scaries” where I would dread Sunday night because I knew Monday morning was right around the corner. To me, that meant that I needed to move on from what I was doing into a new, exhilarating career. Once you do make the leap, you’ll notice that you’ll be more refreshed, engaged at work, and happier overall. I sure did!
Make a list of your favorite skills and hobbies to find out what you’d like to do for a career
Are you the creative type? Do you love numbers? Are you into photography? Do you love gardening? What makes you, YOU? Grab a piece of paper or open up your computer and jot down an “everything about you” list. Just do a brain dump of everything you stand for and everything you love doing.
After you do that, evaluate your list and you’ll notice a pattern of what you like and don’t like doing. This will help point you in the right direction of what you should do for a living.
You don’t need to go back to a traditional school to change careers
Learning how to code helped me gain the necessary basic skills to jump from finance into web design. I knew nothing about coding when I started and didn’t want to spend years going back to get another degree.
You don’t need to spend thousands of dollars on a college degree to become a Web Designer. There are tons of programs out there that will teach you how to code. Some programs are free while others you need to pay for them. Education is everywhere and you can always teach yourself something new at any time.
If you’d like some resources on how to start coding or even start exploring technology, here are a couple of my favorites:
This does a great job at breaking down information into digestible, bite-size pieces. You can focus on a specific skill such as Front End Developer, Designer Track, or UX Design. Or if you don’t know exactly what path you’d like to pursue you can choose their Break into Tech program which gives you access to almost all of their courses. You get lifetime access to their content and all their programs come with a 14-day money-back guarantee so you can try it out.
They have amazing programs that you can get started with either with a Techdegree or individual courses. They offer a 7-day free trial so you can try it before you commit!
If you don’t necessarily want to go into coding but want to explore technology, Google has some amazing courses to explore such as Project Management, UX Design, Data Analytics, and IT Support via their Grow with Google job-ready certification program.
Also, there’s always trusty ole YouTube. I know a lot of people who have self-taught themselves on many different subjects just by watching youtube videos.
Every day is an interview
One of my very close friends (and former coworker) taught me that every day is an interview. She couldn’t be more accurate! I’ve had the pleasure of working with a variety of different people from all walks of life. You spend the majority of your week working with amazing people and creating some awesome friendships.
When someone leaves a company, it necessarily isn’t goodbye because you may cross-work paths and work together again someday. Some of my colleagues have become colleagues again at different companies. Cultivating and keeping relationships with your coworkers is one of the easiest and most rewarding ways to keep your network alive and healthy.
It’s never too late to change career paths
I’ve always been envious of people that know what they want to do right out of college. Thankfully, you can always learn new skills and trades and it’s never too late to learn how to change paths, especially nowadays with technology.
Change is scary at any age and I must admit that I was afraid to change paths because of my age but I’m so glad I did as it’s just a number. I’ve met people in their early 20s who thought it was too late to change careers and people in their 50s who felt the same way… but they successfully made the change and were much happier. No matter how old you are it’s NEVER too late to follow your heart and go for your dreams! Change is uncomfortable but don’t let that fear steal your dreams.
I hope these words of encouragement have helped light the fire to pursue your next career path and help you learn how to change career paths! Remember, you only live once so go after your dreams and the sky’s the limit!
And, as Shia LaBeouf would say… “Just do it! Don’t let your dreams be dreams.”