Sometimes it’s tough to know whether you’re simply unhappy with your job or if it’s your entire career field that you’re not satisfied with.
Read on for ways to determine whether you should change careers and a few tips on making the switch if it’s time.
Evaluate What You Don’t Like About Your Job
Before jumping into another career, evaluate what you don’t like about your job. Make a list of your complaints, and think about if they’re temporary or situational issues–like coworkers you don’t like, or a workplace location–or if they’re constant in your career field.
For example, if you don’t like the busy work you’re expected to do at an entry-level position, things might change as you move up the ladder. In that case, it might not be in your best interest to jump ship before you get the chance to get promoted.
But if your problems are more industry-wide, such as realizing you don’t actually like networking in a field that requires a lot of it, you may want to make a career change.
Look at Other Job Descriptions
Before you make any big career moves, check out some other job descriptions in your field and see if they differ from your experience at your current position. In addition, talk to some folks who have jobs like yours, and compare notes. If it looks like things aren’t likely to change anytime soon, changing careers might be in order.
Do Your Research
Start doing some research about other career fields, and take your time to do so as long as you’re currently employed. Look into not only what you’d be doing in a given position, but what kind of education and training it will take to get there.
Many people make the mistake of thinking about what they imagine a career field to be like. This time around, do your homework in-depth to ensure that whatever you’d be doing at a given job would be something you might want to do long-term.
Make an Exit Plan
Once you decide what other careers you might be interested in, start crafting an exit/transition plan. Start out by researching educational and/or vocational training programs in your area that you could complete online or part-time while working in your current job. Or, if you won’t need extensive education to change careers, start beefing up and tweaking your resume in preparation for the switch.