Switching to a new career? Here’s what you need to know
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Most of us know that switching to a different career, let alone looking for a new job in the same field, is tough, not to mention stressful. But what causes us to let go of our old jobs and look for new ones? Is it because we’re quitters? Is it because we’re lazy? Is it because we want higher pay? Or is it because we hate our boss? Lots of reasons compel us to leave our work for good.

Apart from inadequate compensation, we resign because we feel like we are not valued by the company. Or as they say, “We are not moving up the ladder.” It could be that we often get bypassed for that coveted position we believe we have earned or our efforts simply remain unacknowledged. Whichever the case, once we feel that we’re not growing or moving forward in our company, it’s a signal that it’s time to go.

More than being valued, we all want to work in an environment where we can grow as individuals while at the same time develop friendly relationships with those around us. At the very least, we want to work with people who neither infuriate nor torment us. While you can always ignore those co-workers who always manage to ruin your day, it’s a completely different matter when the office villain is your boss. Hence, when rare occasions of “friendly” reminders turn into constant reprimanding, all virtues of tolerance go out the window. And it’s not just us, as individuals, that we think about and consider when making career decisions. There’s always our family– which brings us to job stability. We’re forced to switch jobs because we’re afraid that the company we work for would one day close down and we’ll be left with little to nothing as severance pay. Better to leave now than wait for the boat to sink.

Finally, there’s the issue of work-life balance. While work is necessary to provide for our families, it shouldn’t get in the way of your time and relationship with them. What good is being overpaid if you’re overworked and estranged from your family?

So now that you’re set on looking for a new job, what’s your next move? First, you have to consider your skill set. What functions are you comfortable doing? What are your assets and strengths? If you’re targeting a new industry, it’s best to speak with people who are already in your target field to determine which of your skills are most valuable and easily transferable. Also, you have to consider your job experience. Are they related to your targeted job or industry? Will your previous experiences help in familiarizing you with new job functions? Finally, more than the compensation, consider the culture of the company you plan on applying to. What’s the management like? How’s the culture in the office?

You have to at least have an idea whether this new job will offer an environment where you can thrive and is a place worth spending most hours of your day. If it’s a job worth having, most likely, it’ll be a job worth keeping.