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Now more than ever; completely changing directions in an individual’s career has become commonplace. When a career change is done correctly, it could be most rewarding. According to Office for National Statistics in the United Kingdom, job stayers generally earn a higher hourly wage than people who change jobs, but individuals who change their jobs experience higher pay growth than job stayers. Also, 52% of people in the UK dream about changing careers; however, the majority are not sure how to go about making the career change a reality.

Are you ready to change your career?

Here is how to pivot successfully:

Do an internal check to get clarity on whether you need a Career change.

You should be on the lookout for the following signs:

*The feeling of being disengaged in your day-to-day work.

*A lack the energy and enthusiasm to get your work done.

*The feeling of dread waking up to go to your job in the morning.

*Staying on a career path simply because of the pay, power, or title it offers.

Identify your transferable skills. This is not about how many skills you have; in fact, it’s all about how you leverage the skills you currently have. The future belongs to those who have mastered several key skills and combine these skills in a creative way. So, it’s time to ask yourself, “Which of the skills I have are transferable? How can I combine my skills creatively?” When you are exploring the answers, you are getting ready for a career change.

Proactively learn new things. Let’s say you are keen to have a new career that requires a particular qualification – you would be well-advised to get that qualification as quickly as possible. Don’t stop learning. Apart from your technical skills, you have to cultivate soft skills (interpersonal skills) which will help you to stand out and be outstanding as well. Remember: Without people skills, technical skills will notwork.

Develop a strong network. Research shows that the best career pivots come from business connections as well as career contacts instead of family and friends. This is because family/friends and you share the same resources, whereas your acquaintances and you share different resources (and their resources are oftentimes exactly what you need). Focus on building strong social networks and nurture your networks by adding value and staying connected to your social network. Remember your network is your net worth.

Spruce up your CV and LinkedIn Profiles. Now that you have clarity on where you want to be, what you’ll need to do to get there, and how to pitch yourself in the best light, it’s time to update your CV and LinkedIn profile. This is the most important thing when you decide to change careers as this is the first thing the prospective employer or recruiter sees.

Share the news. Start telling people in your network that you’re making a change. The more you leverage your network, the better off you’ll be. Sharing the news also acts as an accountability measure and puts you in a position to act.

Take the leap. Leave the safety net. “Jump and you will find out how to unfold your wings as you fall”. We are more willing to take chances and do whatever it takes to make our dreams a reality when we know we do not have a cushion to fall back on.

Trust yourself!

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