Have the courage to make the changes YOU deserve!
How to Figure Out Your Next Career Move and Make It Happen
What’s next for you and your career? Is it time for a big leap to a totally different job? Or do you want to move forward within the same company? Are you chasing promotion or daydreaming about a completely different job?
Career moves can be drastic and life changing. They can also be modest and subtly transformative. Both are valid and exciting! Career moves can also be a source of great confusion. How do you figure out what to do next?
Figuring Out Your Next Career Move
There are a few ‘big picture’ things you can do to help figure out your next career move. You might not identify the exact role or position you want to apply for, but hopefully you’ll be able to narrow down your search. Then you can start getting specific about what you do next.
- Consider what you want life to feel like
The first step towards building a life you love is envisioning the end result. You deserve to thrive rather than just survive at work. What would that look like for you? As well as your personal life, think about everything connected to your career. Do you want to work from home? How long is your ideal commute? What sort of company culture would you like to be part of? You might find it helpful to journal about these things or create some kind of vision board.
- See what’s out there
Looking at available jobs, researching your current field and exploring different industries altogether is a great way to kickstart your search for the right role. This isn’t about finding something to apply for now (although you never know – the perfect job might pop up). It’s about discovering the possibilities. When you’re reading job descriptions, pay attention to how you feel. What excites you? What feels challenging or interesting? Do you have the skills and qualifications they’re looking for? If not, do you feel motivated to acquire them?
- Identify where your interests and expertise overlap
Your passions and interests are important, but as well as knowing what you want to do next, you also need to know you can excel at it and get hired. Try not to fixate on direct experience. Instead focus on transferrable skills that complement the industry, niche or role you’re drawn to.
What’s Holding You Back?
Maybe you know what you want to do next, but making it happen feels tough. There could be many different reasons for this, and I can’t address them all in this post. Here are a couple of things that seem to pop up repeatedly when I’m coaching clients through big career changes…
- Imposter Syndrome
I talk about imposter syndrome a lot because I know how common it is. So many people, especially women, are missing out on big things because they don’t feel deserving, worthy or able to embrace them. Imposter syndrome can be sneaky too. Are your justifications for staying put genuine or does moving forward bring up a lot of feelings? Do you believe you’re unworthy of promotion? Are you scared of being ‘found out’? Learn how to spot imposter syndrome and what to do about it.
- Fear of Getting it Wrong
Here’s what I want you to remember: there is no perfect next step. Our careers evolve over time, so you shouldn’t be stressing about getting your trajectory exactly right. Building a career is a process and understanding that is a part of succeeding. As I’ve said before, I believe each stage of your career journey is an opportunity to learn something about yourself. In the end, career choices that feel like missteps often turn out to be the most informative and transformational. That's definitely been the case for me!
If You Do One Thing This Week
Work through the exercises above and see where you end up. Bookmark this post so you can come back to it and read my advice again when you’re ready to make your next move a reality.
Photography credits: Captured by Megan Wilson