How to Successfully Manage a Career Transition

With employment rates rising as public health restrictions ease, many Canadians are feeling the itch to find a new career path as economic conditions improve. Of the workers planning to change careers in the coming months, many cite concerns about career advancement as their primary reason for leaving. Others say the pandemic has caused them to shift their focus and analyze their skillsets. But while moving into a new role can sound tempting, there is plenty to consider and prepare for when making this decision. Planning a career transition of your own? Read on to learn the best ways to prepare so that when opportunity strikes, you’re ready.

1. Ask Yourself What You (Really) Want

When you start considering looking for a new job, it’s a clear sign that you need to be checking in with yourself about your priorities and longer term direction. Consider asking yourself what your personal requirements are when it comes to pay, schedule flexibility, remote working options, and growth potential. This way, you’ll know ahead of time what you aren’t willing to compromise on, and it’ll make your decisions easier down the road.


2. Set a Timeline

Once you’ve fully committed to starting your career transition, it’s time to hold yourself accountable. It’s easy to decide to find a new job “one day”, but without an idea of how your job search will look, it can be hard to put your plan into action. Once you have a good idea of the types of roles you’re open to and the things you want out of your new job, it’s always a good idea to give yourself a timeline to complete all of the things necessary to make your move. Need to brush up on some skills? Set aside a month or two to take a refresher course. Planning to shop around before you accept a job offer? It’s good to have a date range in mind that you can give potential employers should an opportunity arise.

3. Build Your Network

It’s a great time to start leveraging your connections and finding new additions to your network – recruiting efforts are ramping up and hiring managers and recruiters alike are on the hunt for talented people to join their teams. If you were quiet on LinkedIn before, try becoming a little more active and engaging with content that interests you. Check out local networking opportunities, in-person or online. You might even consider taking a part-time course or online program in your industry to keep your skills sharp and your connections fresh.


4. Prepare for Change

Despite the most careful planning, changing your career path can be jarring. When you’re getting ready to move into a new role, it can be tempting to place the majority of your focus on your professional life. But major life changes require mental preparation, too – that’s why it’s always a good idea to take an inventory of how you’re feeling, the impact of a new career on your day-to-day routine, and the way that a new schedule or focus may impact the rest of your life. Take some time before starting a new role to get in a mindset that will prepare you for what’s to come and keep you on the right track.

Posted by Emily Couves