5 Ways to Test the Waters Before Diving into a New Career

career change tips

A new job: with fresh responsibilities, in a different industry, with another employer…

The prospect of starting a new career can sound incredibly exciting, and also incredibly intimidating.

Financial risk, self-doubt, and fear of change keep many of us stuck in jobs that aren’t a great fit. You deserve better! If you’re ready for a job change but afraid to dive in, here are five ways to “dip your toes in the water” before taking the plunge:

5 Ways to Explore New Career Options:

1. Look (inward) before you leap.

Before you make any move, it’s smart to consider why you want to make a change, your career goals, and how you could apply your transferable job skills to a different industry. In this post, “Job Skills that Transfer to Different Industries,” we share job skills that will serve you well in any position or industry. And in “Send Out a Career SOS,” you can learn how to move past your fear of changing careers.

2. Choose a “pool” that leverages your strengths.

If you’re exploring new career paths, use the opportunity to improve your alignment with your role and employer. The better your new career complements your natural strengths, soft skills, and personality, the more engaged and successful you’ll be throughout your career. In “Which Industry is Right for Your Future?” our recruiters help you understand which industries might be the best fit for you.

3. Consider volunteer work and internship opportunities.

Both allow you to gain practical, real-world experience in your desired field – while bolstering your resume.

4. Find a way to grow and change with your current employer.

Moving into a new career doesn’t automatically require changing employers. In fact, in today’s employment market, companies are more eager than ever to develop the promising employees they already have. Have a conversation with your boss or HR department about how you could change your role within the organization. Volunteer for stretch assignments, inquire about shadowing and cross-training opportunities, and see what benefits your employer offers to offset the cost of education or professional development you might need.

5. Put a staffing recruiter in your corner.

Staffing and employment agencies like PrideStaff specialize in helping talented people like you take the next step in their careers. If you’re considering temporary assignments to explore new career paths, here are a few tips for success:

    • Choose the right type of agency: one that specializes in the type of industries and positions you’re considering.
    • Choose assignments strategically. Tell your staffing recruiter about your career goals and ask for their help in selecting opportunities that will allow you to explore different work environments, build the right skills and evaluate your options. When your recruiter understands where you want to go, they can do a great job presenting assignments that will support your career change.
    • Treat every assignment as a learning and networking opportunity. While you’re on assignment, do more than just what’s required of you. Ask questions. Introduce yourself to coworkers and managers you encounter. Let them know what type of work you’re interested in, and ask them to contact your PrideStaff recruiter if they have a direct job opportunity for you.

Related posts:

Navigating a Career Change During COVID

Ready to explore your career options? 

Start with PrideStaff. Our recruiters can help you:

  • inventory your transferable job skills
  • discuss fields of work that might be a good fit
  • explore new jobs and industries through temporary work
  • provide opportunities to build your skills and experience while earning a steady paycheck

Contact the PrideStaff office in your area to get started.