Picture Yourself Making the Move to a New Career in a Growth Industry
Success is where preparation and opportunity meet. – Bobby Unser
You know you’re ready for a career change – but what career? How do you choose? Where do you start? Obviously, you want to be successful at whatever choice you make. You want a career that has growth potential. You want a career that suits your interests and style. With that in mind, you need a strategy – one that includes research on growth industries; the skills needed to be successful; the education you should consider; and finally, what the next step might be. The following will help you narrow down your interests and develop a plan:
Careers in Growth Industries
What are some of the fields that have the best potential for future growth? Writing for salary.com, Dawn Dugan outlines career fields with job growth potential in the years to come. They are:
- Information Technology.
- Alternative Energy.
- International Law.
- Content Creation.
- Financial Analyst.
Writing for monster.com, Sally Buffalo identifies 10 fast-growing industries:
- Professional Services.
- Waste Management.
- Financial Investments.
- Travel, Hospitality, and Leisure.
- Private Education.
Not only are these areas growth industries, but more specifically, they are all centered around persistent human needs that do not become obsolete over time. This translates to job security well into the future.
In addition, another industry not mentioned here, but one which will always be crucially important to societal order and well-being is the law enforcement industry. This includes, but is not limited to: police, probation, corrections, crime scene investigation, security services, and Homeland security. As Mary Ellen Slayter writing for monster.com writes, “Jobs in criminal justice are demanding, but the rewards of serving your fellow citizens are unparalleled.”
Is a Career Change in Your Future?
With some of these growth industries in mind, do you see yourself making a career change in your future? If so, what do you need to make a change? If you analyze it, you probably already have some of the skills to build upon in some of these areas. Looking at both lists it’s obvious that these industries all require a knowledge base that includes:
- Communication skills.
- People skills.
- Technical skills (especially a willingness to learn and use databases and specialized industry software).
- Problem-solving skills.
- Project management skills.
- Marketing skills.
- Learning skills required for ongoing professional education and training.
The Right Moves Begin with the Right Questions
To take it from an idea to a reality, you need a plan. To do that, you will need to figure out what new career direction you want to take. As there are more choices than ever before, you might begin by asking yourself these questions:
- What gets me up in the morning?
- What inspires me?
- What do I find worthwhile?
- What are my values?
- Do I prefer to be a part of a support team or be a leader?
- What types of activities can I see myself doing for years to come?
Setting aside tangible rewards, such as an increase in pay, these questions are geared toward understanding what truly motivates you. You need to discover what gives you a sense of purpose, direction, commitment, and accomplishment. The answers to these questions will help you hone in on the field you’re interested in pursuing.
Once you have an idea of the field, exploring different career options has never been easier thanks to the Internet. You can first research your interests, and then seek out the people already working and writing about the field – and asking them questions about their jobs and the field you’re considering. You might explore blogs written by professionals in the field. You may even find that they’ve answered many of your questions. Remember, most people sharing information online really enjoy being helpful.
After some exploration, what do you think?
- How do you view the different job markets?
- What essential skills do you feel people across different job sectors must have?
- How do you react to the thought of changing careers?
- How do you get started?
Once you have an idea about a field you would like to pursue, and are more informed about your chosen field, you need a strategy to move your goal forward. Writing for themuse.com, Jenny Foss discusses 8 steps to a successful career change:
- Start with the Why.
- Get Clear on the What.
- Figure Out the What’s it Gonna Take.
- Make an Action Plan.
- Track the Effort.
- Shift Your Brand.
- Mobilize Your Posse.
- Get in Cahoots with the Right People.
Choosing the Right Education to Further Your Career Goals
Ms. Foss’s step 3 is a crucial step. You can and should utilize your existing expertise as a springboard to a new career. But, you also need to find out what additional training, and/or education you may need for your new career path. Here are some degree areas that provide a broad range of subject areas pertinent to some of the career fields noted above:
- Business Administration or Management (can lead to positions in many different sectors, including, education, government, private business, and retail).
- Healthcare Administration (can lead to jobs within a hospital or clinical setting, as a nursing home administration, or in an outside setting in social and community services).
- Psychology (can lead to positions in a clinical setting but can also lead to jobs in an educational, or organizational setting as well as business, including human resources).
- Education (can lead to a variety of jobs beyond an educational setting such as, corporate trainer, or educational specialist for museums and community parks).
- Marketing (can lead to jobs such as, consulting, social media, advertising, communications, and market research).
- Criminal Justice (can lead to positions in corrections, law enforcement/police, forensic crime scene investigation, Homeland security, and security services).
An Online Educational Program is an Optimal Learning Strategy
When you’ve settled on an area of study, and identified additional training you want to pursue, you will need to find an educational program that will help you get from here to there. That said, the average person changing careers is balancing work, family, financial and time commitments. How do you go back to school and keep everything else going? One of the best educational strategies can be to earn your certificate or degree online. Here are just a few of the benefits:
- Time-saving (courses are ready when you are 24/7).
- Cost-effective (tuition is generally lower than brick and mortar schools).
- Convenient (self-paced instruction is literally at your fingertips).
It’s Your Move!
Once you have an idea in mind of where you want to be and how you intend to get there, a world of varied opportunities awaits you! You are ready to position yourself to take advantage of career opportunities in growth industries just waiting for your contributions. Work on a strategy to insure you have the greatest chance for success and then make your move!