“If you can't fly then run, if you can't run then walk, if you can't walk then crawl, but whatever you do you have to keep moving forward.”
― Martin Luther King Jr. (Martin Luther King Day is January 21st)
How are you moving forward in 2013? The beginning of a new year tends to be a busy time for those of us who assist with career transitions. Just like those who join the gym on January 2nd with a “gung ho” attitude, many individuals get an adrenaline rush and a “need” to make a career change. And so, I ask a few important questions for you to consider BEFORE you start to throw your résumé out into the wind.
1. WHY do you want to make a change? Is it your career path or your actual job? Is it your job or your employer? Know for sure before you put yourself out there.
2. In an ideal world, WHAT would improve your situation? Less hours, more hours, a different boss, more training, flexible work hours, different commute, a promotion, more money, alternate work space, a change in co-workers, different scope of responsibilities? WHAT are your core work values? (An important question that I ask my résumé and coaching clients during their intake session)
3. Do you have the needed TOOLS (and know where to get them)? We may know we want to make a change, but do we have what we need? Making a change may often mean hiring a coach or a mentor, taking a class, getting additional training? If you have your sights set on something new, make sure that you find out what is needed to be successful and if you are missing some important tools, decide if you’d like to make the investment to fill in your tool box.
4. Are you ready to MARKET yourself? Yes, making a change requires marketing yourself and networking effectively. Are your materials in order? You will need (at minimum) a compelling and strategically designed résumé that catches a potential employer’s attention and showcases the unique value that you have to offer; and a strong LinkedIn profile. (Visit our website to learn more.)
At the end of the day, preparing for a career transition, new job, or return–to– work requires careful planning. So before you get on the 2013 career change treadmill, do your homework, and solicit the professional assistance you may need to help you stay the course.
Michelle A. Riklan, ACRW, CPRW, CEIC
Résumés that land on the top of the pile!
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Local resident Michelle A. Riklan is a certified professional résumé writer, career coach, speaker, author, and employment interview consultant.