When is Making a Career Change the Right Decision?


career changeAnyone who has ever changed careers knows what a daunting task it can be. Working in one field and then deciding to jump into another line of work can require further education, training and experience, not to mention an understanding of what your new career will involve and how to break into the industry.

However, if after considering all this you still want to change careers, be sure that the career change you plan to make is the right decision for you.

Wrong Reasons for Making a Career Change

First, let’s begin by defining the difference between a job change and a career change. Changing jobs means you merely move from one employer to another, but you do the same thing. So if you are a janitor at one, you will be a janitor at the other.

A career change, on the other hand, means you are completely changing the work you do. In some instances you don’t even have to change employers, if there is an appropriate job opening and training program available. Changing careers means you change your line of work. So if you are a janitor now, maybe you decide to become a graphic artist.

While everyone has their reason(s) for wanting to change careers, there are generally some that are better than others. First, let’s talk about the wrong reasons for making a career change.

Don’t change careers to run away from a bad situation at work. If your boss is unbearable, the hours stink and the pay is subpar, you may decide to find a new job. However, that is not the right motivation for making a major life change like starting a whole new career.

In addition, changing careers because you don’t know what else to do or you are desperate is also a wrong move. Too many people who are in this type of situation will make the wrong career choice and wind up hating their decision.

Finally, don’t change careers based on someone else’s wants or needs. A career change needs to be your decision. Consider all the struggling actors whose parents pushed them into “real” careers.

Right Reasons for Making a Career Change

Changing careers can be overwhelming; therefore, it’s important not to make any snap decisions. Obviously the sooner you start, the sooner you will finish. However, be sure to consider carefully all your options before settling on a course of action.

The best reason for making a career change is because it is something you’ve always wanted to do. If you have a passion that cannot be denied then maybe it’s time to change careers. Change careers when another line of work is the only thing you can see yourself doing.

Now some people may want to change careers because they are in a job that they didn’t chose. Perhaps when they obtained their first job, they took what was available and while it has turned into a great career, it was never really something that interested them. Change careers because you have outgrown what you are doing.

Finally, you should consider a career change because you recently lost your job and you can’t find a new one in the field in which you were trained. As technological changes take over the workplace and jobs that once were no longer exist, changing careers may be your only option.

Whatever you ultimately decide about making a career change, it is important to consider all your options. Then you can decide if you are making the right decision to change careers.