Whether you’re changing industries or branching out into self-employment, the process can feel incredibly isolating. We have the control to change our perspective and we do not have to be unsatisfied in our current professional situation. These tips presented by Originals by Africa’s Best will help you shift:
1. MAKE CONNECTIONS IN YOUR NEW FIELD
Whether you’re changing industries or branching out into self-employment, the process can feel incredibly isolating. Sometimes, it can seem as though you’re taking a few steps back, especially if you’re moving from a senior position into something more junior.
I certainly felt this way when I left the corporate world to start my own business. I knew starting my own business would be challenging, but I was surprised to find that I was my biggest challenge. Starting out, I worried too much about what I didn’t know and my own inexperience.
That’s when I realized the importance of connecting with other women doing the same (or whoever shares your field). They were warm, driven, ambitious, and totally on the same page as me. It’s critical to surround yourself with people who get what you’re about, understand the unique benefits and challenges within your industry, and can connect you with possible clients or other like-minded contacts.
2. LIVE AND BREATHE YOUR INDUSTRY
When I was studying to become my own boss, I read and watched everything I could get my hands on. It’s key to immerse yourself fully in your chosen topic, particularly if you’re new to the field. When you’re changing industries, you have a lot to learn. But don’t allow what you don’t know to eclipse what you do (or what you can pick up).
Notice what people are into or what’s currently trending. Read relevant blogs and study your competition’s websites and social media accounts. I purchased eBooks, joined Facebook groups, anything I could to learn about what others were doing.
Here’s why immersion is important: you’ll find the gaps in the marketplace or your desired industry—and you’ll be able to position yourself to fill them. The way to narrow the gap is to start learning, keep learning, and get a sense of what it’s all about.
3. WRITE DOWN YOUR PLAN OF ACTION
While dreaming about change is fun, to actually move industries you have to act. Change can often feel overwhelming, but studies show that breaking large projects down into small actionable tasks can be a gamechanger.
Sit down at your desk or kitchen table and actually make a list of your goals. Maybe the first involves networking, while the second involves setting up a website. Maybe you need to take a class or two. Writing down the steps you intend to take makes the process real. If possible, assign target dates to complete these tasks. Start small and be consistent. Changing industries is rarely easy, but having a plan will help you when you’re down on yourself or feel you’ll never succeed.
4. VIBRATE HIGH
Surround yourself with positive people, mantras, and energy. This may sound less important than LinkedIn networking or business classes, but taking care of your mental, physical, and spiritual health by exercising regularly, eating well, and making positive lifestyle choices in general gives you the energy to tackle your career shift. By taking care of yourself, you’ll be in the best position possible for when an amazing opportunity strikes—and you’ll seize it.