5 STEPS TO TEST­ING THE WATER BE­FORE CHANG­ING JOBS

Ben Pike shows how to make a good tran­si­tion to new work

The Advertiser - Careers - - Training -

GET A HOL­I­DAY JOB If the new in­dus­try lends it­self to sea­sonal, ca­sual or part-time hours for en­try level staff, ap­ply for a po­si­tion that of­fers you a foot in the door. It may not be the de­sired role but can give an in­sight into the in­dus­try cul­ture and skills re­quired for more se­nior jobs. If you don’t like it, you can re­sign with­out hav­ing lost your day job.

VOL­UN­TEER

Sim­i­larly, vol­un­teer­ing can give a glimpse into an in­dus­try cul­ture or work en­vi­ron­ment as well as hav­ing the same easy exit if it’s not for you. This method is also a good way to im­press prospec­tive em­ploy­ers, who are more than will­ing to co-opt free labour – es­pe­cially if you prove use­ful. It also shows that you are will­ing to give up your own time.

AP­TI­TUDE TEST

Un­for­tu­nately not ev­ery­one can be a su­per­model or a rocket sci­en­tist. But for mere mor­tals ap­ti­tude tests are a good way of gaug­ing whether they can re­al­is­ti­cally do the job and how much of an in­ter­est they re­ally have. Skills can be de­vel­oped but in­ter­est is a lit­tle more tricky. There is no point chang­ing to a dif­fer­ent ca­reer if you dis­cover you hate it. There’s any num­ber of these tests on­line. For those who pre­fer more face-to-face con­tact, ca­reers ad­vis­ers may be able to help tease out your mo­ti­va­tions be­hind want­ing to change jobs. A use­ful ad­viser will have a good grasp on who you are as a per­son and a pro­fes­sional.

ASK PEO­PLE IN THE IN­DUS­TRY

If get­ting part-time work is prov­ing dif­fi­cult, there is al­ways the op­tion of just ask­ing. See if there’s a friend or fam­ily mem­ber who you can ask about their day-to-day ex­pe­ri­ences at work. Don’t be afraid to ap­proach peo­ple even if you don’t know them, ei­ther by send­ing them an email or call­ing a work­place. Ask them if they can give you five min­utes of their time to talk about how they broke into the sec­tor, the in­dus­try’s prospects and if the work is what they thought it would be. Most peo­ple love talk­ing about them­selves.

THE WEB

It’s an ob­vi­ous one but for most peo­ple this should be the first port of call. Blogs, web­sites and Youtube videos can give you a strong in­di­ca­tion of what a job is like. Typ­ing ‘‘ a day in the life of a jour­nal­ist’’ into Youtube, for in­stance, brings up 3040 re­sults. A blog is also more likely to be more hon­est in its ap­praisal of a ca­reer than a glossy brochure. In­dus­try web­sites of­fer a good look into the in­dus­try right now.

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