Switch Industries and Change your Life

by Beata Staszkow December 23, 2015
December 23, 2015
Assess the Industry for Opportunities

Identify Your Transferable Skills

Blog About the Industry You Want to Work in

Industry Transition


Often in our executive careers we feel that we are working in the wrong industry. If the thought of working in a different field excites you more than your current industry, you may well be in this situation.


Additionally, you may feel that opportunities in your current industry are becoming fewer, and it is time to move to a different industry where opportunities are more plentiful.


Regardless, of the reason switching industries at executive level will require some groundwork on your part to make it possible.


Assess the Industry

Before you actually start thinking about an industry transition, do a bit of investigative work. Internet searches, job boards, and LinkedIn groups, will provide you with the information you need to ascertain whether a career in this industry is possible. You do not want to waste your time trying to forge a career in an industry where opportunities are few. You may also discover that the industry looks better from the outside, but the reality is somewhat different.


While you’re about it, work out how the industry works: Who are the customers and where do the revenue streams come from? Who are the big hitters in the industry? This knowledge will help you shape your job search and give you meaningful background knowledge.


Also, determine what qualifications you need to obtain to work in the industry. Be realistic about how long this will take, how you will study, and if the overall effort is worth it.


One of the ways to determine if your skills and experience could be relevant to your target industry is finding people who currently work in it. Having exploratory conversations with people who know it can help you to determine if making the leap is viable. Sometimes you might need to undertake industry-specific qualifications; would you be ready to do that?


If after all this you want to switch industries, perform the following steps.


Identifying Your Transferable Skills

This is an important process when switching careers from one industry to another. In many respects, unless you have to acquire new qualifications to make the switch, these are your passport to your chosen industry. There is a particular technique to identifying and presenting them on your CV and LinkedIn profile. They should appeal to recruiters, headhunters, and hiring managers in that industry, and showcase that you have the skills needed.


Fortunately, you may find that what you do at the moment is very similar to what is required in a different industry. The first step is to identify your transferable skills including soft skills.


Networking

One of the best ways to transition to a new industry is to network with people who work in it. This can be done at events and it can be done online via LinkedIn. Join relevant groups to your new industry, and work out who are the influencers in the groups.


Using LinkedIn’s search tools identify who are the influential people in the industry, and are visible on LinkedIn. Try and expand your search to include headhunters and recruiters who find talent in the industry too.


Start Blogging

Blogging about the industry can improve your visibility help you get ahead from the competition. It gives you an opportunity to showcase your talents and knowledge of the industry, and business gurus like James Caan have cited that they are impressed when candidates blog about an industry.

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