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Changing Career Direction?

Changing career paths can be a daunting change and sometimes it is not by choice that this is now happening. When someone has been in the same line of work for their entire working life, it can seem almost impossible to envisage doing something different.

Hopefully this will help to get you thinking outside the box…

1. Transferable Qualities:

Rather than thinking about the job title or industry that you have worked in, think about the qualities required for, and skills gained from your career. Take Nursing for instance… Nurses generally:

· keep calm under pressure

· Strong observation skills

· manage multiple responsibilities simultaneously

· have outstanding organisational skills

· have exceptional relationship building skills

· are articulate communicators

· are considerate and empathetic

· take on responsibility with confidence

· are decisive and strong on self-management

· are thorough and accurate in fulfilling responsibilities

· have critical thinking skills

· tend to be high energy, efficient workers

These qualities transition into many different roles and career paths i.e. social services, account management, sales, customer service, office support / reception, stakeholder management, marketing support (if have a creative flair in their skillset), etc.

From personal experience having started my career as a nurse, I was looked favourably on to move into youth services, staff management, sales roles, recruitment / employment consulting, and even training facilitator. The common factor in all the jobs being ‘people’, and nursing certainly lines you up well for the skills required to be in people centric roles such as these.

2. Transferable Skills

Every job has transferable skills. Sometimes you just need to take a step back and look at what you did on a daily basis, make a list and then broaden the statement.

Following the same theme for nurses, the following could be said for transferable skills:

· Physically capable

· Report writing skills

· Quality control

· Mathematically capable

· Coordinating workloads

· Problem solving

· Networking

· Research

We don’t always enjoy every aspect of our jobs but by making a list we can then highlight the areas that particularly appealed to you. This gives you a focus when looking at other jobs. Don’t get caught up by the job titles but dig a little deeper to see what skills are required. If the vacancy fits your transferable skills (and qualities) then you have relevant experience even if the job title was different.

So rather than looking at job titles or associated industries, look at the qualities and skills required to perform a role and go from there. This will open up so many other options that you may not have already considered. Start with what you have… not what you don’t. You might just be pleasantly surprised at how employable you are in many industries and career paths.

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