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May 4, 2020

5 Things to Do When You’re Considering a New Career Path

By Megan Pritchett, Career Advisor

If you’re considering a new career path, here are five important things to do along the way.

Do Your Research. The importance of doing your research in a career switch can’t be emphasized enough. Research your new industry extensively, from industry trends to the lingo commonly used to the thought leaders, associations, and conferences for your new field.

Reverse Engineer Job Descriptions. Read as many job descriptions as you can and look at the common themes. You may be surprised! Look for gaps in your own experience or skillset and figure out creative ways to address them.

Tailor Every Application. While it may make sense to you why you’re switching careers (more opportunities, better pay, etc.) it may not always make sense to hiring managers in your target industry. To them, choosing to interview you might be a risky move. Maximize your chances of an interview by tailoring every job application using keywords from the job description. Your career narrative should be presented in a way that makes sense to someone who has never met you before. Quality over quantity!

Make Professional Friends. The only way to get an accurate picture of what a job looks like from the inside is from someone who has been in that specific role. The way to do this is through an informational interview, which is an intentional and professional conversation with someone to learn more about a job, career, or industry.

Be Patient. It often takes time to switch careers, so it’s important to be realistic and patient with yourself in the transition.

Megan Pritchett is a career advisor at the University of Denver through the Career and Professional Development Office. Students can make an appointment to meet one-on-one with Megan by emailing or calling 303-871-2150.

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