Changing Your Profession? How to Move Forward and Jump Start Your Career

Many people spend years on the same career path, only to discover that they’ve outgrown their job or industry. Maybe their interests have changed, or perhaps they have discovered work that they feel will be more fulfilling or meaningful.

Why Do You Want to Start a New Career?

If you’ve decided that you would like to begin a new career, you’ll first have to determine what has led you to this point. There’s usually at least one main factor that is motivating this kind of change, plus a few other incentives. These are the most common reasons that people have identified when changing careers:

  • They would welcome a more flexible schedule. Many parents would like the opportunity to travel less for work, or to work a job that allows them to put their child on the school bus in the morning. Children aren’t the only reason though — some people like to volunteer in their free time and are looking for a schedule that will allow them to enjoy outside interests.
  • They are searching for a “recession-proof” job. Since 2008, the U.S. economy has been on shaky footing, and although it’s improved, it has prompted tens of thousands to look for work in education, technology, law enforcement, and specialized business.
  • They didn’t feel comfortable in their previous career. Some career changers completed a college degree years ago while being unsure if it was the right path for them. Now, they would like to start working in an area that truly interests them.
  • They want their job to be more meaningful. After a decade or two of work, it’s not unusual for employees to take stock of their work history and then decide that they want to do something that is more in line with their personal goals.
  • They’d like to earn more money. Of course, this is an important factor, but it’s usually an ancillary reason and not the main motivation.

Form a Career Plan

A new career is a momentous choice that can affect your family, lifestyle, and finances. You should make a plan to start learning more about a different profession.

  • Talk it out. Begin networking with others who have the career that you are working toward.
  • Let your boss know. If you work for a large company, tell your boss what your plans are. There may be room for advancement in other departments that more closely align to your work goals. Also check your company’s benefits to see if they provide some form of tuition reimbursement.
  • Research graduate schools. A career change may require that you earn a graduate degree. With online options so prevalent, how do you choose a program? U.S. News and World Report is an excellent resource that ranks many different programs — both online and on campus — into distinct groups (such as best online graduate degrees and best online education degrees) to help you sort out offerings.

If you’re looking to earn a graduate degree while you continue to work a full-time or part-time job, contact Lindenwood University Online. Our online master’s degree programs in business, education, administration and leadership are ranked by U.S. News and World Report and are accredited by The Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools. Our admissions counselors can help guide you as you start taking steps toward a new, fulfilling career.