Stepping out of our comfort zone mid-career can be daunting. However, it is a new way to discover new purpose as you move on to new ventures. It could also enhance your skillsets and set you on the path to more exciting career opportunities. Before deciding on making that switch, there are many things to consider. Here are a few useful tips that can help you with making a successful career transition.
Evaluate Your Areas for Growth
A good thing about making a mid-career switch is that it gives you a good opportunity to re-evaluate your strengths and weaknesses. Through your previous job experiences, you may have a better inkling of the areas that you are naturally good at and where is it that you struggle. Having a clear understanding of your professional traits will be helpful in selecting the kind of industry and role that you move into next.
Of course, it also doesn’t mean that you should only do things that you are already good at. Do also note down your areas of weakness and take concrete steps to improve upon them. At this point, you may even want to consider seeking out a life coach to get an unbiased evaluation on how you can further improve yourself.
Formulate a Plan
The next step is to come up with a concrete plan for making the switch. In addition to checking that your dream job lines up with your skillsets, it will also be wise to do some research to ensure that the industry that you are considering is one that is growing, and in need of workers. Do also think about how your current experiences and skillsets can help to bring new perspectives and inject new life into the industry that you are planning to enter.
You should also compare your current CV against what an ideal CV for the job that you are applying for looks like. The gap between the two are the skills and attributes that you will have to work on acquiring.
Support Schemes and Programmes
Part of your career switching plan should also include financial planning. As you go through a period of training and reskilling, it is important to look out for subsidies and schemes that will aid you as you go through a period of training and reskilling.
One such resource is the SGUnited Skills programme, which is part of the Singapore government’s response to help job seekers impacted by COVID-19 acquire industry-relevant skills. It is a full-time training programme that consist of courses ranging from six to 12 months.
A key feature of this programme is its modular format, which makes it easy for you to transit to employment should an opportunity come along mid-way. Many of the higher learning institutions that offer courses under the SGUnited Skills programme, help to link you up with companies for industrial attachments, as well as provide career coaching and job placement services. At SIM, a six-month train-and place programme is offered in the Advanced Manufacturing Sector. Job placements will be facilitated by SIM’s industry partners such as Autodesk, Chemistry, DataVLT, FireEye, Hewlett Packard and Yellow Pages.
Finally, in terms of affordability, you will be pleased to know that the fees for courses under the SGUnited Skills programme are heavily subsidised and can be offset with SkillsFuture credits. What’s more, you will also receive up to $1,200 a month to help you with your daily expenses.
Even as you go through the practicalities that come with making a mid-career switch, it is important to stay positive. Keep your focus on the end-goal, and think of any challenges as part of the journey towards something new and exciting. Remember that staying stagnant can be dangerous, and that embracing change is the best way to build up your resilience and prepare you for today’s VUCAH economy.