How to Start a New Career?
This article will help you to start a new career, which is currently a hot topic. According to Statistics Netherlands (CBS) report 937 000 people made a career jump in 2017. That’s almost a million people who took a new course in their professional lives!
Majority of the people starting a brand new career were under 25 years old. This is of course understandable because many young people give up their part-time jobs after graduation and move on to the field that they studied.
The report shows that highly educated people above 25 years old were keen to start a new career. Individuals with mid-level education were not that much behind their peers with a higher education. Only people with lower education were less keen to make a career change.
A whopping two-thirds of the above 25 years old career changers looked for new opportunities outside their previous industry. These people were typically from service industries, such as banks or insurance companies. The last one-third changed careers by climbing up to the next level within their industry. Typically this would involve studying for a degree or getting certified.
The circumstances that lead to change varied greatly. There were industries that were disappearing due to automatization, whole new industries to explore, personal circumstances such as illnesses or injuries that prevented people to work in their old industries, relocations, reorganizations, bankruptcies and finally personal aspirations.
The Impact of your image
But what other aspects, than image and personal brand, you should consider when starting a new career? I had the pleasure to interview Dorota Klop-Sowinska of DoSo! Coaching. She is just about to publish her new book about this timely topic. Read further to learn all about it!
How to Start a New Career?
– Interview with Dorota Klop-Sowinska
Company name: DoSo! Coaching
Expertise: Coaching, counseling
Background: I studied Finance and Banking at the Warsaw School of Economics. My first serious job was as an Office Manager. I then moved on quickly to the Finance Department and, eventually, to the Netherlands and got a job as Internal Auditor. When I decided to start a new career, I needed to study again as my past education had little to do with coaching and counseling. I did the studies in the Netherlands at the Dutch Academy for Psychotherapy.
Passionate about career coaching because: I believe that there are so many good things to be done in this world and that we need talented and passionate people who are ready to step up the game, claim their gifts and do the job they love! Sounds maybe very cliché but I just want to make this world a better place and I have figured out that for me career coaching is the spot where I can have the impact I desire, and I can create the ripple effect!
Least favorite career advice: Listen to your family and friends. Despite the good intentions our family members and friends have, we must realize that they are not always on the same page as we are. We need to be aware that their advice will always be biased by their own reality, fears and limiting beliefs.
Q&A on How to Start a New Career?
Question 1: My readers are passionate about the image they are projecting to the outer world. What aspects of your personal image one should pay attention to when planning a career change?
I think projecting a desired image during a career change, is crucial to the successful transition and just in general to your professional path. It all starts with knowing in which direction you are heading, and/or which change you want to make.
In my previous job as an auditor I needed to be very professional in my communication and to the certain point also distant. I was wearing a lot of grey uniforms. When I started a new career as a coach, I needed to seriously adapt many aspects of my image including my appearance. That meant no more grey suits.
Regarding my communication and behavior I adapted a much warmer and empathic presence. It took me some time before I fully transitioned my image, although my old life sometimes still shines through.
First decide who you want to become and how does it relate to who you are as a person. Find out what are your values, strengths and personal characteristic, how do you want to be perceived as a person and what do you want to project. And only then based on that adjust your external look and communication style.
Question 2: There is a sea of personal branding tools available for all budgets, some are even free. What are in your opinion the best personal branding tools that every aspiring career switcher needs to have?
I think LinkedIn, Facebook and Instagram are all amazing tools to create and cultivate your brand. You need to discover where your tribe resides. I use myself the mix of all three, but if I am building my expert status or getting business, it is LinkedIn. You definitely need to invest some time, energy, and maybe even money, in your LinkedIn presence.
I would definitely invest in a professional photo shoot for your profile picture. Nowadays you can find a great photographer for every budget.
If your aim is to show yourself as an expert you need to start acting like one. You need to start by sharing other people’s content in the topics that are available for your followers. Eventually you need to start creating your own content – articles, videos, podcast etc.
Always give value! It helps you to position yourself as an expert in your field.
Question 3: Making such a huge switch is a daunting experience. I am a big advocate for asking for help. What type of support there is available for aspiring career jumpers?
I have recently published my first book on career change called Career Jump! How to Successfully Change Your Professional Path. I have included in the book stories of my 10 clients who made their own career jumps. One of the questions I have asked them was “What is the advice you would like to give to the people who are standing now in the place you stood before your change?”. They all answered: “Ask a professional for help.”
My client Marieke says in the book “People who know you put you in a certain box and direct you towards the kinds of opportunities fitting that box. If you want to move out of the box, they will never really be able to help you. Instead, you need somebody who will ask you neutral questions that will help your thinking process, and give you a kick in the butt every once in a while. An objective person will help keep you motivated towards that desired change, keep your eye on the light at the end of the tunnel, and help you take the appropriate steps. A coach fulfills this role.”
There are many coaches out there. Choose the one you trust and the one with whom you have the best connection. I use help of others coaches and trainers all the time. When I need to prepare for a big speech, when I wanted to give my business a boost – I asked for help. This is the way to grow. Find a coach who can help you to challenge yourself and help you to look beyond your current mindset.
My second tip is creating a “cheerleader club”. It’s a group of people who believe in you and who will support you. I am also starting my own online community of people who already career jumped, people who are in the process of jumping and those who are in the starting blocks. This way we can all help each other succeed. You can also start your own group! The most important is that you have the right support.
Question 4: Having the time to make things happen is a challenge for many, including myself. Are there any online career development resources that you can recommend?
As a working mother of two girls with a husband who travels constantly, it was extremely difficult to focus on writing my book. I noticed that at I started to blame everyone and everything for not having enough time to finalize the book. What really helped me was realizing that a lot my time was spent procrastinating. For example, I still somehow managed to watch Netflix.
If you really want something, you need to ask yourself: “How badly do I want it? And what am I prepared to do to achieve it?”. In my book I spend a lot of time on talking about this.
What really helped me to manage my procrastination was Steven Pressfield’s book“The War of Art”. It talks about how we sabotage ourselves by coming up with all sorts of excuses. Just to realize, that we all do that and also to get advice on what to do about it, was mind-blowing.
Utilize these FREE resources on DoSo! Coaching website:
- Discover your values with “List of core value exercises”
- E-book “5 Steps To Your Talent Based Career”
Question 5: What was the best advice you got when you were making your own career jump?
Just start somewhere and share your thoughts with people who are positive and supportive. This was the advice I got from someone who was already busy with his coaching certification. Unfortunately, I did not listen to the second part of the advice, so I shared my new idea with everyone. I then found out that some people who I thought were friends, turned negative and unsupportive. It made me question my decision but luckily I did not give up on my vision.
If your idea of career jumping is still very fresh and you are not so confident yourself, do not share it with everyone but only with the ones who you know you can rely on. Otherwise you risk that the idea will die a silent death.
In my coaching, articles and in the book Career Jump! I hammer always on the idea that you need to build your support group when you jump, you need a safety net that will be there to catch you but also to just give you confidence to make that change.
Question 6: Tell us your favorite career swap success story?
All stories of my clients are my favorites, however small or big the career jumps were. I know how much work, energy, planning and determination goes in to any change. They are all personal victories of my clients.
If I was to quote the most spectacular one it would be the one of my female clients, Vera, who quit her corporate career in Belgium and moved to Egypt to run a hotel over there for divers and kite surfers. She did that because she wanted to dive every day, swim with her beloved sharks and talk about importance of saving aquatic life.
You can read this story, along 9 others inspiring ones, in my book!
Thank you very much for the great career jump advice Dorota!
Your image consultant with an eye for detail
MORE ABOUT CAREER JUMP!
In 2007, after the near-death delivery of her first child, Dorota completely changed her career from one in the corporate world to coaching and counseling. The main focus of Dorota’s work is to help women across the globe to find their meaningful career path and transition to it.
For every book sold, one Janma Clean Birth Kit will be purchased. Janma kits provide the sanitary tools and instructions to help women in resource poor areas survive their deliveries without infection. The kits are produced by the globally renowned company Ayzh.
Career Jump! How to Successfully Change Your Professional Path is ready for pre-orders on www.careerjump.nl and will appear also on September 12th on Amazon.