What’s really stopping you from making a career change?

Ange Connor

A New Year brings with it hope and renewed energy for a positive and successful year ahead. We set our goals to keep us on track with what we want to achieve and for many, the work we do and the satisfaction we gain from it features heavily in our goals and new years resolutions. Job satisfaction and engagement can impact significantly on our entire life; affecting our personal life, relationships, quality and freedom of life. Chances are, at some stage over the Christmas holiday period you have reflected on your work life. Are you satisfied? Does your current work and career path motivate and engage you? Can you achieve the career success you want doing what you are doing now for another year?

For some us the answer will be easy. Yep I’m happy and content, there is plenty of opportunity for me to achieve my career goals. For others it will be time to move on and the minute we are back in to the routine of work life we are planning our exit strategy to find career success. And there will be some of us who know deep down that our current career path, job or workplace just isn’t going to do it for us but yet we do nothing.

Why do we do nothing?

No matter how unhappy you are in your career; what is paralysing you from taking action and achieving career success?

You don’t know what you don’t know

Sometimes you just don’t know what you don’t know. I’ve heard people talk about being unhappy or lacking satisfaction in what they currently do but they stick at it year after year because they can’t work out what their real passion is or can’t find the work they’ll love. They don’t know what opportunities exist in the market place, in their region or if that little niggling idea or dream in the back of their mind could really become a reality.

Fear of failure

As creatures of habit, sticking within our comfort zones can be easier than the thought of what if I make a career move and it doesn’t work out. So what if it doesn’t work out? What if the grass is not greener on the other side? What’s the absolute worst thing that could happen? Is that fear realistic or have we blown it out of proportion in our own mind? Maybe we are using it as an excuse not to take action. The first step to overcoming your fear is understanding it and what failure would look like or mean. Sometimes it’s really not as bad as we think.

Lack of self-belief and confidence

Having the belief in ourselves and confidence to take that next step is crucial. Sadly I have seen way too many people in toxic environments who have lost all sense of self confidence and belief. We know we want to change, we know we need to but we have no confidence and in our own mind we tell ourselves we would be of no value or would have nothing to contribute in another workplace. This scenario becomes a vicious circle. To put yourself out there and look for a new career takes self-confidence and you need to be able to articulate what it is you have to offer. If you don’t genuinely believe in yourself it shows through in your application and especially at interview. So when you do finally put yourself out there and your lack of self-belief and confidence shows, you therefore don’t interview well and hence you don’t get the job. Your self-confidence takes another knock and so the vicious circle continues.

If you fall into one or more of these categories and you know in your heart that you need to take the next step in your career; it’s time to get yourself a career coach. A career coach will help you work through the barriers that are preventing you from taking action. They’ll be able to educate and inform you on what you don’t know; giving you insights in to the market about what opportunities really do exist. They’ll help you weigh up and assess what the worst possible case of failure could look like and the odds of failing; they’ll even be able to help you put in place a roadmap for success so you can take baby steps to get where you want to – you don’t necessarily have to take a life changing plunge, it can be a steady transition to career success. A career coach will also help you work through your lack of self-belief and confidence. They’ll guide and educate you on where you might need to invest in developing your skills but they’ll also be able to help you identify the skills that you rock and how to play to those strengths.

If you want to move your career forward this year, make your goal to get yourself a career coach to help keep you on track and achieve your big hairy audacious career goals. Besides, elite sports people have coaches, if you’re serious about your career, getting yourself a career coach makes perfect sense.

About The Author
Ange Connor

Ange is the Founder and Director of Inspire HQ, one of regional Victoria’s leading recruitment, human resource (HR) and careers agencies. Ange is an ‘ideas’ person and a ‘big picture’ thinker. She loves to challenge the status quo – in fact, that’s how Inspire HQ began.

Ange has supported hundreds of businesses across Ballarat and regional Victoria to attract, engage, motivate, develop and retain their greatest assets; their people. Ange’s unyielding passion and invaluable knowledge of the recruitment and HR industry ensures she delivers the best solutions for her clients.

Ange has held various board positions and regularly volunteers her time to share her industry and market knowledge. She was recently a Councillor for the Victoria and Tasmania region of the Recruitment Consulting and Staffing Association (RCSA) of Australia and New Zealand, and she is a current Board Director of the Committee for Ballarat.

For more useful information, follow Ange on LinkedIn.

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