Coaching for Career Transition: 10 Steps to Change Your Career

What is a career transition coach?

A career transition coach works with you to assist you anytime you're facing a big career shift: moving from one industry to another, moving cities or countries, or getting out of long-term unemployment.

The coach will assess your strengths and weaknesses, your current situation, and come up with a plan to get you where you want to be.

How much does it cost to hire a career transition coach?

The average coach will charge somewhere between $100 and $200 depending on his experience.

If you've been laid off, you might be offered career transitioning services through an outplacement agency. The goal is to help you get another job as soon as possible.

10 Steps to Change Your Career (with the help of a coach)

  1. Assess your strengths and weaknesses
  2. Figure out what career you want
  3. Create a career plan
  4. Revamp your resume and LinkedIn profile
  5. Find jobs in the right place
  6. Start networking
  7. Work on your interviewing skills
  8. Negotiate salary and benefits
  9. Accountability: never give up!
  10. New job onboarding

1 - Assess your strengths and weaknesses

The coach will use psychometric tests to assess your personality type, skills, abilities, and knowledge.

Once you know what your strengths and weaknesses are, it will become easier to find a career you can excel at, rather than a job you struggle with or hate.

2 - Figure out what career you want

Knowing your strengths and weaknesses is the first step. But you also want to look at your passions. What is your dream career? What job would you take even if you were not paid?

Your previous job experience is also important in defining the next step in your career. The intersection between your passion, experience, and skills is your next ideal career.

Be realistic about your choice, but never stop dreaming. You need to find the sweet spot between humbleness and ambition. The career coach can help you with that.

3 - Create a career plan

Ok, you have decided on a career. A coach can help you lay out your new career plan:

  • Skills: is there anything new you have to learn to change your career?
  • Education: do you need to get a license or a college degree?
  • Networking: what people can help you get the job you want?
  • Companies: what is the ideal company you'd like to work at?
  • Salary: how much compensation would make you happy?
  • Deadline: By when do you want to get settled in your new career?

Be very specific about what a successful career transition would be. Establish smart goals: specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-based.

4 - Revamp your resume and LinkedIn profile

Don't start sending your old resume yet. You need to tailor it to your desired career. For instance, if your new career requires customer service skills, emphasize previous job experiences that required customer interaction.

Don't forget your social network profiles. Make sure you clean up anything that makes you look bad. The most important one is your LinkedIn profile. This is where employers and recruiters will look first.

Career transition coaches have a lot of experience helping people write their resumes. They have seen everything and have worked with many professionals.

5 - Find jobs in the right place

Where do you find a job? Knowing where to look is as important as knowing what companies to apply for. Compile a list of your dream job companies and look on their websites.

You can even call and ask them directly if they are hiring. If it's a smaller company, you can show up with your resume in hand and talk with the business owner.

Look in industry-specific job directories. Your last option should be generic job boards like Indeed, Monster, Career Builder, or Glassdoor.

6 - Start networking

Ever heard "Your net worth is your network"? Who you know can make the difference between living the life of your dreams or having to settle for a lackluster career.

A career coach can assist you with networking. He can help identify people you should connect with, how to develop professional relationships and how to leverage those relationships for success.

7 - Work on your interviewing skills

Getting a call for an interview is no guarantee you will actually get the job. A career coach will teach you how to answer common interview questions, and how to impress the hiring manager.

8 - Negotiate salary and benefits

Once you get offered a job, you will have to negotiate compensation and benefits. If you lack experience in your new career, how can you convince the hiring manager not to pay you a junior-level salary?

Negotiation is both an art and a skill. You need to be assertive and learn how to stand up for yourself. However, you won't get hired if you're too arrogant. Be realistic about salary negotiation.

9 - Accountability: never give up!

One thing a career transition coach can provide for you is accountability. When you face a tough project, it's easy to give up.

A career coach can make sure you're staying on track and putting in the hard work. He will provide the inspiration and guidance you need to achieve success.

10 - New job onboarding

Once you get offered a job, how do you make sure you will succeed?

You need to learn how to navigate office politics in your new career. All industries are different. Who are your allies? What are the threats?

How do you impress your new boss? How do you get promoted? Once again, a career transition coach can help you with that.

When to hire a career transition coach?

If you've been laid off, you might get coaching from an outplacement services company.

However, there are good reasons to hire a coach by yourself. If you're tired of your career, feel you've hit a ceiling, or simply never liked your industry, a coach can help you get unstuck.

You can also hire a transition coach if you're moving to a new city or country where work culture is completely different.

Benefits of Career Transition Coaching

  • Find the next job faster.
  • Get tips from an experienced professional who has been in business for many years.
  • Helps you figure out what you want for your life.
  • Helps you figure out the next career path.
  • Helps you explain employment gaps.
  • Helps you figure out your strengths.
  • Access to jobs you might not even think about.
  • Networking opportunities, the coach might know people in the right positions.
  • Create a better resume that gets you interviews.
  • Develop networking skills.
  • Prepare for the interview.
  • Holds you accountable.
  • Helps you onboard into your new job position.

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