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Guide to Career Change

By Susan P. Joyce

How to Smartly Accept Emailed Interview InvitationsThe vast majority of people experience at least 3 career changes during their working lives.

With the growing imact of technology, the pace may be picking up in the 21st century.

Some career changes are voluntary, when you feel that another career would be more satisfying or rewarding.

Some career changes are involuntary when something changes in your life (like becoming a parent) or when something changes in your profession or industry, like a growing use of technology.

Both voluntaryy and involuntary career change will work for you, if you take the right approach and have the right mind set.

Career vs. Job

So, if you haven't already been through a career change yet, you probably will be in the future. The most successful career changes are usually the result of a thoughtful, methodical process, and we'll help you step through that process here.

A "career" is your profession, and it hopefully has a "career path" of jobs with increasing levels of responsibility and reward.

A career change is typically more significant than a job change. Hopefully, a career change leads to more meaningful and personally rewarding work for you.  Although it may not always bring a greater salary, at least initially, it should bring greater satisfaction - so that Monday when you head back to work isn't the worst day of the week as it is for so many (the day that people in the USA typically have a heart attack, too).

A "job" is what you do every day.

For many of us, a job is not a "career" - it is "just a job."  It pays the bills but it doesn't do much more for us.

For those of us who are incredibly lucky or who have paid attention to our own priorities and interests, a job is part of a career.  Typically, we don't think of it as a job, when it is something we love to do.  It is "my work" or "what I do."

Career Change vs. Job Change

Hopefully, whether we make a voluntary or involuntary job change, we take the time to make sure the new job fits into our career path. If we don't, chances are good that we'll be in another job search sooner than we need to be because the job isn't a good fit. Which means we won't enjoy doing it, won't do it as well as we could, and may not be good enough at it to keep it for very long.

The best solution is to take the time to think about what you "really want to do when you grow up."  If not now, when?

This section of Job-Hunt will hopefully help you with that transition from job to career, or from one career to another one, as times (and people) change.


About the author...

Online job search expert Susan P. Joyce has been observing the online job search world and teaching online job search skills since 1995. A veteran of the United States Marine Corps and a recent Visiting Scholar at the MIT Sloan School of Management, Susan is a two-time layoff “graduate” who has worked in human resources at Harvard University and in a compensation consulting firm. Since 1998, Susan has been editor and publisher of Follow Susan on Twitter at @jobhuntorg and on Facebook, LinkedIn, and Google+.

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