Quiz – Time for a Career Change?

career ladderToday’s working professionals change jobs, on average, 11 times throughout their careers.  This is amazing considering just a few short decades ago, many employees retired from a company with 30 years (or more) of service.

At the same time, globalization, technology advances, and changing legislation are creating a continuous string of new professions.  Five years ago, few had heard of fields like SEO or Digital Analytics.  In fact, many new graduates will retire from jobs that don’t even exist today.

Considering the “new normal”, the field of career coaching has become even more critical in recent years.  Professionals no longer need to “settle” for jobs that are unsatisfying.  What once was a decision based on geography, family, or happenstance, is now a conscious choice based on values, interests, and passions. 

The opportunities that exist can be overwhelming, but also exciting.  And in many cases, changing careers no longer means starting from scratch.  Transferable skills allow many professionals to switch roles without losing too much traction on compensation or level, which had previously been a major deterrent to pursuing a transition.

So, is 2014 the time to explore a new career?  Ask yourself the following to find out:

1)      Think about how you originally got into your current profession.  Was it:

a.       a conscious decision?

b.      a series of random choices that led to where you are today?

c.       a combination of both a and b?

2)      How descriptive are these statements of your current feelings toward your job:

          On Sunday nights, I feel stressed or a sense of dread.

          Many people at work frustrate me. 

          I’m traveling when I’d rather be home.

          Work just “is what it is”. I’m lucky to have a job.

          I’m stuck in this job. I don’t know what else I’d do.

a.       Not descriptive at all

b.      More descriptive than it used to be

c.       Pretty descriptive most of the time

3)      How descriptive are these of your current attitudes toward your work?

          I find myself making more mistakes at work, forgetting things, or taking more time off.

          I’m less proactive about volunteering for projects and actively participating in meetings.

          I’ve stopped making efforts to mentor/develop more junior colleagues.

          I tend to just go through the motions most days.

a.       Not descriptive at all

b.      More descriptive than it used to be

c.       Pretty descriptive most of the time

4)      How descriptive are these of your current activity level in your field outside of what is required?

          I’m continuing to actively sharpen my skills and learn new ones to remain marketable.  

          I regularly participate in activities outside of work (e.g., professional associations, networking events, etc.) and/or read industry journals to stay current. 

a.       Pretty descriptive most of the time

b.      Not as descriptive as it used to be

c.       Not at all descriptive

5)      I believe that a layoff could impact me in this job:

a.       My job is as safe as a kitten

b.      It’s always possible that I could be impacted

c.       I regularly worry about a possible layoff

If the majority of your responses were a combination of “b” or “c”, it might be time to consider new career options.  If you haven’t explored opportunities in a while, you may be surprised by what you find.

Happy hunting!

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