Recently I met with a young female professional who was seeking career advice. She is a few years out of college and working for a great company in an industry that really excites her. Her #1 goal was to work for this particular company, so she took any job they would offer, which in her case was an entry level role doing the type of work she has no interest in. She wanted to know how she could make the jump from a role in a less than desired career path to a role that aligns closer to where she sees herself.
Before I share the advice I gave her, I want to say a couple of things about her situation. She did the smart thing by targeting a good company vs. looking for any job in her desired career. This young woman did her research and she knew that this would be a good cultural fit. Her values align with that of the organization and she is passionate about what the company does. Ultimately those things will keep her focused and motivated as she navigates internally to pursue her passion.
Now, let me share the advice I offered:
- Demonstrate your commitment to your current role. While your end goal may be a career change, you don’t want to demonstrate a lack of interest. You will turn your manager and others off if you go to work with the sole purpose of searching for a new job.
- Make sure you WOW! them in your current job. This is the job that will lay the groundwork for your personal brand at this company, so hit it out of the park. And in the process, you may WOW! your future boss.
- Build your network. Start networking and making contacts in the area you want to move into. Develop and cultivate those relationships over time and start learning more about your desired career.
- Get yourself noticed. The best way to do this is by raising your hand and taking on additional projects, especially in your desired career. What better way to demonstrate both your interest and capabilities!
- Dress for the job you want. Sometimes young professional don’t know how to dress in the corporate world, which is why I started this blog! You want to demonstrate you are the total package. Not only do you have the skills and ambition but you can also dress the part. Not sure how to dress, follow my blog and take cues from those that already have your desired role.
What other advice would you have given her?