Is It Time For a Career Change?

Changing careers is more common than you may think. Experts say people change careers an average of three or more times during their lifetimes. Often, people spend years in a specific industry before they realize that it isn’t a good fit or dare to take on a new challenge. Identifying why it isn’t a good fit is the key to getting your career back on the right track. That information can help you decide if the next step should be a change in industry, function, or both. An MBA can provide the business knowledge and broader network needed to achieve your career goals.

How To Know When To Change Careers

There are some common signs that indicate it’s time to consider a career change. For example, you may feel burned out or bored. You may feel a lack of motivation and creativity. If you’ve been in the same job for many years, you may want new and bigger challenges. The following checklist can be used to determine if it’s time for a new career. Change is possible, but the first step is recognizing that it’s time to take action.

You Constantly Feel Like You’re Burning Out

People in the wrong career commonly experience burn out. They feel drained of energy like they have no more gas in the tank. Physical symptoms include fatigue, insomnia, and forgetfulness. They also tend to get sick more often.

You Feel Bored or Apathetic at Work

They also feel bored and apathetic toward work. They can do more, but not in this job. If this sounds like you, then it’s time to find a new path where you will feel challenged and be able to realize your potential.

You’re Jealous of Others’ Jobs

People in the wrong job are often jealous of their friends’ and family members’ jobs. Don’t dismiss these feelings. Rather, use them as a way to begin thinking about what careers may be right for you.

You Have No Room To Grow

Another telltale sign that a job isn’t a good fit is lack of opportunity for growth. If you feel stuck in your current career, a change could help you find a new path where you can go farther and make a bigger impact.

Five Tips for Making a Career Change

How to Use Wharton EMBA Career Coaching

Where To Start With Your Career Change

Once you decide that it’s time to make a change, it can feel overwhelming. How do you begin to make that happen? The first step involves self-reflection. Consider things like:

  • What are you passionate about?
  • What would make you excited to get up in the morning?
  • Do you know anyone with any interesting job that you want to learn more about?
  • Is there a way to leverage your past experiences with other interests?
  • What strengths do you have and what knowledge gaps do you need to fill?
  • Can you make a change within your current organization?

This type of self reflection will help you to identify careers that may be a better fit.

The next step is to create an action plan. Who will you talk to for job information? How will you identify opportunities? How will you fill any knowledge gaps? Do you need to go back to school to fill those gaps? 

How To Change Careers With An EMBA

See how these EMBA students and alumni leveraged Wharton to make a change in their careers:

Edgardo Jimenez, WG’20

Heavy Industry to Technology

Raj Ratnakar, WG’05

Software Entrepreneur to Chief Strategy Officer

Preeti Rathi, WG’14

Technology to VC

Shivaraman (Shiva) Ramachandran, WG’18,

Technologist to Business Operations