How Do I Change Industries?

Don’t you just hate it when you find an article of clothing that you love, but it doesn’t quite fit? It almost fits, it almost looks good on you, but in the end, you just can’t be happy with it.

You can be in a similar situation when it comes to your career. If you like your job, but dislike your industry, it may be time for a change. That was definitely true for me.

My husband and I owned an independent auto repair shop for about 20 years. We ran an honest business in an industry that has a bad reputation for ripping people off. I remember one long-time customer who came to the shop with her brother. He was pretty sure he had to protect her because he believed, like with most auto shops, that we would probably try to sell her something she didn’t actually need. Honestly, I was thrilled when we finally sold it. These types of conversations where people always expected the worst of you got old and hard to deal with, year after year. And that doesn’t even account for people’s dismay when they have an unexpected $800 repair bill.

Then, there were the difficulties of actually doing the repairs. There could be a misdiagnosis, a part ordered that didn’t fix the problem, or people demanding car repairs be finished by 6 pm. Working with technicians when trying to deal with these issues can be challenging. Today, it’s very different. Technology changed over time, so most of the work actually needs to be done by the dealerships. You no longer repair things, you replace them. So, in my experience, I would never recommend that someone go into this industry!

How Do You Figure Out If an Industry Change Might Be Right For You?

There are so many things to consider when you are looking at moving into a new industry. Here are some of them:

  • Think about all of the things you like and dislike about the industries for your current and past jobs. Be as detailed in your analysis as what I shared above about the auto repair industry. Put some thought into what your daily work was like. What do you enjoy and what do you just tolerate?
  • Do some brainstorming about what other industries might be a better fit for you. Don’t just be practical about things like earning potential. Instead, let your passions be your guide. Did you ever dream of being a musician, but didn’t feel that you had the musical chops? Well, what else could you do in the music industry where you could utilize your current skills?
  • Take a stab at trying to identify transferable skills. What can you do that might be valued in another industry?
  • Consider adjacent industries for each job. If you’re having trouble, there is a general field out there that “helps people get jobs.” A few years ago, I started as a recruiter at Robert Half and then moved into two other adjacent industries as a resume writer and a career coach.
  • Put together a job search strategy and an action plan.
  • Reposition your resume to reflect your value for the new industry.
  • Practice interviewing on why someone should hire you rather than hire someone who is already in that industry.

You don’t have to be stuck in your current industry, but I know how hard it can be to explore options. That’s where a Career Coach comes in. I don’t have an agenda on what you should do. I just want you to be happy in your career!

Contact me today and we can get you started with some job search coaching so you can be successful in finding a new industry and a new career path.