It’s estimated that millions of Australians changed jobs in 2022 (aptly dubbed ‘The Great Reshuffle’), with the disruption of COVID causing many to re-think their careers or go in search of roles offering greater flexibility and benefits.
This trend is set to continue in 2023, particularly as our nation grapples with a serious and ongoing skills shortage. The opportunities are abundant, and ripe for the picking for anyone ready to make a change or take that next step in their career.
Yet applying for a new role isn’t always easy; especially if you’ve been in the same job for many years. Having to dust off your CV and prepare for interviews can be daunting, and sometimes enough to make you avoid the whole venture completely.
Instead of trying to come out guns blazing, it’s worth taking a pause and giving yourself time to reflect. You could ask:
- Am I really happy with where my current career is leading me?
- Why do I want a new role? Where will it take me?
- What have I done to prepare for this role?
- Do I know how to be competitive in the application process?
Becoming more mindful about your career
Sometimes life has a way of steering us in a particular direction, and it may not be anywhere close to where we once imagined we would end up.
A study by Microsoft in September of last year found that 62% of Australians (and 66% of managers) reported feeling burned out – the highest in the world, and well above the global average of 48%.
But simply moving mindlessly from one role to another is unlikely to tackle this issue at its core. If you’re unhappy at work, it may be that your entire career trajectory needs a re-think. This would allow you to chart a new course so you can move in a direction that better aligns with your personal goals and values.
Intentional career or job change has a way of producing the best outcomes – particularly over the long term. Having had first-hand experience with this, I know it’s not easy. I was fortunate to have a series of events happen in my life which forced me to reflect on my chosen early career. Although change was difficult, leaving that career behind and pursuing my passion has been one of the most rewarding decisions I’ve ever made.
If you don’t know what you want, there are some great tools that can help you decide. Alternatively, consider asking an executive coach for support. I often assist clients with career coaching, and use a number of proven techniques designed to uncover areas of interest, strengths and weaknesses, true aspirations, and more.
Preparing for change
When you’re ready to start the application process, don’t underestimate the value of preparation. Particularly if the roles you will apply for are quite senior, advanced preparation will improve your confidence and competitiveness against other applicants.
Throughout COVID, I assisted many clients with interview coaching who went on to land their desired role successfully. This is partly because they invested the effort to prepare and work out how best to present themselves.
“When I found myself in a working environment that had changed considerably and no longer aligned with my personal values, I had no hesitation turning to Kim for guidance and support. Working with Kim, I was able to confidently pursue alternate opportunities and landed a role that ticked all my boxes.”Anne, EL2 client in the APS
Interview coaching generally takes a couple of sessions and ends with a mock interview that includes a third person. This could be a person in my client’s network who can act as a critical friend, or someone in my network who I know can provide valuable feedback.
Occasionally I find a client doesn’t want to do a mock interview – either because they’re too nervous or feel it’s beneath them. Sadly, these people also tend to be less successful in their real interview. This is perhaps because they passed up a chance to experience the pressure and scrutiny ahead of time, while being in a safe setting where they had nothing to lose and everything to gain.
Lastly, it never hurts to seek help when readying your CV or application letter. I often work with a great graphic designer who I know has assisted people in creating eye-catching CVs. There are also many great copywriters who can help with structuring and editing your application to give it the best chance of success.
If 2022 was less than thrilling for you, then here’s to a bright new year! Let 2023 be the moment you finally take that new step, or next step, on the road to your perfect career.
For more information about career or interview coaching, simply book a free 15 minute coaching session.