How to start a career in 8 steps

Whether you are entering the workforce for the first time or you are interested in making a career change, it is important to know where to start. Knowing how to get started can help you navigate your job search and reduce any associated stress. Learning how to launch a particular career also ensures efficient use of your time and resources. In this article, we explain what to know before starting a career and list the steps and tips to help you start your profession.

related: Top tips for starting a new career

What do you need to know before starting a career?

Before starting your career, it is important to keep several things in mind. Preparing for this stage of your life can increase your chances of success. There are three things to keep in mind before starting a career:

  • Strong resume: Prepare to write an effective resume that best highlights your skills, experience, education and achievements. A strong and well-organized resume gives you a better chance of securing employment.
  • transferable skills: While it is important to develop all of your skills, keep in mind that you can use your soft skills in a variety of industries. Work on strengthening your transferable skills in case you take on a job unrelated to your first career in the future.
  • Teaching Qualification: Employers want employees who are willing to learn on the job. Even if you have completed your academic career, remain teaching qualified to help you advance in your career.

how to start career

Before starting your career, it’s important to have a strategic plan to help you find success. Here are some steps to help you navigate the process of starting your career:

1. Make a List of Your Interests and Talents

Make a list of your hobbies, skills, and passions. Consider anything you enjoy doing — even if it’s not related to a traditional career. For example, if you enjoy spending time outside, cooking or helping other people, list what you accomplish about each of these activities. Note down any themes or patterns in your lists to help you find a suitable career match. Identifying your talents and hobbies can help you figure out what you’re passionate about and what career might be a good fit for you.

2. Consider Your Career Preferences

Determine what type of job you want and what you want out of your career. Knowing your career aspirations can help you determine what type of education you need and what types of positions to apply for.

In addition, consider your preferences in terms of the job’s commute times, its location, its average salary, and its specific work schedule. Identifying these criteria can help you prioritize and narrow down your research.

3. Review Your Qualifications

Each job in the workforce requires specific skills and qualifications. Before pursuing a career, consider your education level and your abilities. Assessing your skills and qualifications can help you determine the next steps for your professional development and future career. It can also help you identify which jobs might align with your current credentials.

4. Research Industry and Careers

Research different jobs and industries that best suit your qualifications and interests. For example, if you love science and helping people, consider a job in the healthcare industry. Use an online search engine to research industries and jobs in various sectors. Read the job description to learn more about the responsibilities of each position and the skills required to determine whether you are qualified for the position.

5. Consider Volunteering or Interning

Consider becoming a volunteer or apprentice to provide you with more insight into a career or industry. Online research opportunities or talk to your college’s career center to learn about various intern or volunteer positions that you might find interesting. Keep in mind that most internships or volunteer opportunities do not offer you monetary compensation. However, they can provide you with valuable experience to help you in your future endeavours. In addition, interning or volunteering gives you the opportunity to shadow working professionals and ask them about their jobs. Hearing about their experiences can help you make a well-informed career decision.

6. Find a Patron

Connect with a professional working in the industry you are interested in. Establishing a professional relationship with someone in your potential field can help you gain valuable insight and advice based on their personal experiences. Consider researching industry professionals whose work you admire or whose jobs you find interesting. Then, connect with them via email. A mentor can also connect you with other industry professionals who can help you establish your career further.

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7. Pursue the Right Qualification

Once you’ve made a career choice, research the general requirements for the job you’re interested in. Some jobs require certain degrees or certificates. After your research, spend time pursuing general qualifications for the job you want if you don’t already have one.

8. Apply for the Posts

After you’ve pursued the general qualifications for the job you’re interested in, research open positions. Once you find a job that suits your qualifications, submit an application online or in person. Keep in mind that different companies may have different requirements for the same job title. Therefore, carefully review the description of the job you are interested in to ensure that you meet the specific requirements for that role.

related: How to apply for a job in 6 easy and effective steps

career start tips

If you’re new to the workforce, develop a strategy to help you find a career that best fits your interests and qualifications. Here are some tips to help you start your career:

Be open minded and curious

If you are just starting your career, be flexible throughout the process. Be open to exploring different career paths or industries that you may not originally find interesting. Consider asking professionals from different industries for their experiences. Your curiosity may introduce you to career possibilities that you may not have considered before.

be active and patient

Actively seek work and continue to apply for the positions you are qualified for. Be enthusiastic throughout the process. However, keep in mind that finding the most suitable career path can take time. So, while it’s important to be proactive, make sure you have the patience to endure the job search process.

related: How to Succeed at Your New Job: The First Week, Month and 90 Days

strengthen your skills

As you begin your first career, make sure you have strong skills in your chosen field. If you have the right skills for the job, you are more likely to stand out as a strong candidate. Develop your skills through continuing education courses, workshops and exercises.

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