You're stuck at a desk, thinking about how over this job you are. Am I going to be stuck in this same role forever?! Can I do this for another five years? Yet you find yourself paralysed. How do I get out? How do I make the jump?
Never fear, there are some simple steps you can take right now to get the job you want, and they don't involve telling your boss where to shove it. These are tactics you can use in your current role, which won't undermine it in any way. After all, you don't want to lose your old job before securing a new one.
So how do you make moves towards your new job without kicking up a stink? Follow these steps.
1 ) Diversify your role
Think about the skills needed in the role you want, are you doing any of those things in your current job? Could you get experience within your current role/ company that will give you the step up compared to your competition? Think broadly.
You may be going for a completely different position, but there will still be overlap. Does each role involve managing a team? Or project coordination? Do both jobs use the same software? Is it essential to be able to liaise with executive teams?
Speak to your manager about adding tasks into your current position. No manager will turn down you asking for more work! Questions you can ask include:
• I see my colleague does X within their role, am I able to work with them on it?
• I am really interested in X, can I allocate two hours a week to including it within my own role?
• Is there some training I can take on X within this company?
• I believe X great skill could be a real asset to this company. Would you be interested in incorporating it into my role?
• Is there a way I can help the company by adding new roles to my current job?
Look at the job description for jobs you want, consider what skills they need and see if there is a way you can get that experience within your current role.
2 ) Create new contacts
A great way to get into a role you want is to start speaking to the people currently doing the work you wish you were doing. This works in two ways; it puts you on their radar and gives you an inside into what daily life may be like in their role.
Approach this with care; the aim isn't to come off as selling yourself, it's an enquiry. Ask them about their role, how they got there, mention it's something that you would like to get into. People love advising others, so ask questions. Listen and see if you can follow in their footsteps.
Don't be afraid to reach out on LinkedIn, social media or email. You can start off with something like.
I really love the work you do and would like to get into the field. Would you be open to chatting about your role? I'd like to ask you a couple of questions to get a feel for the position. Questions such as; Do you have any tips on making it in your field? Anything you wish you had done differently?
I look forward to hearing from you.
Remember; the worst response is no response. Reach out to multiple people; you never know where it may lead.
3 ) Give your self an end date
Working on a timeline can be a great way to motivate yourself to take action. Give yourself an end date in your current role. Don't be afraid to tell yourself; I'll be in a new position by June. Give yourself a target, so you have a goal to reach too. Then start taking the actions to make it happen.
If you knew your job was ending in 4 months, would you start looking for work now? Pretend you have a redundancy coming up. Some things to consider would be:
Do you need to re-do your resume?
Do you need to start looking for available roles?
Do you need to study?
Can you do volunteer work to gain experience?
Can you start to ween off your current work commitments to make more time to explore other roles?
What steps can you take now to take you closer to giving your notice?
4 ) Voice it!
A lot of people think about changing roles yet don't actually voice it. Then end up disappointed when they don't get the opportunity they hoped for. No one can help you to the next step if they don't know you desire to be there. You can speak of your next career move without compromising your current role if you know the right way. Try these.
• I am really enjoying my job, but I'd love to get experience in X role.
• I'm thinking of stretching my skills by looking into this role. What do you think?
• I have such a passion for X I'd really like to do more of it.
• I think my next move should be….
It is possible to voice a need for change without speaking down about your current role. You never know what connection may come from speaking about a role you enjoy. It may even be a distant connection from another company that comes through from a colleague, you won’t know unless you verbalise it.
5 ) Pimp up that resume.
Don't leave this until the last minute. I know it's the dreaded task, but having a few resumes targeted at different jobs on hand can be a lifesaver when you see the right position. Take a couple of hours out of your day one day to re-do your resume. Look at different resume styles.
If the role is very different from the one you are in now should you use a skills-based resume instead?
Do you have a few talents? If so look at creating a resume for each, highlighting different skills based on the job you are going for.
If you are going for a managerial role, highlight that experience, working more on the side of operations, highlight that within the role. Your work history may not change but the blurb describing your experience can.
Don't be afraid of having three to four different resumes trailored to specific roles. Also, note you can leave jobs off resumes that don't fit the current position you are going for (At a certain age, no one needs to know about your crappy high school jobs).
Using these five steps will help you to take action. Moving you closer to a role you feel satisfied in, without compromising on your current job. Remember you set your time frame, one that works for you. Start at a pace that feels comfortable; once you have taken one step, the rest will fall into place.