Building a career? Read these important tips

Building a career? Read these important tips

What do I need to do before pursuing a career? What types of goals should I set for myself? How will I stay motivated? Developing a career plan can help you outline a clear path as you begin looking for a new job.

In this article, you’ll learn how to assess what you need to develop your career objective, how to write S.M.A.R.T. career goals, and how to create your own career plan. We’ll also provide some different techniques you can use to stay motivated as you work toward your goals.

The 9 most important career planning tips is listed below:

1. Never Stop Learning

Life-long learning is your keyword.

The world is constantly changing, and everybody is looking for new ways of doing business.

If you have decided that your current skills are good enough, you have also decided that your current job is good enough.

But if you want a career in the future, you should add regular updates to your skills and knowledge.

2. Ask, Listen And Learn

A good listener can learn a lot.

Listen to your co-workers, your boss, and your superiors. You can learn a lot from their experience.

Ask about issues that interest you, and listen to what they say. Let them tell you about how things work, and what you could have done better. Most people will love to be your free tutor.

3. Fulfill Your Current Job

Your current job might be best place to start your career.

It is often very little that separates successful people from the average. But nothing comes free.

If you do your job well and fulfill your responsibilities, this is often the best way to start a new career.

Talk to your supervisor about things you can do. Suggest improvements. Offer your help when help is needed. In return ask for help to build a better career. It is often possible – right inside your own organization – especially if you have proved to be a valued employee.

4. Build Your Network

Your next career step might arise from your contact network.

Did you know that more than 50% of all jobs are obtained from contact networks?

If you have a good contact network, it is also a good place to discover future careers, to explore new trends, and to learn about new opportunities.

Spend some time building new contacts, and don’t forget to maintain the ones you already have.

One of the best ways to get serious information from your network is to regularly ask your contacts how they are, what they do, and what is new about their careers.

5. Identify Your Current Job

Your current job should be identified, not assumed.

Make sure you don’t work with tasks you assume are important. This is waste of time and talent.

When you start in a new job, talk to your superior about your priorities. If you’re not sure about what is most important, then ask him. And ask him again. Often you will be surprised about the differences between what you assume, and what is really important.

6. Identify Your Next Job


Your dream job must be identified.

Before you start planning your future career, be sure you have identified your dream job.

In your dream job, you will be doing all the things you enjoy, and none of the things you don’t enjoy. What kind of job would that be?

Do you like or dislike having responsibility for other employees. Do you like to work with technology or with people? Do you want to run your own business? Do you want to be an artist, a designer or a skilled engineer? A manager?

Before building your future career your goal must be identified.

7. Prepare Yourself

Your dream might show up tomorrow. Be prepared.

Don’t wait a second. Update your CV now, and continue to update it regularly.

Tomorrow your dream job may show up right before your nose. Prepare for it with a professional CV and be ready to describe yourself as a valuable object to anyone that will try to recruit you.

If you don’t know how to write a CV, or how to describe yourself, start learning it now.

8. Pick The Right Tools

Pick the tools you can handle.

You can build your future career using a lot of different tools. Studying at W3Schools is easy. Taking a full master degree is more complicated.

You can add a lot to your career by studying books and tutorials (like the one you find at W3Schools). Doing short time courses with certification tests might add valuable weight to your CV. And don’t forget: Your current job is often the most valuable source of building new skills.

Don’t pick a tool that is too heavy for you to handle!

9. Realize Your Dreams

Put your dreams into action.

Don’t let a busy job kill your dreams. If you have higher goals, put them into action now.

If you have plans about taking more education, getting a better job, starting your own company or something else, you should not use your daily job as a “waiting station”. Your daily job will get more and more busy, you will be caught up in the rat race, and you will burn up your energy.

If you have this energy, you should use it now, to realize your dreams.

What to do for a successful career planning

What to do for a successful career planning

Career planning is not an activity that should be done once — in high school or college — and then left behind as we move forward in our jobs and careers. Rather, career planning is an activity that is best done on a regular basis — especially given the data that the average worker will change careers (not jobs) multiple times over his or her lifetime. And it’s never too soon or too late to start your career planning.

Career planning is not a hard activity, not something to be dreaded or put off, but rather an activity that should be liberating and fulfilling, providing goals to achieve in your current career or plans for beginning a transition to a new career. Career planning should be a rewarding and positive experience. Here, then, are 10 tips to help you achieve successful career planning.

1. Make Career Planning an Annual Event

Many of us have physicals, visit the eye doctor and dentist, and do a myriad of other things on an annual basis, so why not career planning? Find a day or weekend once a year — more often if you feel the need or if you’re planning a major career change — and schedule a retreat for yourself. Try to block out all distractions so that you have the time to truly focus on your career — what you really want out of your career, out of your life.

By making career planning an annual event, you will feel more secure in your career choice and direction — and you’ll be better prepared for the many uncertainties and difficulties that lie ahead in all of our jobs and career.

2. Map Your Path Since Last Career Planning

One of your first activities whenever you take on career planning is spending time mapping out your job and career path since the last time you did any sort of career planning. While you should not dwell on your past, taking the time to review and reflect on the path — whether straight and narrow or one filled with any curves and dead-ends — will help you plan for the future.

Once you’ve mapped your past, take the time to reflect on your course — and note why it looks the way it does. Are you happy with your path? Could you have done things better? What might you have done differently? What can you do differently in the future?

3. Reflect on Your Likes and Dislikes, Needs and Wants

Change is a factor of life; everybody changes, as do our likes and dislikes. Something we loved doing two years ago may now give us displeasure. So always take time to reflect on the things in your life — not just in your job — that you feel most strongly about.

Make a two-column list of your major likes and dislikes. Then use this list to examine your current job and career path. If your job and career still fall mostly in the like column, then you know you are still on the right path; however, if your job activities fall mostly in the dislike column, now is the time to begin examining new jobs and new careers.

Finally, take the time to really think about what it is you want or need from your work, from your career. Are you looking to make a difference in the world? To be famous? To become financially independent? To effect change? Take the time to understand the motives that drive your sense of success and happiness.

4. Examine Your Pastimes and Hobbies

Career planning provides a great time to also examine the activities you like doing when you’re not working. It may sound a bit odd, to examine non-work activities when doing career planning, but it’s not. Many times your hobbies and leisurely pursuits can give you great insight into future career paths.

Think you can’t make a hobby into a career? People do it all the time. The great painter Paul Gauguin was a successful business person who painted on the side. It actually wasn’t until he was encouraged by an artist he admired to continue painting that he finally took a serious look at his hobby and decided he should change careers. He was good at business, but his love was painting.

5. Make Note of Your Past Accomplishments

Most people don’t keep a very good record of work accomplishments and then struggle with creating a powerful resume when it’s time to search for a new job. Making note of your past accomplishments — keeping a record of them — is not only useful for building your resume, it’s also useful for career planning.

Sometimes reviewing your past accomplishments will reveal forgotten successes, one or more which may trigger researching and planning a career shift so that you can be in a job that allows you to accomplish the types of things that make you most happy and proud.

Developing a strategic vision for your career plan

Developing a strategic vision for your career plan

How many times will you change careers in your lifetime? If you’re like most people, you’ll change careers at least several times over the course of your life. How successful you’ll be in making transitions among careers can at least be partially attributed to the amount of career planning and preparation you’ve done.

Every job-seeker needs to take the time to step way from the day-to-day grind of work and spend quality time reflecting on your career and developing some plans for your future. Whether you love your current job and employer or feel frustrated and confined by your job, career planning can help. Think of career planning as building bridges from your current job/career to your next job/career; without the bridge, you may easily stumble or lose your way, but with the bridge there is safety and direction.

This article provides you with some basic guidelines for both short-term and long-term career planning.

Short-Term Career Planning

A short-term career plan focuses on a timeframe ranging from the coming year to the next few years, depending on the job-seeker. The key characteristic of short-term career planning is developing realistic goals and objectives that you can accomplish in the near future.

As you begin your career planning, take the time to free yourself from all career barriers. What are career barriers? There are personal barriers (such as lack of motivation, apathy, laziness, or procrastination), family pressure (such as expectations to work in the family business, follow a certain career path, or avoidance of careers that are below your status/stature), and peer pressure. And while career planning and career decision-making is an important aspect of your life, do not put so much pressure on yourself that it paralyzes you from making any real choices, decisions, or plans. Finally, career planning is an ever-changing and evolving process — or journey — so take it slowly and easily.

Long-Term Career Planning

Long-term career planning usually involves a planning window of five years or longer and involves a broader set of guidelines and preparation. Businesses, careers, and the workplace are rapidly changing, and the skills that you have or plan for today may not be in demand years from now. Long-range career planning should be more about identifying and developing core skills that employers will always value while developing your personal and career goals in broad strokes.

Developing a strategic vision for your career plan

Developing a strategic vision for your career plan

How many times will you change careers in your lifetime? If you’re like most people, you’ll change careers at least several times over the course of your life. How successful you’ll be in making transitions among careers can at least be partially attributed to the amount of career planning and preparation you’ve done.

Every job-seeker needs to take the time to step way from the day-to-day grind of work and spend quality time reflecting on your career and developing some plans for your future. Whether you love your current job and employer or feel frustrated and confined by your job, career planning can help. Think of career planning as building bridges from your current job/career to your next job/career; without the bridge, you may easily stumble or lose your way, but with the bridge there is safety and direction.

This article provides you with some basic guidelines for both short-term and long-term career planning.

Short-Term Career Planning

A short-term career plan focuses on a timeframe ranging from the coming year to the next few years, depending on the job-seeker. The key characteristic of short-term career planning is developing realistic goals and objectives that you can accomplish in the near future.

As you begin your career planning, take the time to free yourself from all career barriers. What are career barriers? There are personal barriers (such as lack of motivation, apathy, laziness, or procrastination), family pressure (such as expectations to work in the family business, follow a certain career path, or avoidance of careers that are below your status/stature), and peer pressure. And while career planning and career decision-making is an important aspect of your life, do not put so much pressure on yourself that it paralyzes you from making any real choices, decisions, or plans. Finally, career planning is an ever-changing and evolving process — or journey — so take it slowly and easily.

Long-Term Career Planning

Long-term career planning usually involves a planning window of five years or longer and involves a broader set of guidelines and preparation. Businesses, careers, and the workplace are rapidly changing, and the skills that you have or plan for today may not be in demand years from now. Long-range career planning should be more about identifying and developing core skills that employers will always value while developing your personal and career goals in broad strokes.

Hot careers with high pay potential

Hot careers with high pay potential

Want to pursue an in-demand career? Check out these six fast-growing careers with solid earning potential. One health care career has a median wage of $86K a year and is projected to grow 22% by 2020.

Medical and Health Services Manager

With all of the changes in the health care system in recent years, it’s no wonder that the U.S. Department of Labor projects medical and health services managers to be in great demand.

In fact, the Department of Labor projects job growth in this sector to be faster than the average, at 22 percent, from 2010 to 2020. One main reason for their projected growth? An increased number of physicians, patients, and procedures, the Department says. In effect, managers will be needed to organize and oversee the medical information and staffs.

To get into specifics, medical and health services managers work to improve the efficiency and delivery of health care services, says the Department. How? By keeping up on new laws and regulations for facilities, managing hospital finances, communicating with the members of medical staff, and more.

Education Options: Most medical and health service managers have at least a bachelor’s degree in health administration. However, a master’s degree in health services, public health, or business administration (MBA) is also common.

Median Annual Wage: $86,400
Wage for Top 10 Percent of Workers: $147,890
Wage for Bottom 10 Percent of Workers: $52,730

Hot careers with high pay potential

Accountant

Do you get fired up at the thought of balancing your checkbook? Do you absolutely love tax season – or at least not hate it? You could be accountant material, and that’s a good thing if you’re looking for a high-growth career.

In fact, the U.S. Department of Labor projects that nearly 200,000 accountant jobs will be created (a 16 percent increase) from 2010 to 2020. The Department of Labor says this stellar job forecast is due to the recent corporate financial crises and stricter laws and regulations in the financial sector – all of which require an increased focus on accounting.

As for their daily responsibilities, accountants do everything from help businesses reduce costs, prepare tax returns, examine financial statements, comply with financial regulations, and communicate with management about a business’s financial operations, says the Department.

Education Options: The majority of accountants and auditors need at least a bachelor’s degree in accounting or a related field. Some employers may prefer a master’s degree in accounting or business administration (MBA) with a concentration in accounting.

Median Annual Wage: $62,850
Wage for Top 10 Percent of Workers: $109,870
Wage for Bottom 10 Percent of Workers: $39,640

Elementary School Teacher

Do you want to pursue a growing career that involves mentoring the next generation? A gig as an elementary school teacher could be in your lesson plan.

Why? Because this career is hot – at least according to the U.S. Department of Labor’s 2012 list of “Occupations with the largest job growth.” Elementary teacher ranked number 15, with a projected 248,800 jobs created from 2010 to 2020. However, keep in mind that faster growth is expected in the South and West of the country, thanks to more student enrollment. Growth will be slower in the Midwest and Northeast.

Elementary school teachers teach grades first through fifth and sometimes sixth, seventh, and eighth, according to the Department of Labor. It goes on to say that these teachers often teach many subjects, like math, English, reading, and science.

Education Options: Every state requires public elementary teachers to earn a bachelor’s degree in elementary education and have a state-issued certification or license. Some states also require elementary school teachers to major in a specific content area, such as math or science.

Median Annual Wage: $52,840
Wage for Top 10 Percent of Workers: $81,230
Wage for Bottom 10 Percent of Workers: $34,910

Network and Computer Administrators

Can you name one medium-sized to big business that isn’t totally or partially dependant on computers? We’re guessing you’re drawing a blank right now. So it’s no surprise that the U.S. Department of Labor projects jobs for network and computer administrators to grow by a whopping 28 percent, or nearly 100,000 positions, by 2010 to 2020.

The Department of Labor says this is because businesses will invest in newer, faster technology and require better security. As a result, “More administrators with proper training will be needed to reinforce network and system security,” says the Department.

In terms of their day-to-day tasks, network and computer administrators organize, install, and support a business’s computer systems. If you’re a computer lover, you’ll likely also love this gig, since your work life will be dealing with such things as local area networks (LANs), wide area networks (WANs), and intranets, adds the Department.

Education Options: A bachelor’s degree in a computer or information science related field is most common for this career. Some positions, however, require only an associate’s degree or a certificate in a computer field, along with some related work experience.

Median Annual Wage: $70,970
Wage for Top 10 Percent of Workers: $112,210
Wage for Bottom 10 Percent of Workers: $43,400

Human Resources Specialist

Are you a good judge of people? Maybe you have a knack for ascertaining their strengths and weaknesses? If so, a career as a human resources specialist might be worth considering – especially since it is projected to have stellar job opportunities.

How stellar? According to the U.S. Department of Labor, the occupation of human resources specialist is projected to grow by 21 percent from 2010 to 2020. That’s due to a number of factors, including the increased emphasis on finding and keeping quality employees.

As a human resources specialist, you would help recruit, screen, and place workers into appropriate positions. You also might do things like assess company needs, interview job applicants, process their paperwork, and perform employee orientations, says the Department of Labor.

Education Options: “Most positions require a bachelor’s degree,” says the Department. “When hiring a human resources generalist, for example, most employers prefer applicants who have a bachelor’s degree in human resources, business, or a related field.”

Median Annual Wage: $54,310
Wage for Top 10 Percent of Workers: $94,700
Wage for Bottom 10 Percent of Workers: $29,850

Registered Nurse

Are you looking for a career that helps people improve their health? Look no further than registered nursing. These are the caregivers who perform diagnostic tests and explain patient treatments, among other things, according to the U.S. Department of Labor. You’ll also be happy to hear that these vital health care workers will be in great demand.

In fact, the Department of Labor put registered nurses at the top of its 2012 list of “Occupations with the largest job growth.” It projects more than 700,000 nursing jobs to be created from 2010 to 2020 (that’s a 26 percent growth rate, by the way).

What gives for this high growth? The Department says “Growth will occur primarily because of technological advancements; an increased emphasis on preventive care; and the large, aging baby boomer population who will demand more health care services as they live longer and more active lives.”

Education Options: An associate’s degree in nursing (ADN) or a diploma from an approved nursing program are two education paths commonly taken by registered nurses. They must also be licensed.

Median Annual Wage: $65,950
Wage for Top 10 Percent of Workers: $96,630
Wage for Bottom 10 Percent of Workers: $44,970

5 Tips to prepare your first job interview

5 Tips to prepare your first job interview

You have completed high school or college and now you’re ready for your first “real” job. You have sent resumes and were called for your first interview. How can you do well in the interview so that you end up being offered the position?

1. Dress professionally. No belly shirts, low cut blouses or flip-flops, because you will work and not the beach. Although it is not necessary to buy a costume, it is particularly important to look professional. If you try to get a job in an office as a conservative accounting firm, do not dress like you’re going to a concert. If you apply for a retail job, you have a little more free. Rather than list and this garment is not acceptable, I would tell you to dress as if you were going to meet one of the most important people in your life because you are!

2. Make sure you are well groomed. Do not look like you just get out of bed and could not bother to take care of basic personal hygiene. Nothing is going to be the HR Manager interview to a close faster than dirty hair, dirty nails and body odor. As an employee, you will be a reflection of society and no customer wants to do business with someone uneducated.

3. Be aware of your body language. A firm handshake at the beginning of the interview shows that you are confident. Maintain eye contact, stay relaxed and pay attention to the interviewer. Ask questions and listen thoughtfully to the answers. Think before you answer the questions the interviewer will walk and keep the conversation on the subject.

4. Be prepared for the interview. Research the company in advance, each company now has a website where you can learn what they do and who their clients. This shows the interviewer that you are interested in the job and took the initiative to find everything I could about the company.

5. Be present in the interview. I interviewed candidates who have acted as if they were waiting for a bus. They do not ask questions but simply listened to me, and I was not really sure if they were attentive. Be enthusiastic, ask questions and participate in the interview. After listing all the functions required for the position, I asked a candidate if this sounds like something she was interested in His answer was easy, “I can do the job.” She did not answer my question, she seemed indifferent and did not get the job. If you can not be excited in the interview, you will not be excited to work either.

First impressions count, and want to let the interviewer that you want the job, are willing to work hard and do your best. You may not necessarily be the most qualified candidate, but still get the job because you were the person most remarkable. Good luck!

Job-search moves you should avoid

Job-search moves you should avoid

Eager candidates often make these giant blunders without even knowing it.

The phone call desperate post-interview, the proclamation of self-doubt, and means more to deny blundering your chances of winning the job. Despite economic recovery, employers are often slow to display the offers and make hiring decisions. It’s a frustrating situation that can lead to job applicants who wish to act against-productive, timing promising opportunities. Here is our list of 10 real-life job search failures, we hope to serve as cautionary tales job seekers. Do not reproduce these acts against-productive.

Gratuitous infliction interrogation

I was reviewing resumes and found one that stands out in a positive way. I sent an email of the sender and asked if he had one minute to speak by telephone. “I could,” he wrote back. “Where is the company located, what is the starting salary, which is the CEO, and how long have you been in business?” That was the end of the correspondence, our address is on our home page, the salary was included in the job, and the history of the company (including the date of creation and leadership bios) was in the About section of our site. In its haste to ensure its time was not wasted, a reasonable goal, in my opinion, the gentleman asked me to answer four questions that had already been answered if he had done some homework. Lesson: It is to guard against time-sucking job advertisements or even false, but doing so that you do not shoot in the foot.

Forget who you are interviewing with

The Executive Director of a small not for profit sharing that story with me. “I miraculously have enough money of my commission to hire a marketing director last year,” she said. “I was on the moon. I had a job opening to fill valuable. I interviewed five people, three of them from industry and two non-profit world. One of the people in the industry was super intelligent and insightful.

Sadly, she knocked out of the race halfway through the interview. “” How? “I wanted to know.” I asked him to tell me a story that illustrates how it rolls. I told him to think about our agency and five people we need in marketing, and tell me a story of his career that would make it clear that it belongs here. She told me a story about a 24-month project intranet development involving 60 people across functions and six or seven levels of the organization approvals. I was almost asleep when she finished. I think this lady really needs a big company atmosphere. “The history of the job seeker intranet shouted” I do not understand Scrappy non-profit at all. “Lesson: In your job search written communication and especially on an interview, keep your stories and questions relevant to the issues the hiring manager is.

Selling Yourself Short

A friend of an employment agency told me this story. Last summer, she was a candidate on the short list of two finalists for a position in sales management plum. She had just gotten on the phone with the hiring manager, who said: “I have to sleep on it, but I think your guy is Frank get the job tomorrow,” when Frank himself called it. “Do not be angry against me,” says Frank. “Oh, no,” said the officer. “What were you doing, Frank?”

Frank had received the fear and called the hiring manager to say, “If you do not want me in the spot sales manager, I will take a sales territory assignment.” The director was hired in the work territory involved and the other finalist for the work of sales management. The lady agency did not say how he would come to Frank paid the increase, more jobs. Lesson: stay the course. You will never show the employer what you are worth, or to persuade them that you need, crawling.

You leave Vanquish minor adversity

“I am so frustrated with my job search,” said one man I met at the library. “I had an interview last week, and when I got to 20 after 5, the door was locked,” he said. “Did you go back?” I asked. “Did you call or text or HR hiring manager?” “No, I went home,” said the gentleman. “When I returned, there was a message telling me the door was locked and I should go there, but I left the house before the message arrived.”

“Did you see?” I asked. “No, I thought the opportunity was lost.” “Call them!” I said. He did, but they had already completed the task. Lesson: the types of recruitment business are no different from someone else, they make mistakes . In an interview back in my 20s, I toured the entire building looking for an open door for an interview for 5:30, and I finally crossed the loading dock for Show your ingenuity to get by rolling with the punches interview.

Sending a thank-generic

I interviewed a brilliant young man for a role of business development. “Look, Barry,” I said. “I assure you that we are on the same page. Over the next two days, send me an e-mail and tell me what you heard today. It need not be long. Just write a couple of paragraphs on what you see as our competitive position and how you approach the assignment as I know we will be in sync.

“Barry gladly accepted. An hour later, I had the generic post-interview thank you e-mail from Barry, saying,” Dear Ms. Ryan, Thank you very much for chatting with me today. I’m excited to work for your business and I know will do a great job. “Today we would call an Epic Fail in the department, showing understanding. Lesson: What the hiring manager asks you or not, make post-interview thank you a summary of the conversation in an intelligent manner, emphasizing that the company faces and how you are equipped to meet these challenges.

Offering a package (double) incorrect information

A reader called me for advice, saying, “I am targeting an opening Product Manager at Company X. I go to a trade show where they are exposed. “We talked about the visit of the company’s booth and chat with employees. A week later, she called again.” I visited the stand but everyone was busy, so I left a package for the sales manager.” “Hmm, the sales manager? “I asked. I thought a likely level of sales director for the interest Job search of an employee not selling packages deposited during a trade show chaotic. What was in the package? “I left him a note to an article I wrote for a newspaper of industry some years ago, ” she said.

“Was the article about Company X?” I asked. “No,” she said, “It was a story about the software documentation.” Unfortunately, the company X is not a software company. Busy working people are inundated with information. Search Job Openings must be specific. My partner could have obtained the name of the hiring manager through a short conversation if she had stuck around this stand as the crew lounge had one minute to discuss. Section n unrelated has not helped his cause and was likely thrown into the recycling bin. Lesson: Your target is the person hiring manager. Other random people in the organization in general are not great unless that led ‘They are your friends. And all the materials you send must be clear what you want and why anyone should care.

Frantically self-doubt

The CEO of a technology start-up called me. “What now?” he said. “I ran an ad, and a lady wrote to me immediately with a large e-mail. I answered saying, “I’d love to talk when you have time. “She wrote to tell me she is not all that technique, and I replied by saying that we need more than just technical people. She wrote again to make sure I knew that ‘It really is not anything technical. At that time, I tried to understand why she responded to the ad at all, but his resume was great, so I said,’ Let’s just get together and go from there.”

Then she wrote again to ask if there would be technical tests at interview. We do not use anything like that, but I lost faith at that point and gave up. Please tell your readers to go with the flow. There is no point in you acing out of employment opportunities because you fear you might get ejected at some point later in the process. “Lesson: Work of the process. At a minimum, you make valuable contacts, learn new things, practice your interview skills, and give you a reason to get dressed.

Worst mistakes career changers make

Worst mistakes career changers make

You can be a nasty surprise if you’re not careful before changing fields.

Career change is never easy. Half the world thinks you’ve lost your mind, headhunters say you never work again and your loved ones contribute the old “I told you so” routine. But for many people burned out, bored or multiple talents that are sitting on skills they do not get a chance to use, modify the fields is the only way to avoid losing their marbles.

Regardless of your career change strategy, never make these 10 mistakes:

1. Don’t Look for a Job in Another Field Without Some Intense Introspection

Nothing is worse than leaping before you look. Make sure you’re not escape a field that suits you just as bad as the last. Be sure you do a thorough self-assessment first.

2. Don’t Look for Hot Fields Unless They’re a Good Fit for You

You would not try to sneak into your skinny cousin, so why try a field because it works for him? People trying to help and will do the equivalent of whispering “plastics” in your ear. Instead of jumping to their suggestion, take the time to consider your options. Decide what you really want to do. When you enter a field just because it’s hot, burnout is not far behind.

3. Don’t Go into a Field Because Your Friend Is Doing Well in It

Get in-depth information on the fields you are considering networking, reading and doing research online. Having informational interviews with alumni from your college, colleagues, friends and family is a fun way to get the scoop on different fields.

4. Don’t Stick to Possibilities You Already Know About

Stretch your perception of what might work for you. Read job profiles and explore career fields that you learn about self-assessment exercises.

5. Don’t Let Money Be the Deciding Factor

There is not enough money in the world to make you happy if your job does not suit you. Job dissatisfaction and stress is a health issue No. 1 for working adults. This is particularly true for career changers, who often earn less until they get their sea legs in a different field.

6. Don’t Keep Your Dissatisfaction to Yourself or Try to Make the Switch Alone

It’s time to talk to people (probably not your boss for now). Friends, family and colleagues need to know what is going on so they can help you tap into this large percentage of jobs that are not advertised.

7. Don’t Go Back to School Unless You’ve Done Some Test-Drives in the New Field

You’re never too old for an internship, volunteer experience or trying your hand at a contract assignment in a new area. There are many ways to get an experience that will not cost you anything except your time. A new piece may or may not make the world sit up and take notice. Be sure where you want to go before you put yourself through the pain and debt of another program.

8. Be Careful When Using Placement Agencies or Search Firms

Do some research to be sure to find a good match. Ask those who work in the area you are trying to enter or other changers successful career for suggestions. Try to find a company that knows how to be creative when placing career changers – not one that focuses solely on the movement of people on the ladder in the same field.

9. Don’t Expect a Career Counselor to Tell You Which Field to Enter

Counsellors are facilitators, and they’ll follow your lead. They can help find your long-buried dreams and talents, but you have to do research and decision making for yourself. Anyone who promises to tell you what to do is dangerous.

10. Don’t Expect to Switch Overnight

A complete career change usually will take a minimum of six months to shoot, and time often stretches to a year or more.

Changing fields is one of the most invigorating things you can do. It’s like living young again, except with the wisdom of any age you are now.

How to speed up a career switch

How to speed up a career switch

A hot career could be closer than you think. Check out these 5 careers you could start with an associate’s degree.

Associate’s Degree Career 1: Medical Assistant

Want to work in the growing health care field – without spending years and years in medical school? Look into earning an associate’s degree in medical assisting.

Medical assistants are indispensible to the operation of health practitioner offices, often handling a range of administrative tasks including obtaining patients’ medical history and scheduling appointments.

Career Growth: The U.S. Department of Labor predicts that employment for medical assistants will grow 34 percent between 2008 and 2018.

Average Earning Potential: $29,760 per year.

Associate’s Degree Career 2: Computer Support Specialist

If you want a quick-prep career that will incorporate your love of technology, consider earning an associate’s degree in tech support or information technology, which could prepare you to pursue opportunities as a computer support specialist.

Computer support specialists help people with their computer problems. Some work out of call centers, where they try to help customers figure out what’s wrong with their computer. Others might be on the staff of a company or school.

Career Growth: The U.S. Department of Labor predicts the field will grow by 14 percent between 2008 and 2018.

Average Earning Potential: $49,930 per year.

Associate’s Degree Career 3: Paralegal

Love the law, but don’t want to spend years in law school? Consider studying to pursue paralegal career opportunities through an associate’s degree program.

If you’ve seen the Oscar-winning film “Erin Brockovich,” you know that a career as a paralegal can be far from boring. And while it’s not all Hollywood glamour and sticking it to the man, paralegals do perform many of the same exciting tasks as attorneys, such as researching cases and conducting interviews.

Career Growth: This exciting career is seeing equally exciting growth – the U.S. Department of Labor predicts the field will grow 28 percent between 2008 and 2018.

Average Earning Potential: $49,640 per year.

Associate’s Degree Career 4: Bookkeeper

Love to crunch numbers? Prepare to pursue bookkeeping opportunities by earning an associate’s degree in accounting.

Financial records are often the most important aspect for any business, and bookkeepers are the ones who make sure they are complete and accurate.

Career Growth: The U.S. Department of Labor calls this “one of the largest growth occupations in the economy,” and predicts that the field will add about 212,400 new jobs between 2008 and 2018.

Average Earning Potential: $35,340 per year.

Associate’s Degree Career 5: Real Estate Agent

If you want to pursue real estate opportunities, an associate’s degree in business is a great place to start, especially if the college or university you choose offers real estate-specific courses. Note: All states also require that real estate agents be licensed – and licensure requirements will vary by state.*

Real estate agents manage and negotiate the sale of homes, offices, and other buildings. They might help people who want to buy a house or help those who want to sell.

Career Growth: While it might seem like the housing market is still on the decline, job growth is projected to increase by 14-19 percent between 2008 and 2018, according to the U.S. Department of Labor.

Average Earning Potential: $52,490 per year.

Work habits that ruin careers

Work habits that ruin careers

If you have a disorder or a drug addict multitasking desktop email, change your habits pronto.

Experts agree that the climate of current employment, the bad behavior of employers something becomes less and less tolerated – and more than a passable offense. “To all of you, there’s a 100 people lined up to take your work,” says Kiki Weingarten, a career management coach based in New York. “Employers are more able than ever to be as picky as they want.”

Here, four leading career coaches offer bad work habits they saw that send employees on the road to bad reviews. Check yourself before you wreck.

You are addicted to email: In meetings with clients, your boss, you can not stop scrolling through your BlackBerry. You think you’re being productive by ensuring that you do not miss a message while stuck in the weekly sales, but your colleagues (especially speaking) see it as a personal insult. Constantly checking your smart phone sends a real sense of arrogance, says Princeton, New Jersey-based communication coach Matt Eventoff.

How to break it: Put down the BlackBerry,” said Eventoff,” especially if you’re in a meeting “Turn it off, put it away, leave it in your office.” If you are waiting for a particular time. sensitive email, let your colleagues know in advance, “Eventoff said,” Otherwise, your BlackBerry has no place in the meeting.”

You are a brown-noser: Nobody likes a kiss-up, and in the office one too many well-placed compliments could leave you with this reputation vilified. Say yes to everything to him a higher demand, and your teammates can easily return your enthusiasm. Even worse, your boss can see through your constant praise and you feel more a nuisance than a constructive team member.

How to break it: Take a look at the last 10 things that you said yes, if the views of your supervisor or tasks in the office. Is there something you do not agree when you think honestly about them? Learn to say no every now and then show both your supervisor and your teammates that you actually a spine.

You are a busy-body: Do you mind your own business or is your ear constantly perked for the latest gossip or happenings in office? Check yourself. You used to need to be in the know is probably a source of stress for your colleagues. Whether the movement of their colleagues within the company or is WHO meeting for post-work cocktails, do what your company spells trouble.

How to break it: If the information you need to do in your position, schedule weekly meetings with colleagues and team meeting to stay on top of relevant happenings. Otherwise wait until the information comes to you and avoid the temptation to jump into the conversations heard. If all else fails, invest in a helmet.

Your e-mail etiquette is lacking: If your outbox reads more like a firing squad as friendly exchanges, it may be time to take a look at your communication style. “It’s very rare that the emails are perceived as too soft,” said Eventoff. “As email has no tone, no emotion, no intonation, it is very easy for your emails short to be perceived as arrogant, demanding and impatient.”

How to break it: If the poor email habits persist, the bad feelings are bound to stir in a team, Eventoff said. Get into the habit of reading e-mails before sending, and measure how they might be received, especially if they are addressed to someone outside your office.

You’re full of excuses: You forgot the zip drive with your presentation notes, but you’re not about to admit it. You do not know the answer to questions of your supervisor, but try to talk your way around. The result is that you lose not only your own time, but your manager and colleagues as well.

How to break it: Set a reminder ten minutes before the start of each meeting of your case, says Patrick Flannery, a management consultant based in Arlington, Virginia. “Better 10 minutes of your time to gather the necessary paperwork and collect your thoughts while 20 minutes devoted to apologize in front of colleagues.”