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On the Fast Track: How to Start a New Career Quickly

The need for a career change can come for so many reasons. Are you in a rut professionally and feel uninspired in your field? Is your industry not hiring? Do you feel like your talents are better suited for another role? Or are you simply just looking for a career that is fulfilling and helps others?

If you answered yes to any of these questions, you are not alone. In fact, according to a report by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average number of years a person stays with a company is only 4.2 years, which is down from 4.6 years in 2014.

This number grows even smaller for people ages 25 to 34, who only stay with their job for a few 2.8 years on average. In fact, with the growing number of job searching tools, easily accessible on your cell phone, it’s never been easier to find a job that matches your skill sets.

The question is, though, how do you pick up and start over? What if you have built up skills in one industry, but want to begin working in a different field. Or, what if you have no experience, but just an interest in a new career path?

Starting a New Career: Where to Begin?

When we are young, one of the most common questions we are asked is the simple, “what do you want to be when you grow up?”

As a “grown up” now, you are probably discovering just how overwhelming that question can be. For many of us, we have not taken our dream job from youth and followed through on it in adulthood. Often, our dreams as kids were not practical, took a lot of time and money to achieve, or were not attainable based on how and what we learned growing up.

Now, when you ask yourself what you would like to “be” for your career, it can feel overwhelming; however, it’s pretty exciting, too! The world is open for you to try anything, be anyone, and make a step that is important for your personal growth and well-being. Congratulations!

If you are not certain what career path is right for you, it is important to ask yourself some guiding questions to get to the heart of what you want and why.

What motivates you?

What gets you out of the bed in the morning? What pushes you to try new things and to develop new skills? When you can get to the heart of what intrinsically motivates you, you can become happier and more successful.

Some examples of what motivates people are:

  • Helping others
  • Learning something new each day
  • Trying different tasks to keep you active and interested
  • Doing something that makes your family proud
  • Feeling the sense of accomplishment at the end of the day

More than anything, you need a job that motivates you more than just a paycheck. By finding the drive within yourself to do good work, you can keep moving forward to thrive in your career.

What inspires you?

Inspiration can be found anywhere. Being outside, talking to people unlike yourself, working with your hands to create something, or seeing someone else accomplish a great obstacle – these are all ways that inspiration can push us to be better versions of ourselves.

When thinking about what inspires you, think about moments when you have wanted to take action and be a helper. What were those moments? Did you see someone on the side of the road with a flat tire, and felt drawn to help? Did you have someone say they want to get in shape, and you immediately offered some diet and exercise tips? Sometimes these traits can have direct connections to a career path.

If you are inspired by more abstract things, such as a great song or book, you know that your brain seeks beauty and creating meaning in life. If you are inspired by a fascinating story about moments of bravery and courage, perhaps you are inspired by people who take chances and end up saving the day.

When you are inspired by – either by ideas or something specific – you can guide yourself towards the right working environment. Being inspired means never being bored!

What is your personality?

Often, our personality types have a great deal to do with what career fits best. For instance, someone who is an extrovert may have a distinct need to connect and work with others. That means that working quietly in a cubicle is not the best work environment for you.

Still, knowing your personality goes beyond how you interact with others, as an introvert or extrovert. Your personality also determines how you see the world, how you learn things, what makes sense to you, and how you react to everyday life. Having insight into your personality can be very valuable.

This type of honest introspection can sometimes be hard. Ask friends or family how they would describe your personality. Take a personality test, such as the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator. Once you have a better sense of who you are, and how you interact with others, you can look at careers that could be a good match.

Now that you have taken the time to look inwardly, now it is time to look out into the real world: what job is out there that fits your motivations, inspirations, and personality?

How to Get into a New Job Fast

Knowing who you are and what you want to get out of a job is half the battle. The other half is making a plan of action.

One of the scariest parts of starting a new career is how to make the first move. For many careers, it is difficult to simply walk in, ask someone to teach you, and then be ready to go immediately. Be realistic in your approach. Know that, as anything worth waiting for does, good things can take a little time.

With the right planning and direction, though, you can enter the workforce in less time than you imagined. Once you have identified a career field that feels right for you, you can then look for programs that can quickly teach you everything you need to know in your new job.

Follow the checklist below, and mark off your to-dos for finding the right program for you:

Think about the career that speaks to your personality and ambitions
Determine if this is a career move that can be done quickly and easily
Find out what the steps are for making this career move
Do you need a high school diploma or your GED to begin?
Learn how much it may cost to be trained in this field
Research where there are nearby programs to make this transition happen
Ask if the program allows you to have hands-on learning experiences to train you in the field
See what the timeline is from program start time to career-ready finish time

Once you have completed this to-do list, you can begin to narrow down what your options are for a new career, and to understand what needs to be done to get there. By taking time and making this investment in yourself, you can have a career that pays for itself within a matter of years.

What Industries are Hiring the Most Jobs Right Now?

While you want to follow a career path that fulfills you, you also want to be sure that the field you choose is in fact hiring. It would be difficult to take the time and money to invest in learning about a new career, then have nothing to come from it.

After the Great Recession hit in the late 2000s, many jobs were lost and unable to bounce back, due to advancements in technology and changes in hiring priorities. However, during that time and especially now that the job market has turned around, there are still some careers that have remained necessary and resilient.

According to an article by the Seattle Times, there are certain industries that are always needed, and they are technical skills that must be learned. As the article title says, “hands-on workers are hanging on.” That means that professions that require a specific skill set – such as automotive technicians, cosmetologists, and refrigeration/HVAC specialists – are not going anywhere and also not likely to get outsourced to other countries. These are services that are still widely needed and require the correct training to be hired.

In another article from Forbes magazine, there is evidence that jobs are continuing to grow for those with STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) positions. These positions typically require more advanced skill sets and training, such as positions in the healthcare and technology fields, which are always growing and will continue to be necessary now and in the future.

The key to finding an industry that is hiring is having skills that not many people have. For instance, if you are solely focused on one area that has required little training, you are much more easily replaced in the workforce. Instead, training to be part of a strong industry makes you a necessary part of that trade’s ability to thrive and do good work.

How Long Does it Take to Complete a Career Program?

Just like any type of career, the training for each type of job can vary. Additionally, different specialities can increase the length of time it takes, but can also make you a more marketable candidate for a future position.

At IntelliTec College, we serve the Colorado and New Mexico areas with an array of programs that prepare graduates for fulfilling careers. Here are the list of our programs, along with the length of time it takes to complete the coursework:

Computer Technology Program

Cosmetology Program

Exercise and Wellness Programs

  • Career: Personal Trainer; Length of time: 18 months
  • Career: Massage Therapist; Length of time: 9 months

Healthcare Programs

Technical Trade Programs

For all of these career opportunities, you can find a new career that you love in a year and a half or less time. Even if more than a year seems long to you, think of it this way:

  • This time is spent learning something new, rather than wasting time applying for jobs you will not get
  • These classes involve hands-on learning, making you job-ready, but also making the time pass much more quickly than traditional schooling
  • Our students and graduates have access to our career services department, who help you find jobs and connect you with great employers
  • Students also have access to our financial aid services, making the path to a new career more affordable than ever
  • This is an investment of time and money for a short amount of time – find the right program, and you will have a career that rewards you for years to come with valuable, happy employment

Earning a certificate or Associate’s degree from an accredited college like IntelliTec secures your future. Create a career that you and your family can be proud, can learn from, and that can continually give you job security.

Taking the Next Step: Landing a Great Career

Now that you have thought about a job that aligns your interests with a sustainable career path, you can move forward to making this dream a reality.

By partnering with IntelliTec College, you can not only achieve the certificate or associate degree you want, but you can also have people along the way who encourage and support you. With a friendly staff, accessible instructors , financial aid representatives who want to help you, a career services department who connects you with employers, and several convenient locations, IntelliTec gives you every resource you need to make this next step.

We understand that finding a new career can be scary, yet thrilling. Putting your life on hold to make this bold step can feel overwhelming. That’s why we are here to motivate you, make the program as short as possible, and get you out into the working world fast.

If you are interested in learning more about our programs, click here to see each one. Find out what you will learn in each area and what jobs can become available to you. There is no better time than right now to start on your new career journey.