Whether you’re just starting out or looking for a career change, breaking into a new field can be challenging. So, how can you get your foot in the door when most employers want to hire people who already have some experience? The following tips can help you gain the skills you need to begin a new career.
1. Get the inside scoop through networking.
Attending professional networking events and making an effort to get to know people in your desired field is invaluable. It’s particularly beneficial to have professional contacts who can attest to your intelligence, character, and ambition when your actual on-the-job experience is minimal.
Try to get involved in a professional or industry organization that offers regular meetings with guest speakers so you can learn about the latest trends and developments in the field. And be sure you make the most of mingle time at these events. During these informal networking sessions you’ll have the opportunity to learn about the industry first-hand from those in the know. You’ll also have a good chance of hearing about job openings in the field before they’re posted elsewhere.
2. Test drive the job through temporary assignments.
If you’d like to find out a little more about a potential career while gaining hands-on experience at the same time, accepting a temporary assignment from a staffing agency is a great idea. The right staffing agency can find you a job in the field you’re most interested in joining. This will allow you to learn the ropes and build your resume while determining if the career is right for you.
Not only does working as a temporary associate allow you to preview potential careers and gain much-needed experience, it also opens the door to full-time employment. In fact, many Express temporary associates go on to accept permanent positions at companies they are placed with.
3. Help a good cause and gain experience along the way.
Doing volunteer work is an excellent way to help your community while increasing your job skills. If you’re new to the workforce or interested in changing careers, consider volunteering your time to pick up the skills you need.
Non-profit organizations are always in need of volunteers to help them with a range of tasks. To gain experience in your field of interest, call around to local charities and ask them if they could use assistance in those areas. Chances are, you’ll find several places that are more than happy to let you help their cause while boosting your resume.
Whether you’re searching for your first job out of school or ready for a change of pace in a new line of work, having the right experience will help you break into your new career. Networking, working temporary assignments, and volunteering are all excellent ways to build your expertise and make yourself an in-demand employee.