Financing Your Career Change
CBN.com Do you want to make a career change, but feel trapped by your financial situation? Many people are certain they can't afford to transition into a new job or career, but there are do-able strategies that can make it financially feasible.
Financial Tips for Career Changes
1. Research the financial side of your career target. Do your homework to find out typical salaries or income levels for your job target in your geographic area. Use online tools such as those found at salary.com and careerinfonet.org. Also, conduct informational interviews with people in your chosen field to gather additional "live" information about salary ranges for this type of work. If you are considering an occupation that includes self-employment (such as being a therapist, real estate agent or medical transcriptionist), you will want to make sure that you understand the business side of what it takes to earn a living in this field before starting an education or training program.
2. Begin saving now. A career transition may include additional training or education and/or a period of time in which you will have reduced earnings as you get started. Creating an emergency fund of six to 12 months of expenses will help relieve your stress in making a transition that entails financial costs.
3. Reduce your spending and debt. Take a close look at your spending to see where you can make some cuts. If you really want to make a career change, focus on all the benefits of being in work that is a good fit for you. Keeping that picture in mind will reduce the pain of cutting out your $4 a day specialty coffee habit and bringing your own coffee from home. (These changes don't have to be permanent. Think of them as a means to helping you achieve what you really want to do with your life.)
You can find great tips and strategies for reigning in your spending, increasing your savings and reducing dept at www.debtproofliving.com, www.daveramsey.com and www.crown.org.
4. Start your new job part-time. A great way to "reality test" your new career is to begin it part-time while you're still earning income elsewhere. It is much less stressful to try something new when you are not dependent on it for paying all your bills. Managing your time will be important to make sure your current job doesn't get short-changed, and your sleep and health doesn't suffer. Write out a weekly time management plan to see what might work for spending at least a few hours a week getting your new job launched.
5. Learn how to market your new business. Many people have a self-employment idea that they are excited about doing. They tend to focus, however, on the enjoyment of doing the work itself and overlook or minimize the necessity of marketing their business. Without good marketing, the business will fail financially. To make it as an entrepreneur, you need to become a student of marketing (even if that isn't your "bent" or natural preference). You can learn to market yourself and your business in a way that fits your personality! Google "learn how to market your business" to explore options for becoming saavy about marketing strategies that fit you and your business. You can also find self-employment marketing help through community education courses and the Small Business Association.
You Can Do It!
While getting your finances in order (and learning how to be a business person if you want to be self-employed) aren't exactly "fun" things to do, they are important steps in reinventing your life and will eventually bring you great enjoyment. You can start small in making changes; the important thing is to start! Becoming financially healthy will also have many positive ripple effects in the rest of your life. Living debt-free with a savings cushion and financial spending plan are important elements in freeing yourself to become the person God created you to be and do the things He designed you to do.
© Article copyright by Kevin and Kay Marie Brennfleck, www.ChristianCareerCenter.com. All rights reserved. The above information is intended for personal use only. No commercial use of this information is authorized without written permission.
Kevin Brennfleck and Kay Marie Brennfleck, National Certified Career Counselors, are the authors of Live Your Calling: A Practical Guide to Finding and Fulfilling Your Mission in Life. Their websites, www.ChristianCareerCenter.com, www.ChurchJobsOnline.com, and www.ChristianJobFair.com,feature hundreds of job listings from churches, ministries, and Christian employers; a resume bank; and many other career/job search resources and articles. They also offer career coaching and testing to help you discover work that fits your God-given design, as well as assistance with writing a powerful resume, interviewing effectively, finding job openings, and other aspects of a successful job search. You can schedule a free consultation session today!
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