Around the Web: Changing Industries

The grass may be greener in another field; these online resources can help you over the fence.

The grass may be greener in another field; these online resources can help you over the fence.

No question, making the transition from one industry to another is more daunting than the already stressful process of finding a new job. Is it worth the time, effort and risk? That can depend on the health of the industry you’re in, the one you’re interested in and which is closer to the kind of work you’d be doing if you really had your druthers. More importantly, if you’ve already made the decision to switch, how can you do it successfully?

Here are some resources from the Web to help make your career transition a smooth one.

  • From aircraft mechanics to zookeepers, The Department of Labor’s Occupational Outlook Handbook is a comprehensive resource on almost any job you can think of, including the nature of each position, required training, career outlook and estimated salary.
  • OK, so getting your first AARP card in the mail on your 50th birthday was kind of a shock, and it’s odd to get career advice from a group dedicated to “retired persons.” Still, AARP’s National Employer Team can help, with a network created to help mature workers connect to companies that value their experience, talent, and abilities. Its Web site features information and listings from companies that have made a strong commitment to hiring experienced, executive professionals.
  • Career coaches can reality-check your plans, pull out those repressed professional ambitions and encourage you to power over those last few hurdles to your goal. When considering a career coach, check to see that they’re accredited with one of the major counseling organizations (such as the CACREP or NBCC), and that they have experience with career changes.
  • Remember the aptitude test you took in high school that said you should be a park ranger? It was probably wrong, but personality assessments can help you put a name to those vague evaluations you’ve put on your own traits and maybe help you hone in on the job or career move that would close the existential gap you’ve been meaning to fill. Take the Myer-Briggs Type Indicator Assessment at
  • It might have been a while since you’ve heard anything but donation requests from your alma mater. Nevertheless, many schools offer career services for alumni that extend far beyond the first-job search they do for students. In addition to being able to meet with a career counselor, access your alumni network and view job listings provided by your school, you should also enquire about reciprocity programs that could give you access to the career-services offices of colleges and universities in your local area or that are particularly strong in your professional arena.
    NYU Law is one example:

Jordan Breindel|Jordan Breindel is a freelance journalist.