Switchup: Key Tips for Changing Careers

If you work a job that you don’t enjoy and you’re yearning to switch careers to do something you love, you may be pleasantly surprised to find that a transition is easier now than ever before. In fact, it’s possible to reskill, apply for roles, or even found a business of your own, all online. Here are a few tips from Talking Manuals to get you started.


Before you can begin the process of switching careers, it’s important to first be clear about what you want to do, how to go about doing it, and whether it’s wise to do so. Some people find that, by chasing their passion (or monetizing it), they kill their enjoyment of it. This is often the case with more artistic pursuits, especially as they tend to provide less compensation.

Ideally, your new career helps you to achieve personal and professional fulfillment, helping to bring stability to your life. Experts identify six qualities that all satisfying jobs have in common:

  • Work that is engaging

  • Work that benefits others

  • Work that you’re good at

  • Flexibility over how and where you work

  • A lack of major negatives

  • Opportunity for meaningful collaboration

Try to think deeply about your relationship with the subject in question and forecast whether it will be able to provide you with these benefits and how you might successfully transition into a paid role. There are plenty of online guides to help you strategize or compartmentalize the process.


If you’re aiming to change your role entirely, there is a high chance that you’ll need to reskill and acquire new qualifications. Some industries care about the credentials

themselves (law, accountancy), and some are more concerned with what the credentials represent (programming, marketing) and will require you to show results or prove your practical skills before gaining entry. Fortunately, there are all manner of educational programs available to access online, and thanks to online learning, it’s possible to fit your studies around work or family responsibilities. This also helps to cut down on time and money spent on the commute.

Portfolio Building:

Once you possess the requisite skills, it’s time to assemble the assets that will maximize your employability. These will vary depending on your industry - for graphic designers, you will need examples of work (even if these are speculative), for accountants, you will need proof of accounting certifications, and for coders, you will need proof of ability (which could be a project that showcases your expertise). Make sure you assemble these assets alongside your resume and draw upon your experience to write a detailed cover letter that alludes to examples of proven ability.


Finding roles may seem straightforward enough, but there is an art to the process. Some job areas are in need of staff, and it will be easy enough to find positions through job sites. Others (such as marketing or creative roles) are in high demand, and you may need to adopt a more nuanced approach. This could mean networking with key industry figures, reaching out to companies directly, impressing them with gestures, or even turning up in person to hand in your application.

Founding a Business:

You might decide that it’s employment itself that you take issue with. In this case, it’s perfectly viable to found a business of your own and earn independently. Before you commit any funds to a self-owned business, however, it’s important that you prepare. This includes writing a business plan that details your company, outlines a selling strategy, delineates how the company will be structured and includes any financial needs and projections. For help with this, check out this ZenBusiness guide on how to start a company.

When it comes to financing a small business, there are a number of options to consider. One option is to take out a loan from a financial institution. However, in order to qualify for a loan, you will need to have a strong credit score (anything over 740 is considered excellent).

If you want to switch careers, it’s crucial to remember that change is possible with the right attitude and some prior research. Take the time to review your options, improve your employability (or plan to start your own business), then strike when the moment’s right.

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