After a weird 2020 when many of us worked from home, cut off from the office and our daily routine, it’s understandable that some are re-thinking their career options. 2021 feels like a fresh start.

In any year, it’s not unusual to see people suffering from the post-Australia-Day blues. That first full month back at work can be tough, even more so if you’re still effectively a prisoner in your own home and only edging back into office life one or two days a week.

My personal experience this year is a little 50/50 on whether it’s career change time. Some of our contacts are feeling a little anxious about shifting and moving on, while others are seeing plenty of opportunities out there as business looks to get back to normal service.

Whenever I’m asked whether now is a good time to move, my answer is generally ‘no more or less so than any other time’. If you are looking to move, here are a few tips on making sure you’re in the best position to find the role you want.

  1. Don’t cram your CV

Like many areas in life: less is more when it comes to your CV. Streamline your approach, and don’t cram it full of long-winded explanations of every job you’ve ever held.

My rule here is to highlight and elaborate on only the core skills and experience that help you make that next jump in your career. Writing ‘War and Peace’ in your CV won’t make you more employable, it’ll just bore the hell out of the person reading it. You’re much better off being succinct and to the point on your achievements, calling out those that are important and not padding your CV with superfluous dribble.Think about it this way: What would I want to highlight about myself to make me attractive to someone hiring for the role I want?

  1. Check your social media

 Here’s a free tip: Most potential employers will look at your public information, and that means your social media accounts. It’s not rocket science that what you put out there on social media will be reviewed and analysed by businesses looking to bring you in. It’s all part of a wider background check on you…shock, horror that recruiters and employers don’t just rely on your references alone!

Firstly, make sure your online presence is consistent. For example, if your CV says you were a General Manager, but your LinkedIn profile says Sales Executive, don’t be surprised if you don’t receive a call back.

Secondly, if you want to keep it personal, then make your personal social media accounts private. That way, any of your personal opinions and views can’t be used as a part of making a hiring decision. It also eliminates you having different stories on different platforms and contributes to that consistent message point I made earlier.

  1. Know what you want

This one sounds like basic common sense, but you would be surprised how many people want to switch careers without knowing what they want to switch to.

Idealism is awesome in many areas, but for your career, the reality is that you’ll most likely have to make compromises in what you want at a career level (unless you’re in the top 1%).

Knowing where you want to go is crucial to getting it right. Test it out with your current employers; if they can’t get you there, then you’ll know it’s time to find it somewhere else.

A good starting point is to get it down on paper. Create a list and share it with any recruiters you’re working with. It’ll help them find the right type of roles for you and put you in the game. It will also help sharpen your thinking so that you won’t just grab any role available. Often knowing what you don’t want is more valuable than knowing what you do.

Want to discuss your career options? DM me here or email me at steve@projectprofessionalservices.com.au.