The New Year has just begun and you know what that means, right? New goals… new diet… new exercise program…. new job?
If you’re unsatisfied in your current work situation, or even if you’re just wondering if there’s something better out there, pick up a copy of New Job, New You by Alexandra Levit. You may know Alexandra from her previous works They Don’t Teach Corporate in College or How’d You Score That Gig?
This time, Levit is tackling career change. New Job, New You is designed to help you discover what’s really driving your career choices, so you can channel those motivations into a more satisfying job and, ultimately, a more satisfying life.
The book gets to the heart of what makes people switch careers, using some of the more common reasons as a framework for the discussion. In Levit’s words, these are:
Family: When true work/life balance becomes a necessity
Independence: When you’ve been bitten by the entrepreneurial bug
Learning: When your bookish, curious side takes over
Money: When an increase in earning potential is on the horizon
Passion: When you yearn to do what you love
Setback: When one door closes, another one opens
Talent: When you’re too good at something not to give it a shot
If any of these strike a chord, New Job, New You could serve as the inspiration for your own career change in 2010 or beyond. But the book does more than help you identify why you may want to move in a new direction, it provides guidance on how that is specific to each section. Levit does a nice job of helping you think through options – listing steps to get your financial house in order before making the leap as an entrepreneur for example – so you can make informed choices as a result.
If – like me – you find that New Job, New You helps you identify what you want out of your career – or even if it leads you to search for greener pastures, you will find plenty of inspiration from others who came before. Since the moment when you take a deep breath and decide to start a new career can be terrifying (yet incredibly liberating), each section features interviews with others who have successfully transitioned from one job to another.
There’s also a forward by Stephen Covey (Hey Alexandra, how’d you score THAT gig?!) that rightly points out this is no longer the age of a hierarchical career model where organizations have all the control. We – as talented employees – have real choices in how, where, and when we work….sometimes we just need a little encouragement to make it happen. Consider this book your paperback “kick in the pants” to get moving.
Emily Bennington is the author of Effective Immediately: How to Fit In, Stand Out, and Move Up at Your First Real Job. She hosts a popular blog for career newbies at www.professionalstudio365.com and can be found on Twitter @EmilyBennington or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.