We all have more than one interest - no matter whether in our private lives or at work. Having experience in different industries or developing two careers at the same time isn’t as uncommon as it used to be. Long gone are the days when people kept the very same job for their entire career. While it is quite common for lawyers and project managers to work across various industries, we all should experience some change throughout our working lives.
Whether you switch careers or juggle two at the same time, there is much to be gained here for your personal development.
Here are a few things to consider when planning your career(s).
Widening your professional perspective
After working in the same industry for many years, your view can become quite narrow - or even claustrophobic. Working with the same people, on the same projects, in the same sector, and dealing with the same issues day in and day out for years can be tiresome and monotonous.
To broaden your horizons, try talking to people from other fields, getting advice from those in other careers - or who are at different levels of their careers - to get some insight into different industries. By doing this, you’ll likely change your perspective on your current problems you’re facing in the office. Everyone deals with the same issues in the workplace, and discovering what else is out there could either make you feel better about your job, or encourage a change of scene. Either way, change is good!
Getting a proper education and obtaining relevant degrees will always remain crucial. However, many companies will value your actual work experiences higher. Especially when you are still at an early stage of your career, it is advisable to gain as many experiences as possible. After all, not everybody knows right from the get-go what career path they want to embark on.
Testing a few different career options, no matter if part-time job or internship, you will be able to refine your personal preferences. As every job requires a slightly different set of skills, you will discover where your strengths lie, enabling you to make smarter career choices further down the road.
Gaining extra income
Everyone wants a little bit of extra income! If you’re standing on a lower step of the career ladder, you might want to consider doing some freelance work on the side - both for financial purposes, but also to explore your professional options. Do you have some skills that your full-time job isn’t making use of? Do you want to further develop your programming knowledge to jump up the ladder? Part-time freelancing will get you all that and more.
Starting a freelance career on the side doesn’t have to be complicated. Remember that you are your own boss and can pick your battles strategically. Seek out projects that are manageable, profitable, and interesting to you - and that also won’t interfere with your productivity at your full-time job.
Building a network
Step out of your industry and you will discover a new world filled with different people. Networking is hugely important in many careers - even if you don’t have a client-facing or sales role, it never hurts to know more people in similar or different industries to expand your understanding of the world.
Beyond making connections, upping your networking skills can open your life up to a whole new set of career opportunities and partnership possibilities. There are only benefits to gaining a new network and engaging with people that might have a different approach to problem-solving.