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EMPLOYMENT
How can I improve
my chances of a
by JERALIE PALLOT
MANAGING DIRECTOR,
Rowlands Recruitment
new career?
Whether you are embarking on a new career or keen to The internet is an incredibly useful tool to use at this point.
consider a change in career direction, the starting point is Vast amounts of information on the various careers
the same. Research and preparation are vital to your available can be found and a good starting point for careers
success and a realistic, flexible approach ensures you are in finance would be the sites www.investopaedia.com or
less likely to become disillusioned with the process or www.wikipedia.org. These sites will give you the basics
disappointed with the outcome. So, what are you – an e.g. what is a hedge fund? What is a trust? You can then
idealist or a realist when it comes to your career planning? build on this knowledge by looking at company websites.
Some of the local organisations have excellent websites that
It would be useful to ask yourself a few simple explain the responsibilities of their internal roles.
questions before you set out:
Now that you have confirmed which areas would best suit
• Do you know why you want to change?
you it is time to go to work! Finding a new position is a
• Are your reasons more positive (e.g. you have an
job in itself and would require you to be pro-active. This is
ambition) than negative (you’re unhappy where you are)?
where the services of a good Recruitment Consultant will
• Have you explored alternative options rather than a
help immensely. Recruitment companies have access to
complete career change (for example, flexible working or
taking a different job in the same company or the same job in
hundreds of positions from many different companies and
a more suitable environment)?
should know which ones would consider an applicant with
• Are your (transferable) skills a good match for the new
your sort of background, who is keen to develop into the
career?
position. By using a Consultant you are not relying totally
• Is the job market in your chosen sector buoyant? on your CV as, having interviewed you, the Consultant
• On the financial side, are you prepared for a drop in will speak to the prospective employer, bringing your skills
salary if that’s what it takes?
and background to life. They can describe you enthusiasm
• If your career change involves re-training, do you have
for this new career and highlight transferable skills and
the time and financial support for it?
experience.
If your responses are Yes more than No, it is clear that you
Once an interview has been set up with an interested
have given your move a great deal of thought. If your
finance company, either through your Consultant or
responses are No more than Yes, it does not mean you are
through a direct application it is over to you to convince
acting on a whim; you just need to give more thought to
the prospective employer that you are committed to make
your motives and resources.
the most of the opportunity. Consider your presentation
and interview technique and ask the question …’Would
Once you have established that you are on the right track,
you employ you?’ No employer is going to offer a
fully research the area of business you are most interested
position, requiring a steep learning curve, to a person who
in. Try to be fairly specific about this – wanting a career in
does not appear to have the drive, energy or commitment
finance is not a convincing argument for a prospective
to see it through.
employer. Talk to contacts, friends, ex colleagues who
might have moved into a particular sector. Find out what
If you have realistic expectations with regards to the role
they like most about their role, what parts of their job they
and salary and approach suitable opportunities with an
find particularly enjoyable or particularly tedious. Try and
honest, keen, positive attitude there is every chance that a
ascertain the focus of the role by asking questions about
prospective employer will seriously consider your
how their day is made up. If, for example, you need
application. Whilst ability is clearly important any
people contact or client liaison to gain true job satisfaction
recruiter will tell you that, over time, true success in a
then ask for an idea of how much of their day or what
position comes down to the attitude of the individual.
percentage of their week is spent communicating with
Your efforts will be rewarded and what a great result –
internal and external clients.
the career you really wanted!
20/20 forty
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