Are you stuck in your current job and you desire to make a career change? Do you feel dissatisfied with your present path and seek to move into another career with much more financial income or self-fulfilling factors? Then this article is for you.
First thing first is for you to realize that people change their career every day and there is absolutely nothing wrong with you in doing same if you have a genuine reason or cause for it. Secondly, people change their career for different reasons and it’s not compulsory that the reason why you may want to change yours is the same with others as you have different interests. However, there are some general factors that must be put into consideration before finalizing the decision of a complete change in career.
3 Things to Consider Before Changing a Career
Before you make a final decision as regards changing your career, it is important to take time to evaluate your present situation, explore various career options and choose a career that will be more satisfying for you considering many variables. Specifically, however, these are the three things you should consider before you change your career.
1. The Skills
The first thing you must consider before switching from one career to a totally different path is the skill. You must be able to ask yourself some basic questions such as;
If you are able to answer these fundamental questions, tendencies are that the complexities about the switching process would become simpler. For example, An Accounting Professional who intends to switch to a totally different career path like Programming or Web Development would need to list out the common skills needed in web development first, list out the major skills and selling point also. In addition, he or she would also need to list out his or her current skills in order to know if they have acquired any of the needed skills at any point in time in the past or they have none at all. Knowing this helps, simplify the complexities involved in processing the career mobility.
2. Your abilities/opportunities to acquire new skills or take up new certification
After due consideration of your present skills in comparison with the needed ones, if you do not possess them, you may need to ask yourself if you have the ability to acquire them. Still using the example of the Accounting Professional who intends to switch to a career in Web Development, he may need to consider if he has flair for the required skills or simply the ability to learn HTML codes. Truth is, most individuals that are not tech-savvy may not really have the interest to sit down to learn the skills needed in that area and ultimately succeed in that career path. So deciding any random career is not the primary thing, but first looking at the career path that you are truly interested in and ready to learn the skills necessary to succeed in it.
3. Alternative careers paths
Once you have determined the skills that you have, and areas that you are savvy about or would easily cope in learning the skills, the next step is to make out a list of alternative career paths. This could be similar career fields that can serve as substitutes or totally different paths that you think match your skills or you have the ability to learn the skills necessary to thrive in them.
12 Trending Things You Can Do Now
While, it is true that every profession and career path is unique and has its own role to play in the society, it’s however important to also state that there are some prevalent professions that are so much in demand now in Kenya, that could serve as perfect alternatives for individuals looking forward to changing their career. The List is numerous and varies from industry to industries. However, 12 of these numerous career fields are mentioned in this list. Thus, the 12 trending careers in Kenya which could also serve as alternatives for individuals looking towards changing their careers are as follow below;
1. Computer Science
When we say computer science, we mean the aspects relating to “programming, web development and mobile development” mainly. Although there are other aspects of computer science that are important, the three stated ones above have however become prevalent and in high demand in Kenya today. No surprise that this career is hot. Recently, it seems that being a tech-geek is one of the best careers out there. Specifically, there have been numerous job vacancies by various companies for job-seekers in these areas. A career in programming and similar areas thus offer lots of opportunities to the job-holders and job-seekers.
Basically, most programmers maintain, audit and improve organizational support systems by working on the internal operations of computers. The role also covers writing diagnostic programs and designing and writing codes for operating systems and software to ensure efficiency. When required, they make recommendations for future developments. Depending on the type of organization, developers can become either systems or applications specialists. Job titles and descriptions are also not standardized. Some may be called systems programmers, engineers, or web developers. Alternatively, the programming language they use may become part of their job title, such as Java or PHP developer. The work of a systems developer can also form part of a software engineer or multimedia programmer’s role. In addition, depending on the firm, a system’s developer may have a more defined role and work within a group of Tech-specialists, which can include systems analysts and systems designers, or they may work solely on testing systems.
It’s a great career path for individuals considering a change in career to go in, as tech is simply the future.
2. Digital Marketing
The demand for Digital Marketers in Kenya has also increased drastically in recent times as most businesses now have online presence. As the world is becoming more and more digitized in every aspect, digital marketing has also grown to become a booming profession to pursue a career in. As seen in recent times, the digital economy is growing faster than the traditional economy which will result in skills gap for so many job vacancies as time progresses. Also, you would probably have heard the hype in digital marketing skills and that they are in serious demand and the digital skills gap is set to widen as the job market keeps booming. This is quite true. The rise of different choices of career in digital marketing is signaling this boom. If you are looking to break into the digital marketing industry, there’s no better time than now. There are various aspects of digital marketing such as Social Media Marketing, Search Engine Optimization (SEO), Email Marketing, and a host of other areas.
3. Accounting / Finance
Due to the broad range and large volume of business transactions in recent times, most organizations and individuals hire several types of financial experts, ranging from financial analysts or managers to business or personal accountants. Since, this large volume of transactions is expected to continue as time goes on, pursuing a career path in this area has become high in demand and prevalent in Kenya.
If you are good with numbers, you could find a rewarding career path in the financial services industry. In reality, pursuing a career in the industry can be both challenging and lucrative. It offers its practitioners a wide range of career paths to choose from ranging from investment banking and management, securities sales and trading, various aspects of research, financial analysis, auditing, taxation and a host of others. Whether an individual opts for corporate or government life, an established firm or self-employment, the career offers both tangible and intangible benefits. The finance industry also offer dedicated entrepreneurs the chance to expand their employment horizons. With all of these, it’s thus considered as one of the careers in Kenya with the highest demand.
4. Data Science
Data science seems to be the IT job of the moment. So many people saying positive things about it and making plans to take one course or the other to acquire a skill in it. Usually, when something sounds too good to be true, sometimes it probably is true. The demand for data science is taking the world by storm, and companies, large and small are clamoring to find employees who can understand and synthesize data, and then communicate these findings in a way that proves beneficial to the company. With the innumerable amounts of data generated in the technology era, data scientists have become an increasingly needed vocation.
While many top companies have started to hire data scientists of their own, others have not. Due to the novelty of the profession, many individuals and companies alike, are not entirely aware of the many career possibilities that come with being a data scientist. Those in the field can look forward to a promising career and excellent compensation. Persons interested in pursuing a career in this line of work should, however, be prepared to go the extra mile in terms of the education and skills needed. It is a career of the future worth serving as a perfect alternative for.
5. Nursing Degree
Nursing as a profession in the medical field is highly respected with great demand for highly skilled nurses around the globe today. Kenya as a nation do not take exemption to this. If you are considering an exciting, growing and rewarding field, you should probably be considering Nursing. There are many awesome reasons to pursue a career in nursing ranging from it being very rewarding, both financially and emotionally. It also helps you to make a difference in people’s lives and bringing them hope and joy. This is not something that you can achieve in just about any career. This becomes particularly interesting for those changing their career due to lack of satisfaction or self-fulfillment.
Basically, Nurses plan and provide medical and nursing care to patients in the hospital, at home or in other settings who are suffering from both chronic and acute physical or mental ill health. But the jobs require not only treating patients who are sick and injured, but also offering advice and emotional support to patients and their families, taking care of paperwork, helping doctors diagnose patients and providing advice and follow-up care. It has always been relevant to humanity and will keep being relevant, especially for developing nations like Kenya. Thus, as long as there are still people sick or are in need of care, there will always be need of nurses which ultimately make the profession almost impossible for redundancy.
6. Graphics Design and User Interface Design
Graphic designers simply create visual communications seen every day, every minute, across the globe. They develop entertainment, advertising, news and features in all forms, including print publications and digital and broadcast media such as game machines, television, web browsers, social platforms and portable devices. As long as you keep seeing all that is mentioned above, it means there will be a continual need and demand for the designers’ every day. This makes the job-holders pursuing a career path here to always remain relevant. In addition, graphic designers can also decide to work for others or work for themselves – thus a very flexible career. A career here also gives the choice of working in advertising, publishing, public relations, media, industrial design, and a range of various other industries.
On the other hand, User Interface Design has to do with the process of designing the user interfaces for machines and software, such as computers, home appliances, mobile devices, and other electronic devices, with the focus on maximizing usability and the user experience. You would probably have heard a lot about the profession also. It has become a hot topic today, both on and off the tech scene, in startups, agencies and at large corporations alike. It keeps increasing in demand on a daily basis and is worth serving as an alternative for individuals looking at changing their career.
7. Medical Degrees (Physician, Surgeon, Ophthalmologists, Dentists, Med. Lab, and etc.)
There are a lot of reasons why people should choose to pursue a career in one of the Medical fields, ranging from personal calling to calculated financial gain. People get sick every day and that’s enough reasons to keep you on your job perpetually. The field is quiet vast and there are many areas in which individuals can decide to pursue a career in. Only that a profession in this field would require extensive years of education. But it’s ultimately worth the wait.
However, there have been some changes in the educational practices. For example, there are many changes that are taking place in the structure of surgical training today. There are now programs that take students as interns and train them in cardiac surgery for five years. Plastic Surgery training consists of three years of General Surgery and three years of Plastic Surgery. Students can now match into Vascular Surgery programs. This means that you can finish your training in less time and qualify to practice. These residents will not receive certification in general surgery however but they will be certified to practice in their specialty. Most of these academic qualifications are however obtainable by taking the courses abroad. While you can then come back to practice in Kenya.
8. Fitness Trainer
There are hundreds of different reasons why people may decide to pursue a career as a fitness trainer. While some are driven by a desire to help others change the way they live, others have been inspired by a life experience that instilled the value of fitness in them. Others also have seen the need for fitness in others and have gotten an idea of business simply from it. Whichever the case may be, fitness training has lots of potentials now in Kenya.
If you are thinking about starting a career in the fitness industry, you are definitely heading towards the right direction. With the increase in the obesity level of individuals and the need for thinness by many Kenyans all in the name of modelling or being ‘sexy’, you are sure going to make a cool business out of it. Also, unlike many other industries in Kenya with high job insecurity, personal trainers are not at risk of losing their jobs. Once you establish your fitness business, you have flexibility in creating your own work schedule. And even involve in multiple jobs.
9. Sales / Marketing
The sales guru, Brian Tracy describes sales as the "ultimate default career." By that, he means that many people get into sales because they can't find any other job that pays them what they need. For many, when there is no other choice job to do or career path to follow, they settle for sales. However, this perspective is beginning to change recently.
A career in sales can often be quite rewarding for those who wish to pursue it. So also is a career in marketing. Marketing is the general aspect concerned with identifying consumer demand relative to a product or service and developing ways in which consumers can purchase these in the optimum amounts to make your company profitable. Many companies will need a salesperson, a marketer or a business developer to help them maintain a healthy income and increase profit, in a wide range of different industries. This is because sales are incredibly important to any company from software companies to financial service firms.
Thus, the sales/marketing professionals are needed to motivate staff and help companies reach their revenue goals. They have to be outstanding at customer relations and place employees in the best position to close deals. This ultimately makes them indispensable in the nearest future.
It also important to state that you are almost certain to make more money in sales than in a technical or an administrative job. Companies need to make sales to survive, and usually reward successful sales people highly, to ensure that they stay in the job. And it’s fair: the better the sales person, the more he or she will earn. For many, this is often the main reason why a sales career is chosen initially.
10. Estate Management
Basically, real estate management has to do with the administration, operation, marketing, maintenance, and financial oversight of real property in order to achieve the objectives of the property’s owner. Real estate management incorporates both real property management and asset management. It’s a very lucrative career path as landed property would remain being traded or rented to time immemorial.
However, a career in real estate management isn’t that easy. Today’s real estate manager is much more than someone who maintains the building and collects the rent. But many estate managers typically make a healthy salary for their time and commitment, and many also enjoy their line of work. It is an ideal career choice for those who want to have their skills valued and their contributions recognized while having a meaningful impact on others and the world around them.
11. Agricultural Science
When we think about a career in agriculture, most people imagine a farmer working in the field, with a cutlass or riding a tractor. In today’s age of technology and business however, it’s not always like that. Agricultural career options go well beyond farming and ranching. If you love the idea of working with crops, animals and resources that contribute to the worldwide food supply, pursuing a career in agriculture could provide you with a rewarding and fulfilling future.
Agriculture is a big industry, and most of the careers are related to science and business. The study of agriculture is called agricultural science or agricultural technology. The field combines the natural and social sciences, along with economics, engineering and management of biological systems to practice, develop and understand the fields of agriculture and forestry. As long as food remains necessary, if you pursue a career in agriculture you would never become redundant. Especially when you are technologically inclined. Various individuals pursuing a career in Agriculture end up as so many things ranging from Agricultural Economist, Agricultural Engineer, Agronomist, Animal Nutritionist, Animal Physiologist, Aqua-culturist and etc.
The architecture field plays a vital role in the daily lives, of people all over the world which makes it a career with impact. Though the industry is competitive and architects require a lot of studies and internships to start working, architecture is a field that pays off in the long term. It is one with great career potentials and benefits.
Making the decision to pursue architecture is not easy. Often, most individuals may think that they have to be particularly talented at drawing, or being extremely good in math to pursue a career in the field. Many however end up overwhelmed by the mountainous tasks ahead. Nonetheless, working in architecture gives you the opportunity to shape the world we live in by creating and designing spaces, buildings and cities. This comes along with a huge financial income also. And since people will keep building houses or demolishing the ones they had before to build another one, architecture as a field will keep being relevant.
5 Things to Expect when Changing a Career
Having seen the list of the trending career fields in Kenya that are high in demand and hot at the moment, the next step is to know the things to expect, as change even in its littlest form can bring about discomfort. The five things to expect when switching to another career are thus as follows;
1. Fear and Anxiety
Doing anything for the first time has a way of instilling anxiety and fear in one. You begin to think of the possibility of it not working out and all. You might develop the fear of failure, fear of unacceptance, fear of dissatisfaction, fear of the unknown and etc. However, you must recognize that every new and novel idea or pursuit will always come with its own challenge – fear and anxiety being one of the results of going into a new career.
Leaving what you have been used to has a kind of guilt that it leaves in you. Leaving your previous career which was probably your first love, which you probably had a first degree in, which everyone around you probably has been used to already has the guilt it leaves. It makes you have this guilt inside and at some points, you may even feel like going back and just remaining there even if you are stuck in it.
However, you must remember that it’s only normal for this to happen. With time and consistency in the new field, all the fears would have to give way.
3. Cultural Shock
A new career may also bring about cultural shock. Inability to cope with the ways in which things are done in the new profession and all. For example, one who has been in any of the engineering fields all these while and is coming into a finance or accountancy field would probably have a lot of issues adjusting to the corporate wears and all. Use of the frequent financial terms can also pose a threat at the beginning. But with time all of these are dissolves.
4. Possible Financial Break Down
This may be frequent for individuals who are changing their career due to dissatisfaction or no fulfillment from the previous one. While self-fulfillment is very important to consider, it’s however important to state that the new fulfilling career may not come with enough financial income as the previous one. In such cases, before switching your career to a less paying field, you might need to consider your financial savings first or your ability to cope with little income.
5. Difficulty of the New Task
While jumping into a new career may be very exciting at first, it’s important to also note that it can also be quite difficult with the same degree of excitement it once had. For example, one switching from an administratively inclined career path to one that is very technical (mentally or physically), may need to be ready to put in more efforts, otherwise he or she might end up encountering lots of difficulties.
How to Go about a Career Change: The Two-Way Approach
Once you have decided the new path that you intend to trod, the next logical thing for you to do is to determine the approach to use. The two possible approaches are as follow below;
1. Getting the Needed Skills/Education/Certification
Once you decide to go into a new career, you don’t just launch your net to the river like an average fisherman – you need to plan, be strategic. A career change will have a long-term effect on your life, it’s thus wise you prepare for the new career with the necessary tools needed to excel or at least thrive minimally in that new field. Primary of this are;
You are not the first person in that proposed new field. People were there before you ever thought of switching. People have also thought of switching there and carried it out successfully before you could ever conceive the idea of moving. So there is absolutely no need rushing as if an already-made job already awaits you. There is actually no juicy job anywhere naturally - your skill attracts you to them. So if you do not do one or more of these three things listed above before you move, tendencies are that you would just be welcomed into the new field with a handshake as the newest individual to be perpetually unemployed. Get a skill first!
2. Taking up an actual job to learn the Profession/Networking
In addition to the first point or in absence of it, you also may need to take up an actual job in the proposed new field. In Kenya today, most jobs do not require you to have an academic background in a specific discipline before you can apply. You can take advantage of this for the few which require no actual core skills to occupy. This could be in form of voluntary jobs in the proposed field or undergoing an internship program. You could climb the ladder of the career and soon become an experienced individual in that field too. That way you would have ended up switching gently without so much risks or fear.
You can also take up the opportunity to network with individuals in that desired new field who can teach, mentor or help you in one way or another to achieve this your new dream of yours.
While career change may be important at some phases in one’s life, it’s however important to state that some people don’t really need a career change. You shouldn’t want to change because of just financial opportunities alone. What if you don’t have the skills or abilities to meet the requirement of that field? A career change should be done with the right motive in mind, otherwise regrets might just be waiting for you at the other end. However, financial income is usually one of the good reasons you may need to change a career, but it should ultimately be for the greater good, not just one factor - evaluate yourself well before you decide. A great career awaits you today! Do well to share your thoughts in the comment box below.