According to technology entrepreneur and author Daniel Gulati, the biggest regrets of professionals he interviewed were taking a job for the money and staying in dissatisfying careers. Gulati also discovered that those who eventually quit their jobs to pursue their passions wish they had done so sooner. Number three on the regret list was wishing they had the confidence to start their own business.
Whether you’re looking to quit your job to follow your passions or find them, there’s no better time than the present. You have more resources at your disposal and well within reach than ever before with online courses and the ability to connect with just about anyone. But that doesn’t mean the path to a passionate career is a clear one. Not sure where to start? Here are five ways to navigate your path to career success:
Learn on Your Own
Leave your qualms about education at the door. You may need extra training or certification, but that doesn’t mean you need to head back to school for a costly MBA. Reverse engineer your dream career by looking at the requirements of open jobs and the resumes of professionals who hold those jobs. Make a list of the skills you need and match them with seminars, such as the 200 open-enrollment courses at Moody’s Analytics. Check out vocational schools, online business classes like SkillShare and continuing adult education courses at your local university.
According to a study by Jobvite, 73 percent of job recruiters plan to invest in social, 63 percent in referrals and 51 percent in mobile recruiting in 2015. Getting connected through LinkedIn, networking events and social media commands attention. Cast a wide net in your efforts to get and stay connected with the right people.
It’s not enough just to meet someone in your field. Keep your focus on building genuine relationships with people by offering advice and lending a hand. The more value and authenticity you can bring to the table, the more memorable you’ll become. As you get to know your network, ask for advice on how they built up their career and what skills and experience you need to put your new career on the fast track.
Test the Market
Got an idea for a hot new product? Testing the market can be costly and time consuming for a budding entrepreneur. Streamline the process by participating in online forums, blog comments and social media groups with your target audience. For example, if your product caters to technology entrepreneurs in their 30s, go directly to the social media platforms and groups that attract them. Solicit feedback and work on notes, a design or prototype.
Next, launch a Kickstarter or Indiegogo campaign to raise funds while testing your idea. If no one makes much of a contribution to get your product up and running, you’ll know it’s not the right idea. Once you find the right product, you’ll have the funds in place through your funding campaign to get started.
It’s entirely possible to raise hundreds of thousands of dollars for an unusual, off the wall idea. For example, sock subscription company Foot Cardigan raised $250,000 on “Shark Tank.” Perhaps more impressive, the company started getting orders every 10 seconds after the company’s four founders appeared on the show. Foot Cardigan brands itself as a fun and funky business with quirky copy, a less-than-serious attitude and a collection of strange and colorful socks.
Let CorpNet help you turn your passion into profit. We can help you start a business today!
Susan Finch is a freelance writer with a passion for travel and helping small businesses find their online voice through content marketing, blogging and beyond. She is an eclectic writer with more than 10 years of experience contributing to guidebooks, magazines, iPhone apps, online publications and more. Susan can be found at BySusanFinch.com.