There are a variety of factors to take into consideration when choosing the path you will take toward a new career. You will need to assess what you already possess in terms of skills, education, and experience that will apply to your new career. Next, you should consider what you need to break into the industry. If you have what it takes to get into the industry or are already there, consider what you will need to move to the position that you want. Knowing yourself, your finances, and the industry you've chosen inside and out is essential to career planning. Here are a few questions to ask yourself.
Do you need a degree, a certificate, or a skill set that you can obtain through a class to succeed in your new career?
If so, do you have the time and money to finance this education? Can you take out loans, take your classes online, or take some time off work to get this education?
Do you need to be certified? If so, a very specific career path has most likely been mapped out – and followed. Find out what others in your area have done, where they've gone to school, and where to register for the exam to pass your certification. This will save you a considerable amount of time as you research what you need to do.
Are you sure this career is what you want? Is the time and money invested in education and entry level positions worth it to you? Will the job pay enough money to finance the lifestyle you want to live? Are the day to day characteristics of your new career compatible with your temperament and values? Realistically assessing your interests and capabilities could save you years if you are honest and sure that you are choosing your new career for the right reasons.