There are those healthcare professionals that had been mulling a career change for some time. Then the Covid-19 pandemic hit, leaving many in a state of limbo when it comes to their professional future. Does it make sense to pursue the career changes they had been thinking about prior to, and spurred on by, the pandemic? Should I stay put for the time being even if my current career is making me unhappy or is extremely stressful?
Here are 7 things to consider before making that career change while in a pandemic:
- Be thorough with your research
Use this time to data mine your networks. Set up calls with peers in other areas of healthcare, or outside of healthcare, to get a sense of skill are needed to succeed and if it’s a fit for you personally. It’s best to know where you are going to land before you jump.
- Do some soul searching
Honestly ask yourself what about your current career is no longer working for you and what is the exact reason you want change. Write these reasons down, walk away, and then come back to the list. Are they legitimate reasons to jump careers? If remedied in your current post, would you be happy enough to stay or are you hoping the “grass is greener on the other side”.
- List your skills
You should have a good sense of what your strongest skills or skill set entails. Whether you have proven these skills in your current career or want to start using untapped skills, you want to know exactly what you can bring to a new career path in medicine.
- See if volunteering is available
The best way to see if a new healthcare career will be a good fit is if you are able to give it a try. See if the place you would like to work at, or some where within the industry, has a volunteer or unpaid internship program. If you can swing the extra hours, spend some time getting to know the pros and cons of your potential path. More dramatic career changes will probably call for longer a longer volunteer stint.
- Remember that you’re still in a pandemic
Whether the pandemic caused you to consider a career change or not, you can’t ignore the fact that it is still happening and that no one can predict when it will end. This isn’t meant to discourage you, but to make sure that your next steps are thought out with this uncertainty in mind. If the path you want to take is dependent on the pandemic ending, then you probably shouldn’t make a move right away.
- Don’t forget to negotiate!
Yes, even in a pandemic you can still negotiate your compensation. You want to feel the best you can with your new start and leaving any doubts on the table can eventually eat at you. So, make sure you have put yourself in the best position possible.
Just because we’re in a pandemic doesn’t mean that you career gets put on hold. Through careful self-assessment and planning you can still make strides to trying new and better career paths. Just be patient, think things through, and act accordingly.