Career Change Education - Repurpose Your Transferable Job Skills

Dr. Purushothaman
December 3, 2013


You may be considering some sort of career change education if your present career path has been disrupted by the recession and current job displacements or downsizing. If you’ve been unemployed or underemployed in any given career field for at least six months or close to a year or more, you may be wondering if you should be building a different career or taking a different approach to leveraging your existing job experience.

In assessing your personal situation, and while researching career change ideas, you may have already come across the concept of using transferable job skills and experiences to adapt to an alternative career field. Many skills you’ve already gained are applicable and valuable assets that can be used strategically to gain entree in another career avenue.

To enhance your career prospects, while factoring your individual likes and dislikes in the mix, you may have already decided that it’s time to update your skills and widen your knowledge base in a specific area. Before determining any final career change education choices, I’d like to suggest you look into job-trend dynamics you might not have considered.

Corporations have shifted varying percentages of the workforce into part time and temporary positions to save costs on employee benefit packages. Outsourcing and independent contracting has replaced many of the traditional tenured and salaried positions in corporate America.

Outsourcing is a business option that many companies actually feel increases their competitive edge. 42 percent of companies that have used outsourcing services claim it has benefited them financially. Clearly this is a trend that is not going away.

While it is true that outsourcing has allowed U.S. companies to generally pay less for labor in many lower and mid-level job categories, opportunities still exist for jobs with higher skill-level requirements. These types of positions may require unique and innovative managerial and leadership abilities. Those who can take advantage of social networking and internet savvy may find thought-provoking, interesting career opportunities that demand extraordinary and creative self-promotion.

While your background and experience may preempt you from management-level positions, if the job market has marginalized your category of skills in a corporate setting, maybe it’s time to re-position your resume and job-search strategy.

Rather than simply trying to get hired as an employee, brand and market yourself as an independent contractor. In the office setting, this would be more accurately termed, “freelancing”. You could possibly position yourself as the person that companies look for when they elect to outsource a specific project. Instead of going over your head, they put you on the list of possible outsourcing designees.

In effect you are choosing to be considered for hire as a freelancing contractor. Yes, you give up the perks of a permanent position with an established firm. But if it means the difference between being unemployed and not, maybe it’s your most viable option at this point.

The internet has really changed the modern professional’s choices for exposing and promoting their career strengths. Part of your career change education should include familiarizing yourself with techniques for maximizing and leveraging those strengths in areas where the demand for internet-based solutions is growing.

There are millions of job seekers who find themselves in untenable, even dire situations without a salaried position. What are you doing to differentiate yourself from the rank and file unemployed or under-employed? Anyone waiting around for that old job description to be resurrected may already be slipping behind the competition.

Associate yourself with a problem-solving mind set. Whatever you discover to extract yourself out of your current career quandary could be made into a valuable lesson that others could use and would be willing to pay for if packaged in the right format.

That’s right. Your heartfelt, rigorous experience in the shifting marketplace could conceivably lead to your own educational, information product born out of your current challenges that offers valuable advice for others who are experiencing a similar career crisis.

Of course to be valuable, it needs a story line where instead of muddling through… “You achieve a breakthrough”!

There are successful affiliate marketers that are helping to sell career change education programs for colleges, universities and trade schools that pay out good commissions for visitor traffic. The affiliates that are steering referrals of prospective students to education web sites may already be building a lucrative career in affiliate marketing.

In fact there is good money to be made by those who have learned to point job seekers or career changers to career education programs being advertised on the web. This could be an additional income stream that you could use to help finance your career launch as a go-to-independent freelancer using online promotion.

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