You know the cliché, it’s January, a new year and the perfect opportunity to re-evaluate your life. Set goals for the year and start afresh. You might be wondering what 2017 has in store for you. Maybe it’s finally going to be the year that your dreams and thoughts become action and results.
Having worked in Pharmaceutical Recruitment in the UK for almost twenty years now we know that the number one question most people ask themselves is; “what other jobs are out there that I could do”?
The good news for you is you’re in good company, and we’re going to take you on a journey over the next few weeks that explores everything you need to think about when considering your next career move, starting at the beginning.
Begin With the End in Mind; Decide What You Really Want From Your Career
Regardless of whether you’re a GP Rep looking to move into Hospital Sales, an Oncology KAM looking to move to a similar role with a different company or a Marketing Manager looking to become a Marketing Director, it’s likely that you’re reading this article because something’s bothering you about your current work situation. At least a little bit.
Are you happy in your current environment? Do you feel valued? Is your company utilising your biggest talents? Is it time you got paid what you’re really worth? Or do you simply believe, it’s important to keep pushing yourself, exploring your options and taking calculated risks to make sure you never get stale?
It can be quite difficult to ask yourself these questions without your emotions taking over, so getting clear about what you want in the next ten, five, three or even two years will help you decipher where to focus your energy and what actions you need to take to achieve something you can be proud of.
Hopefully you’re going to land on something that makes you a little bit excited and a little bit scared – that’s when you know you’re pushing yourself to be the best you can!
Get Clear About What You Need to Do to Achieve Your Overall Goal, Then Set Yourself Some Realistic Targets
The last thing you want to do is place unnecessary pressure on yourself to make a huge jump from where you are right now. Like most things, finding a new job or managing your career is a process, not an event. Understanding what’s involved will allow you to get there in a way that doesn’t leave you out of your depth or feeling overwhelmed.
Realistic targets can also make your time from planning to achievement much quicker and will help you at job interview stage to explain why you want the job, and how you went about researching your options and making decisions.
Some ideas for smaller targets might include;
- Research your options online through search engines and industry websites, then draft an updated CV in next two weeks
- Gain input and feedback on your CV (in relation to your goals) from a credible recruitment company
- List any skills or knowledge gaps you have between where you are now and where you want to get to
- Set yourself a date to go back to the recruitment company with a revised CV and a solid record of achievement in place to demonstrate your readiness
- Start the process of closing those gaps through education courses and accredited online learning, and speaking to people who are already in the types of jobs you’re interested in
- Work with your recruiter to narrow down on 2-3 jobs that really excite you, then go for them!
Making Improvements to Your Skillset
Depending on the type of jobs you’re going to go for, it might be necessary to make improvements to your current skillset, and that might mean taking courses or learning through books and research online. Remember this is your career and you’re the one who wants to progress the most, so be prepared to do these things in your own time and potentially through paying for these things yourself (unless you can convince your current manager to support you).
You might want to become a master of business planning or influencing so that you can go for Key Account Management or more senior sales roles. In these cases, it might be prudent to take a course in planning or project management. You might at the same time choose to read some books on influencing and use these techniques in your day job.
Whatever you decide to do, create a plan before you act and build time and discipline into your weekly schedule to make it happen. Anything you learn is going to benefit you in some way both now and in the long term, and you’re sure to pick up things that will last you a lifetime.
Don’t Drop the Ball in Your Current Job
This is always easier said than done, however this is going to be critical for you to get ahead in your career.
The UK Pharma and Healthcare industries require you to be at the top of your game, so drifting away in your current role and putting too much energy into trying to make the next step too soon is going to cause you pain.
Think ahead about your interview; what are your most recent sales results going to look like? Who’s going to give you a reference? What will they say about your ability to keep focussed on what’s most important?
This list could go on, but you get the point. To ensure you keep things going well within your current employment, remind yourself of the things you love doing most in your current job and keep showing initiative and being innovative with your actions. These are important character traits that employers look for, so being able to do this will help you in your career for years to come.
Keep Positive With Your Mindset! 2017 Is Your Year
Finding a new job isn’t always going to be easy, especially if you’re looking to make a step up to the next level or move into a new area of work. It’s likely that you’re going to need to find strategies to help you stay positive, which might mean making time to appreciate the things you have in your life and being proud of yourself for continuing to be ambitious and learning new things.
The last thing you want when you are looking to make changes to your career is to get caught in a negative mind-set. So, it’s vital to keep a good positive attitude if you are serious about making changes. This can have more of an impact on your life than just how you think and feel, and can end up making the difference between you being chosen for a job over someone else.
So, with lots to do to get that job you really want now’s the time to start the process and act. Allow 2017 to be a year that you finally get to do what you want, and remember, we’re here to help you, every step of the way.