How To Make A Career Pivot During Challenging Times

Are you considering a career pivot in response to the current employment situation? If you are, you’re definitely not alone. It can be scary if you haven’t planned for it, but that doesn’t mean the timing isn’t right. In fact, it may be the perfect moment to consider new career possibilities. While some sectors are laying off or furloughing workers, others are hiring in droves. Whether it’s a change for the long haul or just the short-term, consider your transferable skills and leverage your expertise. Here is some practical advice on making a successful career pivot in these unprecedented times.

Be flexible and creative

Take an inventory of your top skills and look for creative ways to leverage them in a different capacity. Take David De Souza, for example. Before the coronavirus outbreak, De Souza worked in London as a recruitment consultant. Following his career pivot, he’s helping Boots deliver essential medical supplies. While this is a temporary position, more than 58,000 people have liked his LinkedIn post, with some even offering him job-hunting assistance. Consider the sectors that are ramping up their hiring to meet current demands, including IT, finance, manufacturing and sales. Explore jobs you may not have considered in the past. This is an excellent way to find an interim role until the economy recovers.

Embrace virtual work

As the pandemic forces millions to socially distance or quarantine, companies that can are going remote for the foreseeable future. This means that if companies are hiring, new positions may be posted as remote jobs, at least in the short term. To help you make a career pivot, consider remote-focused websites like FlexJobs, and We Work Remotely. Do you enjoy working with children? Perhaps consider virtual babysitting—a new concept where you are hired to engage children digitally. The sessions can be used to help kids with schoolwork or play games to keep them occupied. Outschool, a popular education startup, is actively looking for people to offer live, online classes for K-12 learners. They need thousands of people across the country—everything from yoga instructors to personal finance experts. You can create your own courses and set your own schedule and pricing. Typically, teachers earn around $40 per class taught, with some top teachers earning as much as $10,000 per month.

Take your business online

Starting an online business is another way to make a career pivot. These days all you need are a computer and an internet connection to turn that hobby or talent into a money-making venture. The first step is to find a business concept that matches your skills and strengths. Also, have a clear idea of who your target audience is and understand their needs and pain points. Look for opportunities in the market. Given the current situation, you may want to focus on the work from home audience, for example.

Some online business ideas that require very little startup capital include:

  • Consulting: take the things that you’re great at and use those talents to help others. Maybe you have strengths in marketing strategy, social media management, or website design. Reach out to businesses that may require those services.
  • Drop Shipping: this is a retail fulfillment method where your store doesn’t need to carry inventory. Instead, when you sell a product, you purchase the item from a third party and have it shipped directly to the customer.
  • Virtual assistant: if you have impeccable organizational skills, maybe it’s time to consider becoming a virtual assistant. VA services typically consist of basic administrative tasks like data entry, making travel arrangements, and answering phone calls. Previous experience in this field is preferred but not required.
  • Digital information products: share your expertise with customers through a digital format. This could include audio, video, or text (like an e-book). Get creative and make your content engaging and useful. Once you put these products on your website, they allow you to earn passive income.

Changing course can feel overwhelming, but it can be done. All you need are clear short and long-term goals and a roadmap to get there. As Jack Welch once said, “Control your own destiny or someone else will.” There’s never a bad time to make a successful career pivot. Life and work will be different once the storm passes. By following these strategies, you’ll be prepared for whatever the future holds.

Thinking about a career change but not sure what steps to take? Download my free guide: 7 Steps to Career Clarity