The world of finance is hugely appealing to many people, particularly when it comes to career progression. Accountants, financial managers, and other budget-based roles are certainly highly sought-after, not to mention well paid. Not everyone comes from a financial background, however. Many of us went off to college with different ambitions, and so it can feel challenging to think about making a complete career side-step.
In order to side-step your career in the world of finance, here’s how to go about it:
- Chat with your boss
- Consider part-time education
- Experiment with trading simulators
- Show and demonstrate an interest
- Collect relevant experience
- Find a mentor
- Closing Remarks
How to Side-Step Your Career into the World of Finance
Chat with your boss
Before you start dreaming of ditching your current job for somewhere better and far, far away, be sure to check whether you have support from your own company. Ask to have a meeting with your line manager or a member of senior management to discuss how you want to progress within the company. If you work in a larger corporation, you might be surprised by their capacity to train you up in a new position. If they are prepared to do this, it shows their willingness and desire to keep hold of you as an employee.
Consider part-time education
We can’t all afford to take time out for a three-year degree to completely re-train. If we have rent to pay, children to feed or other commitments, it’s not always practical to devote your full schedule to education.
Choosing a part-time online degree might be far more practical. This way you can continue to either work your way up in the company you’re currently in or take up a part-time role somewhere else to improve your resume. You can easily study accounting from the comfort of your own home, from websites such as this one here.
Experiment with trading simulators
You might be surprised by how many resources there are out there for you. Trading simulators, such as those by Investopedia, help you to build a would-be portfolio and gain a little experience. They also get you into the practice of checking the markets regularly. Crucially, they also allow you to generate a portfolio with a minimum amount of investment.
Show and demonstrate an interest
Whether you’re side-stepping in your career within a company or you decide to hunt elsewhere for job positions, it’s good practice to display an ongoing interest in finance. This can be hard if you’ve never had a demonstrable career in this area.
However, you can do this by starting a blog. Writing posts about current topics that interest you, or maybe even your investment ideas might be a great way of illustrating your active enthusiasm for this sector.
Collect relevant experience
Becoming trained is half the battle when it comes to being an accountant or working in the world of finance. It’s useful to be able to demonstrate that you have the relevant skills, even if you’ve been working in a completely different industry. For example, a finance job such as accounting is actually completely deadline-driven. When you’re re-building your resume, try and think of examples of when you’ve had to stick to a tight and un-moving deadline.
It may also help you to start doing the odd job for small companies. Working in finance on a freelance basis (alongside your current job), may help you to start building that knowledge. For example, helping a small business with their accounts, or maybe even a few freelancers with their tax returns could be a generous way of showing your willingness to apply yourself.
Find a mentor
Working in any industry is hard if you feel as if the path forward is relatively unknown. Therefore it could be helpful to you to chat with someone in that sector. If you’re looking to side-step within the company you currently work for, then chatting to a mentor could help you gain some knowledge about the position you want and what the expectations are for that role. Finding a mentor is also a great way of networking. When you do finally qualify, your mentor may be a helpful reference for you when you fill out those job applications.
Making a drastic shift in your career can feel incredibly intimidating. There will always be the worry about ‘making it’ or not being quite good enough. However, the best way to dodge these anxieties is to research the job role you’re after extensively beforehand. Be sure to investigate the job availability in your area, and what qualifications companies are currently looking for. Talking to a mentor within your workplace could help you to stay within the business you currently work in, as well as give you some real insight.