3 Career Change Strategies for Former Entrepreneurs
As the economy fluctuates, many entrepreneurs consider their long careers and successes in the companies they built. We hear of high-tech leaders who built companies from their basements, and we hear of manufacturing leaders who built product suites appealing to the mass market. If you are an entrepreneur with a company that has potentially maxed it out its life cycle or that is about to be sold, you might be considering entering the paid workforce as an employee in another company. Read on for three career advancement strategies for former entrepreneurs that you can use right now to build a smart plan for your career transition.
1. Define your network.
Of course, as an entrepreneur, you know lots of people. You meet them in business meetings, in your Chamber of Commerce, through friends, and through friends of friends. However, have you ever approach any of them with critical business questions? It is even less likely that you have approached this network with questions about your own career advancement. Now is the time to revive old relationships. Building out the number of people on whom you can call to ask about opportunities in other industries or other companies is going to be an essential if difficult part of this process.
2. Assess your own skill set.
As an entrepreneur, you likely wear many hats. Depending on the type of fire you are putting out, you might be CFO, CEO, or CIO on any given day. You might also be sales executive, human resources executive, or the guy who has to run to the hardware store to pick up a new light switch. Other entrepreneurs would sympathize with how thinly you have been stretched. They would also understand that you might find it hard to identify the skills you want to build on in a new role. Thus, it would be wise for you to take an hour or two and inventory what you love about your job, what you hate about it, and where your skills fit in to what you want to be doing next. If you have no idea where your assets might be of value in a corporate environment, now is the time to speak with an expert, such as an executive career consultant, who can help you make that determination.
3. Prepare your resume and career portfolio.
If you know exactly what you want to be doing in a new company, now is the time to have your executive resume prepared. (If you are still in decision-making mode, go back to number 2 on this list. Preparing yourself for a new career but taking the steps out of order will result only in your mounting frustration.) If you have done the research, then you know what goes into writing a resume for a former entrepreneur that resonates with hiring executives in the current market. You’ll know how to enhance your marketability to somebody who is scanning your document in perhaps 20 seconds or less. You can find many resources in the library or on the Internet that will explain how to write, organize, and design the modern executive resume. At the same time, do not neglect to prepare an effective LinkedIn profile that will get you found by the hiring executives and recruiters who are looking for experts like yourself. For certain, if you find the resume and career portfolio writing process daunting, as many executives in your situation do, then engaging a career management consultant who knows how to do this might be a wise choice for you.