Most of us don’t follow our passions when choosing a career, whether for fear of failure, lack of time, financial constraints, or other reasons. However, it’s never too late to pursue something we love, especially if we’re unhappy in our professions and looking for a change. The first step is finding our passions and following them!
Mark Zuckerberg, Steve Jobs, Chris Gardner, and Warren Buffet all followed their passions — and you can, too. These five tips will help you to turn your passion into a profitable career you love.
1. Set Goals
To turn a passion into a profitable career, you need to have goals. Not only will these goals motivate you to pursue a career or business you love, but you’ll set yourself up for long-term success. A few possible goals may include:
- Starting your own business.
- Landing a job at a new company.
- Learning new skills.
- Earning a college degree or certification.
- Building a professional network.
As a general rule, goals should be simple, measurable, achievable, realistic, and time-based (SMART). And once you’ve set your career goals, it’s best to tackle the small, attainable goals (like learning a skill) before moving onto the larger ones (like earning a degree or launching a business).
2. Build Business Acumen
If you’re interested in entrepreneurship or thinking of pursuing a business career for the first time, you’ll need to develop your business acumen — and it may be worthwhile to go back to school. Flexible degree programs are offered in areas such as accounting, business administration, and IT management — and you could even complete your entire degree online! With an online accounting degree from Western Governors University (WGU), for instance, you’ll learn key skills in finance, business ethics, economics, marketing, and more.
If going back to school isn’t the right move for you, there are other ways to build your business acumen. SmallBusinessify.com shares some tips for improving your self-awareness, developing an understanding of key business principles, and sharpening your strategic thinking skills.
3. Practice, Practice, Practice
According to Malcolm Gladwell, it takes approximately 10,000 hours of practice to master your craft (or more than 416 days). So the more you can practice and improve your skills now, the more skilled you’ll be by the time you’re ready to turn your passion into profit.
In addition to practicing your existing skills, it’s also important to build a combination of new skills. If you’re launching your own business, for instance, you’ll need to master skills such as delegation, communication, digital marketing, and customer service. Or, if you’re applying for a job, you may wish to improve your time management, teamwork, flexibility, and leadership skills to put yourself ahead of the competition.
4. Do Something Different
Whether you’re passionate about art, woodworking, writing, photography, or any other interest area, it’s important to think about what other businesses in the industry are lacking — and how you could do things differently (and better). Here are some strategies for finding — and filling — voids in your market:
- Research consumer trends in your industry.
- Read negative customer reviews of your competitors.
- Develop a product or service that solves an existing problem.
- Offer value-added services, like excellent customer support, incentives, and loyalty programs.
5. Get Your Name Out There
Before jumping right in and advertising your products and services to paying customers (or applying for a new job at an existing employer), get your name out there by doing some work for free. You could volunteer with a nonprofit organization or provide friends and family members with free products or services. This work experience can be added to your professional portfolio, and it’ll also help you to build on your skills and get a feel for your new career.
The Bottom Line
People who pursue their passions are often happier in their personal and professional lives, and you can be too if you keep these tips in mind. However, career changes don’t happen overnight — so what are you waiting for?
Looking for expert entrepreneurial advice and tips for growing your small business? Connect with mentors and like-minded entrepreneurs in our global community today.
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You can connect with him here: Inbizability.com
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