The 3 Types of Career Transitions


Though change is the only constant in life, it's human nature to resist major change because of the risks associated with it. We do what we can to avoid rocking the boat too much, to keep ourselves and those around us safe. Ironically though, playing it safe seldom gets you very far – especially in a field like Design. This industry is inundated with thought leaders and creative risk-takers, united by one common goal: to effect dynamic, positive change. That kind of impact can only be achieved through calculated, strategic risk-taking. You need to constantly evaluate your career trajectory in order to ensure that you are where you need to be: bringing real value to a company you're proud to support, being valued, respected, and compensated fairly in return, and seeing the lasting impact you create. 

Inevitable as change may be, it seldom gets easier to prepare for. It takes a great deal of planning and preparation to weather uncertainties which is why many choose to procrastinate the inevitable till the very last second – but you don't have to do this, nor should you! Your career is one of the most valuable, costly investments in your life, so something like a career transition can last months – or even years in extreme cases. You must be ready to go through the emotional journey of finding or building your career path again. We find that it’s useful to think of your career as a chess game: though there are many possible moves, there's a logical, strategic path you must take in order to play smart and achieve that checkmate.  

Nowadays, there are many attempts to commoditize the role of a career consultant through apps or other impersonal services. They attempt to give advice for resume writing, portfolio building 101, or how to land an interview – but planning your career is not as simple as reading a “How to…” guide. It takes a great amount of nuanced, strategical, design thinking to address an issue as grand as restructuring an entire professional career. To kick-start this, we've designed a fun questionnaire to help you see where you are so you can take that first step towards crafting a strategy specific to your needs. Click the button below to find out where you are and what you should be doing to reach Career Success!

When people come to us for career advice, they often do so because they don't know where to start, can’t seem to find their next job opportunity, need help with framing their resume and portfolio, or just want to find their spot within the industry. However, there are steps that need to be taken before coming to a decision about any of these things. In fact, making a hasty decision about any one of these things before proper research and consideration can lead you even further in the wrong direction and further aggravate the issue.

In my 20+ years of experience in the design strategy industry, I’ve met talent who felt compelled to go in a certain direction, no matter what advice was given, and returned years later to find that it was too late. One freelancer we spoke with came to us after a fruitless seven-year attempt to transition from advertising to service design. Although she knew that her heart wasn't in advertising, she continued to take on branding projects to pay the bills, against her better judgment and the well-intentioned advice of several colleagues. When she had finally had enough of advertising, she thought the switch to service design would be painless – but it was the exact opposite. She found herself deeply confused about where to start and quickly losing traction in her desired market, all because of her poorly informed decision-making.

We never want people to reach that point in their careers, which is why we've made it our mission to empower creatives like you to look inward and not only survive the flawed job market system as it exists today but also to transform to reach your highest potential. There are too many unsung heroes in design and we need to change this. Some transitions are incremental, but some are massive pivots from one industry to another. There’s an entire process to building a successful career strategy, and the first step is to identify the transition phase you're at. 

At YehID, we see career transitions in a more holistic way. Through our Thrive By Design program, we help you develop a successful career path strategy to reach your goals. Schedule a Breakthrough Call and start building your path to success!