Over the past 2 weeks, I have been spending time communicating to individuals on ways to enter into the Tech field. Some listened to my 5 minutes and 17 seconds on The Karen Hunter Show, however, many found me from referrals by those who listened to me live on The Show or via a recording of The Show (Sirius On Demand is a beautiful thing!).
As I reflect on my conversations, email responses and quick phone chats, I realized the common theme: People need guidance on the first steps to take to enter into the Tech field. I have spoken to MBAs, Financial Analysts, Attorneys (just to name a few); all who want to know where and how should they start (remember, you don’t need a computer science, information technology or software engineering background to get into this tech space!) As a result, here are the the top 4 things you can do now to begin your journey into the tech field.
Assessment your strengths. Yes, get out your notebook, turn to a fresh page, and list your strengths! What are you great at? What do you enjoy doing? This is important because when you make a career change to enter a new field, you must come into the field with the passion mindset: Love What You Do!
You may be already in a situation where you don't like what you do, so be bold and have the courage to focus on your passions, strengths and desires. Trust me, your passion mindset will make a difference if your frustration levels start to run high because you are learning something new. When I first started in the tech space as a Junior ERP Consultant, I was excited and terrified! There were moments of self-doubt, but, because I was excited and started to love what I was learning, my confidence grew! Remember, be brave and focus on your passions. “Don't waste your time with things that don’t excite you. Find your passions and go out there and grab them with both hands.” - Richard Branson
Research and study information technology (IT) job descriptions then match your skill set to the position requirements. Are you a good listener? A great verbal communicator? A person with a detail oriented personality? Do you have a customer-centric mentality? Are you organized and have a strong attention to detail? Scan the job descriptions carefully and highlight the tasks that match your skill set and capabilities. Now, start to list the different scenarios in which you've needed to use those skills. For example, let's say one job description requirement is as follows: "Excellent communication and facilitation skills". Pretty broad right? You may be saying to yourself, "Yes, I am an awesome communicator, I can do this!" It is important for you to write down the specific scenarios as to when you utilized your amazing communication skills. List the effectiveness and results of your communication scenarios. This is also an excellent exercise to support you in preparing for your IT project interviews. As you speak to the Hiring or Project Manager, you will be prepared to speak on how your experience is aligned with the duties required to be successful in the position. “The flower doesn't dream of the bee. It blossoms and the bee comes.” – Mark Nepo
Research training options then enroll! Throughout my 16-year career, I have spent thousands of dollars on self- education, industry newspapers, magazine subscriptions, conferences and seminars. The tech field constantly changes and it is important for you to become an avid learner. Software releases, upgrades and system capabilities are consistently enhanced and released with new functionality. Consider The Virtual Training Academy (The VTA) as one of your training options. We have developed interactive curriculum, complete with scenarios and transactions from real business implementations to empower participants to become proficient in one of the key Oracle application paths. The goal of The VTA is to teach learners how to absorb, learn and use Oracle technology as a tools, embrace business concepts and support VTA participants on their journey of becoming a Functional Consultant or IT Trainer. Click here for more information: https://thevta.ontrapages.com/enroll. “We spend money that we do not have, on things we do not need, to impress people who do not care.” – Will Smith
Rediscover who YOU know, who THEY know, then make connections. In other words, who in your network is in the tech field? What do they do in the tech field? Who, in your network, is connected with someone in the tech field? Is what they do aligned with your desires? Reach out, talk to them and you may find a mentor! Don't be shy! People innately want to help others, so see who knows who and share your desires. Build relationships within your networks! “People who write down their goals are 42% more likely to achieve them. Telling a friend increases this rate to 78%” – Murray Newlands
Are you looking to shift into the Tech field? Have you already made the shift into the Tech field from another career? If so, I’d love to hear what worked for you! Please share in the comment section below – you never know who you may support when they read your journey into the Tech space.
Until next time, continue to embrace your journey!
P.S. – The views reflected above are based on my experiences and interactions with others. My views, by no means, are the “end all be all”. The results you get are entirely dependent on your personal efforts, your experience, resources and other factors. I just wanted to take a moment to express a few steps that worked for me and several of my colleagues when we entered into the Tech space.