Career counselling-Career planning & career guidance

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business analyst product manager

Akhilendra pratap singh

I am a product manager with over 14 years experience in technology and i have been coaching, helping & mentoring students & working professionals in switching careers and moving to better career path. Contact me if you are looking for a mentor. Email- info@akhilendra.com

Are you confused about your career & need career counselling or guidance to plan your career?

Or let me put it this way, how do you plan your career?

  • Do you usually follow trial and error process?
  • Do you want something but your profile is not ready? Or
  • Based on academics or work experience, you are fit for a particular job but you don’t like it. You want to move to better paying or rewarding career options like business analysis, product management or data science. 

If you have been applying to lots of jobs and not getting appropriate response, it means that either 

  • There is a problem with the profile which you have updated on job sites or 
  • Your resume/cv is not good or 
  • You simply lack the skills required for the jobs you are applying. 

Sometime it could be a small problem and you can easily fix it.

But sometime you need to get professional help.

Let me put this straight, if you are looking for any kind of mentoring, counselling or guidance, you are on right track. Because lot of time people waste lot of time and effort without performing root cause analysis. They don’t even have awareness about the primary problem.

In order to fix any problem, you need to first know the actual problem and then identify the solution.

A lot of time what we perceive as problem is, merely a symptom. 

Sometime we doesn’t have enough information about job market but we continue with our conventional job search approach and it doesn’t lead us anywhere.

If you have just started out with your career or even if you are somewhat experienced, you can’t afford to make too many mistakes with your career path.

Remember time is money


Especially for experienced professionals who are looking to change industry or profile because it is easier to switch to new roles with lesser experience. If you fail to do it for 2 years, your experience has gone up in irrelevant or undesired profile. 

A lot of time people, first spend lot of time thinking about their options, then they get frustrated and make wrong decisions.

Career counselling, career planning & career guidance


Career planning strategy


You need to review your strategy. You need to focus on three elements of your profile for a optimised job search and career planning strategy;

  1. Optimize your resume 
  2. Optimize your profile on LinkedIn and job sites like naukri or Glassdoor. HR or job hunters usually use keywords like “business analyst”, “ data scientist” or “Product manager” to search for profiles. If your profile is not optimised with correct keywords, it won’t appear in the list and you will miss out on important calls. It’s an entirely different equation when they find your profile and they call you whereas if you apply on these job sites or on their career’s websites, you still have a chance but significantly lesser chances if they call you.
  3. Identify jobs which are currently best fit based on your academics, skills and job experience.
  4. If you want to change your profile and get into some new role, identify your desired or dream career path. Refer to the below section for details.

Change your career path & move to new/different roles


This strategy is also relevant if you are a college grad with no work experience because you are just starting out and you can use guidance mentioned here to build your profile & plan your career. 

Let’s say you are currently a working professional with following details;

  1. Experience less than 8 years
  2. Working in non-tech sector like banking, insurance, real estate etc.
  3. Technical or management academics like B.tech, BE or MBA etc. 

Now you want to move to a technology or IT company. You might be interested in following roles or any other;

  1. Business analyst
  2. Product owner
  3. Scrum master 
  4. Product management
  5. Data analyst
  6. Data scientist 
  7. Project manager

Let me explain. 

Let’s say you have got either one or more of the following degrees or academic qualification;

  1. Bachelor of technology or any other technology or engineering or STEM based degree
  2. Master of business (MBA) or similar management degree like PGDM
  3. No job experience or Non tech/IT job experience

Out of college, you started your career in some non-tech company. Now you are not happy because of the salary or work culture or future growth prospects. 

You want to change, not only your company, but also your profile. 

Now for freshers, it could be easier because absence of any work experience becomes a virtue here. You can just focus on acquiring relevant skills, certifications and prepare for interviews.

But for experienced professionals, it could be a nightmare if they don’t plan it correctly. 

Because your experience in non-tech sector becomes a bottleneck here. All companies only want to hire resources who are ready for work. Nobody likes to train a resources.

So it is quite difficult for working professional. And level of difficulties is directly proportional to numbers of years of experience.

So if you work experience is 2 years, it will be relatively easier for you but if your work experience is 8 years, it is going to be much harder.

Therefore if you plan to change your profile or industry, start early and try to do it quickly.  

You need to do following things in order to prepare for it;

  1. Identify your dream job or company. Let’s say product manager with Google. 
  2. Now search LinkedIn, Glassdoor or any other job sites for this position with similar companies like in addition to google, also search for product manager with MicrosoftAppleFacebookAmazon etc. 
  3. Copy/paste job descriptions in a spreadsheet like excel or numbers.
  4. Repeat this exercise for 15-20 companies.
  5. Now use LinkedIn to find these profiles. For example search linkedin for product managers. 
  6. Find 15-20 profiles.
  7. Copy/paste their data like experience, skills, certifications, academics, job description in the same spreadsheet which you used earlier.
  8. Now you have gathered data and you need to perform data mining. You need to identify the most common skills, responsibilities or any other keyword you could find. For example if you are looking for data science or data scientist position, R language, python, numpy, pandas or tensor flow would be quite common in skills & responsibilities. You need to collect such terms or keywords. 
  9. Now we will do skill mapping. This will include all the keywords from the last step. You will create a simple list and see if you have or doesn’t have those skills. This step will tell you where you stand in the job market or how ready you are for the desired job profile. 
  10. Now you need to acquire these skills. You will find all kinds of online courses today. Whether you want to become a business analyst or data scientist, you can easily find a good course to help you with necessary skills. So enrol in such course and start learning required topics.
  11. In the meantime, you need to update your cv with required keywords. So update your cv.
  12. You also need to update your profile on the job sites and linkedin so that your profile is returned on search results for the desired keywords. 


Career counselling conclusion


If you follow the above explained steps, you can not only get any job but your preferred job.

Whenever you are preparing for any interviews, always get help from a mentor who is experienced in the same field. If you can’t get a coach or mentor, use your family or friends to practice. 

Practice is key to cracking any interviews. So prepare multiple times before interview. Google and try to find out questions which are relevant to your job interview. Use them and try to speak like you should do in interviews.

And yes, practice power posing before interviews. They can add lot of value and your performance can significantly improve in interviews. If you are not sure what is power posing, click here.

If you have any doubt about any step or any question in general, please leave your comments.

And yes, don’t forget to share the post with your family or friends who are looking for a job.


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About akhilendra

Hi, I’m Akhilendra and I write about Product management, Business Analysis, Data Science, IT & Web. Join me on Twitter, Facebook & Linkedin

Comments

  1. this website is so resourceful,helped me clear alot of my doubts and they were extremely helful you should check it out.

  2. this website is so resourceful,helped me clear alot of my doubts and they were extremely helful

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