“What’s in a name?” Shakespeare asked this question hundreds of years ago in Romeo and Juliet, and the retort is still the same.
Names and titles are as mutable as neckties and spring weather. What matters is the essence the name seeks to describe. In the case of a job title, the important thing is the actual duties you performed in that position. For example, in some companies, a sales associate is a cashier, where in other companies a person with the same title might be posting millions of dollars in sales.
Read more to discover how to find a career beyond your job title.
The Job Search
When you are searching for job openings, it’s important to be thorough in your research.
If you can narrow down your scope to one industry that is relevant to your interests and skillset, you can start sifting through potential postings. That is, don’t overlook a job listing if it doesn’t have your specific job title. Rather, investigate the duties required by the job. You might find that your background is a good match for a position whose title might seem far from your wheelhouse.
Don’t know where to begin? Consult with an HR professional to improve your job search, resume, interview techniques, and networking skills.
Take an Inventory of Your Duties
One way to start moving beyond the restrictions of your job title is to sit down and write a thorough description of what it is you actually do.
You might even take a look at your employee handbook and compare what you’ve written with the stated job description your company provides. If you find discrepancies there, then that might be even more evidence that job titles have very little meaning when it comes to real-world application.
When you take an inventory of your job, you might be surprised at what you find. Take a close look at how much time and effort goes into which tasks, then evaluate which ones you are better at. This process is aimed at you discovering your true strengths. When you can specifically identify these areas of expertise and confidence, look for jobs where these skills might be most well-received.
Doing a thorough skills assessment of your current previous jobs will help you find a way to move past your job title. This can be especially helpful when you are seeking a change in your career path. That is, when you determine what skills are really your strongest, apart from the job title, you can show potential employers your expertise in those areas and make the transition you desire.
Start Evaluating Today
If you are seeking a change of pace, you’ll find that getting down to the core functionalities of your job will help you move your life forward.
Don’t get stuck in the wrong job just because it seems to have the right title. Rather, seek the job that best suits you, and then everyone will benefit. There is no time like the present, so don’t waste another moment.
Lori Rush is the founder and president of Rush Recruiting & HR, an outsourced human resource firm that is dedicated to providing job seekers with the confidence, toolset, and skills necessary to succeed in the job market. Learn more about our job search services.