Managing Career Transitions with Confidence and Resilience

Making savvy career moves can significantly increase your income and improve your job satisfaction. That’s because the average performance-based pay raise is around 3%, while earnings can increase 10 to 20% when jumping ship to a new company.

However, if you’re eyeing up a career move, you may find that the uncertainty of starting a new role takes the wind out of your sails. This is entirely understandable, as leaving for greener pastures can backfire if you fail to research a position properly before signing on the dotted line.

Rather than letting fear of the unknown rule your professional life, take a confident, resilient approach when managing career transitions. This will help you overcome speed bumps when settling in and will ensure you put your best self forward when interviewing for a new position.

Financial Stability

In an ideal world, you should be in a financially secure position before you start making bold career moves. This is particularly important if you’re a more mature employee, as you’ll have more to lose and less time to recover should something go wrong. Rather than fretting about financial concerns, achieve stability during career volatility by:

  • Income Streams: Review your income streams and use tech such as banking apps to better understand where your money is coming from. This can help you reassess risky investments and improve your stability.
  • Lifestyle Inflation: Create a budget and figure out how rising prices are squeezing your income. This is crucial if you’re approaching retirement or are looking at a period of unemployment.
  • Maximize Contributions: Securing your retirement funds should be a priority. Maximize your retirement contributions when you’re in a stable position to reduce financial stress when making a switch.

If you’re thinking of making a career change and already earn a good salary, consider speaking to a financial advisor. These professionals can help protect you against any risk involved with a change in your earning prospects. This can support your mental health by reducing your stress and alleviating fears related to income.

Mental Health Checklist

It’s easy to overlook the importance of mental health when making bold career moves. However, if you want to get the most out of a promotion or pay rise, you need to protect your emotional and psychological well-being.

Start by making a few simple changes to increase your self-efficacy when applying for new roles. Begin each day with a few self-affirmations that build your confidence and improve your self-image. This will help you recognize your skills and talents and may help you sustain healthier relationships with those around you.

Try to improve your assertiveness when making career moves. Learning to be more assertive is key to raising your self-esteem, as saying “no” improves your self-respect and helps you advocate for your own needs. This is crucial when seeking career progression, as decision-makers are far more likely to offer promotions to you if you believe in yourself and your abilities.

Leaving Your Current Role

Leaving a position for a new role is always a little awkward. However, this shouldn’t dissuade you from seeking greener pastures. As a talented employee, it’s your right to put your own needs first and give your two weeks’ notice when you’re ready to move on.

Make the transition a little easier by preparing for your exit interview before your final days arrive. This is crucial if you want to keep your professional connections intact when leaving. Preparing for awkward conversations helps you navigate the move with grace and poise. Common exit interview questions to prepare for include:

  • Why are you leaving the company?
  • What is this firm doing well/where could we improve?
  • How did this position align with your expectations? How could we have better supported you?

These questions are productive for you and the company you’re leaving. Answering these questions honestly and with grace can improve your standing with the firm and increase your odds of making a successful return to the business at a later date. Just be aware that some managers may use the exit interview to turn the screw or make the transition awkward. Be prepared to decline to answer questions like:

  • What do you think of “colleague x” and their performance?
  • Is there anything we can do to keep you?
  • Are you leaving due to a personal conflict or issue?

These questions are unprofessional and upsetting. Simply declining to comment is perfectly acceptable and will reflect well on you. Do not get into gossip and avoid the temptation to speak ill of any particular team member. This will preserve your professional integrity and help you focus on the exciting opportunities that lie ahead.


Leaving your current job can be a stressful experience. You’re in limbo while waiting to start your new role and may be worried about your financial position until your first paycheck comes in. Make the process easier by taking care of your financial position and intentionally boosting your self-esteem. This will help you navigate the transition with a more resilient, optimistic mindset and will serve you well when you start your new role.

Featured image by Unsplash

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