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Career Change Hack: Skill Stacking

Updated: Aug 24, 2022

It's never too late to make a career change.

Your key to making a change: transferable skills and skill stacking.

The idea is pretty simple - show how your past experiences and current skills will help you in your new role.

I've personally changed industries/careers several times and I know that you can do it too. Let me show you how to make it work:

My undergraduate degree is in mechanical engineering - which on the surface seems to have nothing to do with being a career coach/resume writer, but I gained valuable skills such as problem solving, research, and analysis as an engineer.

After undergrad, I worked for Procter & Gamble for 5 years, managing multi-million dollar projects and leading up to 30 team members.

Transferable Skills: Project management, coaching, and leadership

Next I earned my MBA, developing my skills in finance and strategy.

In my next role as an Analyst for FedEx, I specialized in advanced financial analysis. I worked extensively with our sales team to develop customized pricing for Fortune 500 clients.

Transferable Skills: Financial analysis, research, relationship building, and pricing

When my 1st child was born 16 years ago, I left my role with FedEx because I really wanted flexible work. At the time, I had no plan for what I would do next. I had always loved to write (although I hadn’t taken an English course since high school).

So I used my transferable skills in financial analysis and research to start freelance writing about business and investing. I contributed 175 articles to The Motley Fool and have published work with Investopedia and Bloomberg Business among others.

At the same time, I started writing resumes. I've never heard a high school student that they want to be a professional resume writer when they grow up (that certainly wasn't my aspiration when I started engineering school!), but I used skill stacking to build a business where I can actively help clients to change careers in the same way that I have.

Have you used skill stacking to change careers? Share your success stories in the comments. And if you'd like to change careers but aren't sure how, ask your questions in the comments.

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