Changing Careers...

WinklebottomWinklebottom Registered User regular
I currently hate my job, I'm a graphic designer and I work for a really crappy company that treats me poorly. I just want a new job, I don't even care what I'm doing. The only problem is I need to make around the same amount I make where I work ($14.50 an hour), where I live graphic design positions are relatively rare. I was wondering if anyone had any advice?

Posts

  • IrukaIruka Registered User, Moderator mod
    If you have a decent portfolio you could begin seeking out freelance, it's not usually reliable, but it could help you transition into a job somewhere else.

    It would be useful to know a general area where you are, or if you have any other applicable skills for anything.

  • WinklebottomWinklebottom Registered User regular
    I live in Central Alabama, and here is the current skill set I use at work:
    Responsible for Typesetting/Designing all jobs that came through the shop,
    managing timetables,
    troubleshooting all network and computer problems,
    producing finished pieces on digital printing equipment
    and interacting with customers for the proofing process.

    Also I can touch type quite quickly and have a Bachelor's Degree in Fine Arts.

  • EncEnc A Fool with Compassion The Land of Flowers (and Dragons)Registered User regular
    edited July 2017
    This link might be useful:
    https://www.onetonline.org/find/quick?s=graphic+designer

    All of these use most or all of your listed skills as a graphic designer. If you click one, such as:
    Graphic Designers: https://www.onetonline.org/link/summary/27-1024.00
    You can get a feel for industry skills (which can be useful for resume writing) and also find median pay information/credentialing/employment trends in your area (etc.). For example, Graphic Designers are growing faster in Alabama as a whole than the rest of the state, but still not by a ton comparatively (60 new positions are expected to be needed between 2014-2024), which is 3% faster than the rest of the country internally, but only in percent of people employed. That isn't including replacing those attributing from positions, so the outlook is always slightly better. That said, Alabama doesn't have a huge employment base in this field (only ~2000 people do that state wide), so that may hold you back a bit. 1% Growth in, say, New York may be 2000 new jobs (for example).

    Most importantly, there are ways to directly search jobs in your area. for Graphic Design I found about 8 jobs around Huntsville, AL, one outside of Mobile, and 3 in Birmingham assuming bachelors degree and 2 years of experience in field. And that's just for that position. Average pay in your state for Graphic design trails a bit (entry level would be $25,010 per year, while mid-career would be about $38,880. You appear to be making about ~$30,000 which might make most transitions lateral or lower unless you have a large portfolio and network.

    In most cases, you will want to look at that first link which shows a range of job titles that cover similar skills. Less well known job titles frequently pay slightly better. And soft skills are highly transferable.

    Enc on
  • WinklebottomWinklebottom Registered User regular
    I've been were am at for almost a decade, where is the best place to look for open positions?

  • EncEnc A Fool with Compassion The Land of Flowers (and Dragons)Registered User regular
    There is no single place. You'll want to look at as many different job boards as you can.

    NightDragon
  • BlindZenDriverBlindZenDriver Registered User regular
    Sounds to me as you could also do like IT-support jobs, either in a call center or a in house position in a non-IT company. You could perhaps broaden your job search to that sort of positions - not sure what sort of pay they would bring though(over here a Mc-job brings about what you're making, so my reference gotta be off).

    Bones heal, glory is forever.
  • mRahmanimRahmani DetroitRegistered User regular
    What do you want to be doing that you're currently not?

    Since you already have a job, you have time to look for a new position that's a good fit. Your goal here isn't to find something new in two weeks; it may take 6 months or even a year. The goal is to find something that's the kind of fit you're looking for. However, step one on that path is sorting out what your ideal (and attainable) position looks like.

  • DarkewolfeDarkewolfe Registered User regular
    mRahmani wrote: »
    What do you want to be doing that you're currently not?

    Since you already have a job, you have time to look for a new position that's a good fit. Your goal here isn't to find something new in two weeks; it may take 6 months or even a year. The goal is to find something that's the kind of fit you're looking for. However, step one on that path is sorting out what your ideal (and attainable) position looks like.

    I did this over about 5 years, and here was my general approach: I first identified the position I wanted to be "when I grow up." I met with folks who did that kind of work, looked at recruiters recruiting that kind of work, and looked at companies that did that kind of work. I figured out what someone's resume would look like to be that person. Then I spent several years training up skills, getting certifications, and making two job moves (including volunteering for certain assignments) to make my resume look like that resume. That's the best way to do something like this, I think.

    What is this I don't even.
    LailmRahmani
  • WinklebottomWinklebottom Registered User regular
    I want a job where when I clock out at night I don't feel like I'm taking it home with me in the car. Does that make sense, right now It feel like all I do is get up go to work, get treated like crap, and come home and dread going back to work until the cycle repeats.

  • DarkewolfeDarkewolfe Registered User regular
    Yeah. We'd all like that. :P

    What is this I don't even.
    ElvenshaeEnc
  • WinklebottomWinklebottom Registered User regular
    hehe tall order...

  • BlindZenDriverBlindZenDriver Registered User regular
    I want a job where when I clock out at night I don't feel like I'm taking it home with me in the car. Does that make sense, right now It feel like all I do is get up go to work, get treated like crap, and come home and dread going back to work until the cycle repeats.

    That makes a lot of sense.
    In my view there should be two kind of jobs, the types where what you do is simple enough you don't give it one thought while being of work and the types where at times what you do at work is challenging in good ways and your brain might keep thinking about that after work. Which of those two one choose is then a personal preference.

    Is there no chance of chance of changes at your current job that would change it from the current situation to a nice place to work. I should think it is likely that if you feel that way so do others at your job, maybe talking about what is wrong and finding shared ways to change things could be a way forward.

    Bones heal, glory is forever.
  • WinklebottomWinklebottom Registered User regular
    No, see I have somehow become the company whipping boy, no matter what goes wrong it is pinned on me and I am literally yelled at for it. In fact often, when one of the owners is having a bad day, they will find something to yell at me for.

  • EncEnc A Fool with Compassion The Land of Flowers (and Dragons)Registered User regular
    So at this point your new part time job is applying for jobs then. Tailor resumes and cover letters for each position, send at least one out each day, etc..

    If that is your current role, it probably won't last too much longer. Assume termination is right around the corner and act accordingly. Its always easier to find a job when you have one.

  • mRahmanimRahmani DetroitRegistered User regular
    edited July 2017
    Ok, you've talked about what you want your work environment to look like, but you haven't talked about what you actually want to do. Do you want to continue doing graphic design? Do you want to pivot to the IT side of things?
    I want a job where when I clock out at night I don't feel like I'm taking it home with me in the car. Does that make sense, right now It feel like all I do is get up go to work, get treated like crap, and come home and dread going back to work until the cycle repeats.

    Taking your work home is partly a matter of the company work-life culture and partly your own work ethic. I will say that pretty much any professional job is going to have times where you need to put in some hours outside of work. I generally leave my work at work, but sometimes shit happens and it turns out I need to log in on Saturday morning and fix things.

    Remember that interviews are a two way street - the company isn't just interviewing you, you're also interviewing them. Ask questions about the company culture and expectations. If they expect you to be thinking about work 24/7, that's probably a sign that the job isn't a good fit.

    mRahmani on
    Enc
  • WinklebottomWinklebottom Registered User regular
    I enjoy graphic design, but I don't think I enjoy the graphic design work-life. I would like to pivot to something else. Anything else almost, I've even applied to be a cable installer.

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