You can start preparing for your career transition long before you retire as an athlete, which will help you to adapt more easily to a new workplace environment.
Working on and updating your CV is the best place to start, then you can consider interview techniques, adding to your skillset and starting to network.
Internships and work placements could be a great opportunity for you to get your foot in the door and gain invaluable experience.
1. Get your CV sorted
A good curriculum vitae (CV) – or résumé – is the first step to securing your dream job. You’ll need to send this to prospective employers so that they can see how suitable you are for the role. But don’t panic if you’ve never written one before – there is plenty of help available specifically for athletes.
2. Work on your interview technique
If writing a CV is the first step, then going for a job interview is often the final hurdle to starting your new career. You’ll be competing against all the other shortlisted candidates, so you need to train for the big day just as you would for a major competition.
3. Add to your skillset
If you’re worried that you may not be experienced or qualified enough for the career path you want to follow, why not add to your skillset by taking a course or completing a training programme? There are plenty of flexible options available so that you can gain new skills even while you are still training and competing. Check out these tips to see how you can combine sport and education.
4. Connect with your network
You may not realise it, but there are probably lots of people you have met during your sporting life who could help you get a head-start in your new career. Research suggests that 85 per cent of all jobs are filled through networking, so it’s worth connecting with as many people as possible whenever you can.
5. Try getting some workplace experience
As an athlete, you may have little or no experience of a traditional workplace, which can be a daunting prospect when you’re facing retirement from sport. It’s a great idea, therefore, to look for internships or work placements, which can give you some invaluable experience, as well as a host of other benefits.