9 Easy Steps to Make a Career Switch into Tech: Where Creativity Meets Technology - Iredafe Owolabi
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How to make a career switch into tech
How to make a career switch into tech

How to Make a Career Switch into Tech Creatively

With the current buzz of AI tools like ChatGPT, Bard, and other revolutionary trends powered by technology, more and more people have began to consider transitiong or switching careers to tech.

I agree that tech is not for everyone but if you have an interest, there is no harm in exploring it in tech.

So, have you ever desired to make a career switch into tech? If yes, then this article will stir you in the right direction.

In today’s rapidly evolving world, the intersection of creativity and technology has given birth to groundbreaking innovations. These discoveries have shaped our lives in ways we couldn’t have imagined just a decade ago.

This fusion has created a dynamic and diverse landscape in the tech industry, welcoming individuals from all walks of life to embark on a career switch into this exciting field.

If you’re someone with a creative background, wondering how to bridge the gap and transition into tech, this blog is your guide to making a successful leap.

In this article, I will share some tips that can help you creatively transition to a tech career that suits you by using my personal story as inspiration.

By the way, if you want to understand what creativity really is, you can read this blog: What is Creativity? Here is My Powerful 7-Sided Definition!

9 Steps to Make a Successful Career Switch into Tech with Creativity

1. Recognize Your Transferable Skills – This is Where Creativity Meets Technology

First and foremost, realize that your creative skills are far from irrelevant in the tech sector. Problem-solving, critical thinking, communication, and the ability to think outside the box are all highly valued skills in tech roles.

These skills, often honed in creative pursuits, are directly applicable to roles such as user experience (UX) design, graphic design, content creation, and even software development.

The emergence of Digital revolution has made it possible to easily reinvent yourself and experience true adventure while deploying your creative problem solving skills.

This is something that makes a career switch into technology worth it. For me, that was what spurred my interest in software development.

Being a Chemical Engineer by the traditional education system, I discovered that I wanted more from my life than what that field offered. I had so many ideas, gifts and skills that I wanted to explore the world with.

So even before I had any interest in software development, I started out sharpening them.

The first skill sets I honed among others, were my creative writing skills, presentation, negotiation, marketing, personal branding and my public speaking skills.

To learn more about creativity, I recommend you read “Ignite Your Creativity“.

Ignite Your Creativity
Ignite Your Creativity


2. Use Your Current Skills to Fill the Gaps Creatively

Now you have identified the existing skills that made you thrive in you previous career. You probably recognized the gifts that were suppressed before. What next?

Well, your next step should be to figure out how that can compensate for what you lack in the tech field you intend to venture into.

When I discovered that I could further reinvent myself and harness my creativity by venturing into software development, it dawned on me that I had transferable skills that could help me succeed in my journey as a programmer.

One of the transferable skills was that I spend 10 hours daily writing books, and whoever read my books always fell in love with my flow of thought, use of literature, content and presentation.

You may not already be doing 10 hours on your laptop writing a book. But if you can spend at least 3 hours watching a movie or a football match, it means you have the patience required to venture into a technology related field.

This is pretty much because your job would require that quality from you if you finally make the switch into Information Technology.

Figure out a skill or trait unique to your personality and try to find ways that can help you compensate for what you may lack as you transition.

3. Embrace Lifelong Learning

Tech is an ever-evolving field, and its fast-paced nature means that continuous learning is crucial. But don’t be daunted! Your background in creativity positions you well for this challenge.

Just as artists and writers refine their craft, you can approach learning to code, mastering new software, or understanding complex algorithms as a form of creative expression.

There’s beauty in creating functional and elegant solutions through code, just as there is in crafting a beautiful painting or a compelling story.

I took online courses on educational platforms like Udemy, LinkedIn Learning and PluralSight to hone my technical skills.

You may want to take online courses, bootcamps or classes. Try to go with what works for you and spend less time with analysis paralysis.

4. Leverage Your Unique Perspective

Your creative background gives you a unique lens through which you can approach tech problems.

Creatives often have a knack for empathizing with users, understanding their needs, and crafting experiences that resonate.

This perspective can be invaluable in roles like UX/UI design, where the ability to marry aesthetics with functionality is paramount.

The fact that you come from a different background from tech is not a disadvantage. It is a leverage if you know how to use it because it makes you divergent.

For more on how divergence can boost your creativity, read this blog: How Divergent Thinking can Quickly Boost Your Creativity.

5. Network and Collaborate

Transitioning into tech involves not just mastering new skills but also building connections within the industry.

Attend tech meetups, workshops, and conferences to meet like-minded individuals who can offer guidance, mentorship, and potential job opportunities.

Collaborating on projects can help you showcase your skills, learn from others, and demonstrate your ability to work in cross-functional teams – a skill highly sought after in tech roles.

6. Upskill Strategically

Rather than feeling overwhelmed by the vast array of tech skills, focus on a specific area that aligns with your interests and strengths.

For example, if you have a background in design, you might delve into UI/UX design, web development, or digital marketing.

Tailor your learning journey to align with your career goals, and remember that you don’t need to master everything overnight.

7. Build a Strong Portfolio

In creative fields, your portfolio speaks volumes about your capabilities. The same principle applies in tech.

Showcase your projects, coding challenges, design prototypes, and any other relevant work on platforms like GitHub, or a personal website to showcase your work.

This was one step I really nailed when I was transitioning and it worked wonders for me. A strong portfolio demonstrates your proficiency and dedication to potential employers.

8. Seek Mentorship

Mentorship can provide invaluable insights and guidance as you navigate your way into the tech world.

I had 3 tech mentors whose words, support and encouragement helped me succeed.

I would always talk to them whenever I doubted that I could make it. I also consulted with them a lot to understand the tech ecosystem at that time and this helped me prepare for the life that was ahead of me.

Connect with professionals who have successfully made the transition from a creative background to tech, and learn from their experiences.

They can offer advice on overcoming challenges, finding the right opportunities, and refining your career trajectory.

Once you get good friends, colleagues and mentors that are relevant to your transitioning, learning to ask them questions.

I would recommend you read this article to understand the power of questions: The Creative Power of Questions: 5 Keys to Innovative Discoveries.

9. Be Resilient and Patient

Switching careers is not always a straightforward path, and setbacks are a natural part of the journey. Embrace failures as learning opportunities and maintain a growth mindset.

Patience is key; remember that building a new skill set and establishing yourself in a different field takes time.

Conclusion: A Career Switch into Tech

The convergence of creativity and technology has opened up a world of exciting possibilities for career switchers.

Your creative background equips you with skills that are highly transferable to the tech industry, and your unique perspective can contribute fresh ideas and solutions to complex challenges.

By embracing continuous learning, networking, and strategic upskilling, you can successfully transition into a fulfilling tech career that marries your creativity with cutting-edge innovation. This is where creativity meets technology.

So, take the leap – the world of tech is waiting to be infused with your creative spirit!

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About the Author

Iredafe is a creativity coach, author, and software engineer with a passion for unlocking creative potential and inspiring individuals to master the business of their creativity.

He is an author of 17+ books based in Canada. He speaks, writes books and blogs on topics of utmost interest which includes Creativity, 4D Thinking, Problem Solving, Authorpreneurship, and Kingdom.