How to transition from working for a family business?

I recently made the tough decision to leave my family run business, this was a difficult decision to make, not only because of the emotional feelings attached to my work ‘colleagues’ but also actually my biggest fear was; would I be seen as employable by another company?

What questions did I ask myself?

Would I be seen as having taken the ‘easy route’ by working for family, did I only get the job because I was their daughter and, did I really possess the skills to do the job? You could argue I was suffering from a spell of imposter syndrome!

I can’t imagine I am the only person making this decision to have had these questions playing on repeat. So, what did I do to firstly, help me make the decision and secondly, how did I overcome my fear(s)?

Where did I start?

I simply started by putting pen to paper! I decided if I were to start looking for a new job, I would need to update my CV, so that’s where I began.

But what job title do I put down? Job titles are always difficult to assign in a family run business, because you really do have to roll your sleeves up, be prepared to get your hands dirty and get on with whatever needs doing. This can be anything and everything from; answering the telephone, customer service, sales, finance, marketing, IT support to making sure the bins are emptied at the end of day.

Once I started to really write down what a ‘typical’ work day looked like for me, I realised I had many transferable skills and a wealth of experience to offer.

What advice can I offer?

I appreciate for anyone looking to make the decision to leave a family business will have many factors to consider, this can include personal relationships, notice period and even imposter syndrome … to simply questioning yourself daily “Am I making the right decision”. This initial decision will always come down to personal circumstances. But when it comes to the fear of applying for new jobs, the best advice I can offer is; sit yourself down and update your CV!

Really think carefully about the role(s) you have played in your family business, the number of duties you have undertaken, daily, weekly, monthly etc. and list these as clearly as you can to really establish where your skills are, this exercise will also help you decide what you want your next job role to look like. Simple, but I found it extremely effective! If you need help updating or in fact creating your CV CLICK HERE for our expert advice.

By completing that exercise, I realized; I love working for a small company, I love a varied work day and I love having a project to work on and I am really looking forward to how my career will develop with Thompson & Terry Recruitment.