Go to college. See the career-planning director at a local university. Volunteer to join a panel of speakers to discuss careers for graduating seniors. You’ll meet fellow speakers from different fields and hear them reflect on their work. Even if the panel doesn’t materialize, check out the career-planning resources that college students use. Many of these resources can help you, too. Example: Personality tests, reference guides, alumni directories.
Research online. At WetFeet.com (www.wetfeet.com), you can get acquainted with hundreds of companies in dozens of industries. The site provides daily accounts of what leading executives actually do every day, along with the pros and cons of working in a specific field.
Don’t miss the “Real People Profile,” where managers discuss how they landed in their job and what challenges they face. It’s like having a friend reveal what it’s really like to work in that industry.
Scout new settings. Visit friends, relatives and other contacts at work. Ask for a tour. Meet employees and ask about their jobs.
The greater your exposure to different work environments, the more ideas you’ll get about new careers.