Facilitating a Career Change
Have you ever sat down in your workplace and asked yourself how you ended up in that situation? Perhaps you’ve decided that your job isn’t for you, or maybe you’ve come to realize that you’ve lost the passion that you’ve once had. Either way, attempting a career change later in life can be an incredibly difficult task if you’re not sure how to facilitate it.
The purpose of this article is to help you make that career change you’ve always wanted. It’s time to stop living a life of being content and instead, go for your dreams and aim for something that you’ve always wanted.
Finding Career Opportunities
The first thing to do is research career opportunities that are available for you. It goes without saying that you’ll be limited to what you can and can’t do later on in life. For instance, you can’t hope to become an athlete when you’re in your senior years, but you can indulge in sports and find other alternatives that are related to something you’re passionate about.
A good example of this is becoming a coach for a sporting team instead of actually playing for them, or managing your own gym instead of attempting to be a boxer. There are many ways to go about researching career opportunities, but here are a couple of our favourite suggestions:
- Using the internet. The internet is a fantastic source of information where you can find just about anything. Use the internet to update your knowledge on potential career swaps because you’re likely going to find something you never knew about in the past.
- Asking friends and family members. If you’re unsure where to start, then asking friends and family members is a great way to accumulate more information on career opportunities, especially if they work in industries or careers that are closely related to what you’re passionate about.
- Consider freelancing. You don’t always need to aim for a job if you don’t want to. Freelancing is a great way for people to do what they want and still earn a living, but it does take quite a bit of investment.
- The possibility of starting your own business. Speaking of investments, a career swap can always mean starting your own business and forge your own path.
- Taking initiative. If there’s something you feel incredibly passionate about then you always have the option of taking initiative to find your own career. Whether it’s making a suggestion to your skills and creating a new role in your workplace or going solo and freelancing, there are many opportunities out there for people who are willing to take initiative.
Testing the Waters
Next, you’ll want to test the waters before you actually invest in things like studying or creating your own business. Testing a career often means doing a bit of freelance work or finding a part-time job while simultaneously cutting down on your hours at your main job. This is to ensure that you don’t overload yourself with work because it can quickly become a stressful endeavour to maintain two jobs.
By testing the waters, you essentially get a taster of what your new career could be like. Of course, you can’t use it to form a complete idea of what a career is, but you can get an idea of the work you’ll be doing, the hours you’ll be working and the effort you need to invest. If you don’t test your new career ideas first, then you might end up investing too much time and effort and you might regret it.
Looking for Support
There are many different forms of support you can expect when trying that career change. Seek assistance from friends and family members if you feel like you’re having a hard time balancing your career and learning something new. If you’re planning to go solo as a freelancer, then there are plenty of freelancing forums that can help you get a good head start. They’ll tell you all about how to invoice, they’ll give you tips on how to chase down payments and they’ll also offer advice on creating an enticing portfolio to help you get more customers. There are also many different websites out there which specialize in supporting freelancers with the help of blog posts and news articles.
Similarly, you can attempt to find a mentor if you’re planning on trying a self-employed career. Business mentors can help you start your company with useful advice and they can have an enormous impact on the success rate of your business. Finding a mentor can be difficult if you’re not already involved in an industry, so make sure you look at social media platforms such as LinkedIn to find the right people to teach you about business.
And lastly, you might be surprised to find that some employers will be more than willing to help facilitate your swap to a new career. This is usually as a gesture of goodwill to thank you for your services at your current workplace. They’ll be more than willing act as a reference and they might even offer you some time off work to help you get things into order before you make the final decision of quitting your job.
Juggling Career and Study
Keep in mind that some career swaps are going to require you to study an official qualification or degree and this can take up a lot of time. If you want to work while you study, then you may want to look at convenient alternatives such as online studying. For example, you can obtain a Masters of counseling online degree if you’re interested in becoming a counsellor, or you could learn how to paint and draw on the internet if you’re interested in becoming an artist. There are many ways to go about juggling your career and studies and it’s all about effectively using your time in order to make the most of each hour in your day.
It might also be expensive to study a completely new career choice, so make sure you’ve got plenty of savings leftover to help pay for courses and lessons. This is another reason why people tend to juggle their career and study together; because it makes sense to be self-sufficient and pay for your own studying
Quitting Your Old Job Gracefully
Lastly, we need to think about quitting your old job gracefully. Remember that your old employer can always be helpful in the future as a reference, so you want to try and keep the relationship as positive as possible. Let your employer know that you plan to change your career in the future and that you plan to quit your job at least two weeks in advance. This is to ensure that you don’t put your employer and colleagues in a difficult position once you leave, and so your employer has plenty of time to find a replacement.
If you suddenly quit, then it can cause the relationship between you and your former employer to worsen, and this could harm your chances of finding a new job in the future. Just remember to quit gracefully and sever your ties with your old employer in a way that doesn’t harm their company.
Hopefully, these tips have given you a good idea of how you can facilitate a career change later in the life. In your later years, you don’t have much time to spend trying new things, hence why doing your research and testing the waters is paramount to the success of your career change.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I have not received any compensation for writing this post. I have no material connection to the brands, products, or services that I have mentioned. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."