How To Switch Careers Later In Life
Finding a career that you enjoy and want to stick with in life is hard enough. But finding out that you don’t enjoy your chosen career anymore is even harder. Changing your career later on is harder still. It can often come as a shock to people when they realize that their chosen careers, the one that they worked into for the last x amount on years in is no longer doing it for them, that the passion or spark is gone. It can be daunting to actually try to change your careers at this stage, which is why many people don’t even try. However, it can be quite a rewarding experience for those that fight past that fear and actually try to change their careers.
Still it is easier said than done, which means that just deciding to change your career is not enough; though it is a step in the right direction. In reality, the battle is just beginning. In order to help you out, here are some tips to help you in your career change.
Redeploy your skills
Many people can be daunted by the fact that they will have to pick up new skills and that everything they have done and learned in the last x amount of years has been for naught. However, that is not the case. In fact, the skills that you previously learned might be a hidden boom, and just may be what employers in your new career path looking for. You just have to know how to use those to your benefit.
You have to learn how to redeploy your skills. What that means, is that you need to market your previous skills in a manner that you highlight how those will help you in your new career. For example, you may have picked up great sales techniques or management techniques, these skills are bound to come in handy in any career. Plus nothing beats experience, and you definitely would have years of firsthand experience in your previous career. You just need to think out of the box to see which of your previously learned skills might be a boon in your new career.
Reposition your resume
A new career path definitely demands a new resume. However, that does not mean that you completely toss out your old one. Rather, this is the ideal time to refurbish or reposition your resume. You need to dust it off and trim all the unnecessary bits that will no longer help you out in the new career.
However, don’t be in a hurry to cut your previous positions and skills. A number of those skills might be utilized in the new job, and a number of your previous positions can highlight the skills and experience that your new prospective employer might be looking for. So, you need to sit down and see which of your previous skills can be redeployed into your new career, and which of your previous positions highlights those skills.
Once you have a new resume in hand, it is time to start looking for that new job. However, it is not that easy. It may even be difficult to get an interview, as most employers would rather hire somebody from the same career path rather than from a new one. Still it is not impossible. One just has to persevere.
One good way to look for jobs is to network. People that are already in your network know and trust you. They know how to you work and your value. Hence, if they are looking to hire somebody they will be more likely to hire you as they know your work, and trust you. Additionally, even if they are not looking to hire, they are more likely to promote you and champion you within their own networks; and nothing speaks higher than a glowing recommendation from a peer.
Choosing a new career can be hard, and you certainly don’t want to make a mistake, lest you be stuck for a few more years in a career that does not incite your passion. Hence, internships can be of great help here. Firstly, they will help you get a feel for the new career and a chance to see it live in action. Often it happens that we tend to have an ideal image in our heads, and the reality never seems to measure up. Hence, getting a real feel of the job and career can be great before you really commit.
Secondly, internships can be a great way to get your foot in the door. Employers are more likely to take a risk and hire an intern rather than a full time employee, as it would definitely cost them less to lose an intern than an employee. Also, they are more likely to hire an intern they have already seen in action, rather than risk hiring a stranger they know nothing about. So, an internship could definitely act as a bridge towards that new ideal job.
Take your Time and Find your Passion
While one might feel pressured to jump immediately back into the job pool and start earning an income, you should resist. This may sound counter intuitive, but you should take some time off to actually see what is it about you current career path that is not working for you, and what is it about the new career that excites you. Search for your passion and spark that makes you go on.
Changing a career once is hard enough, you do not want to find yourself in a position where you may have to do it again. Hence, it is better to take your time now and really find your passion, rather than find yourself unsatisfied yet again down the line.
Can do spirit
Changing career is not easy. It can be successfully done, but it is not easy, which is why many people choose not to change their career even if they are unhappy in it. However, that should not be what you do for the rest of your life; which is why you need to persevere. Find what it is that is really driving you and use it to continue to search and fight for your passion. It may take some time to get there, and there will be many obstacles in your path, but if you fight through them and continue to work towards your goal, then victory will be yours; all you need is a can do spirit, because nothing in life is impossible, even though it may seem like it.