Making a Career Change Late in Life
People push through the work week just to have a sweet
relief of not working for two days. That means people are living their life for about 30% of the time.
There’s an overused quote that says, “do what you love, and
you’ll never work a day.” Although not entirely true because every job has its stressful
times, it does encourage finding something that makes you happy. Going to work
everyday and being miserable isn’t healthy for anyone or the people around him/her.
It’s never too late to stop, reevaluate what your doing, and go in a different direction.
Here are 4 tips on making a late career change worth it.
Evaluate your natural skills and abilities. What do you do for a hobby? What do you enjoy researching? Before you make your next move, evaluate what makes you happy and how you can turn it into a different career. For example, do you find you’re always lending a helping hand and ear to anyone that needs it? Try working as a counselor or for a nonprofit. Have you always loved children or animals? Check out working for a day care, an animal rescue, or vet’s office.
Starting from scratch is hard when you have a life and bills surrounding you. First, make a plan. Create a new budget, a savings plan, and cut out unnecessary spending. When starting an entry level position with little to no experience, you’re going to be offered beginners pay. Remain flexible about the salary you’re being offered, but don’t drown yourself in debt trying. If they can’t match you in necessary pay, what else would help? Extra PTO? Benefits? Employee review program with opportunities for raises?
Having to go back to school isn’t the only option when starting over. Although sometimes required, there are other avenues to pursue when deciding to change careers. Many jobs you can start a career after getting certifications. For example, there are a plethora of marketing certifications to give you a leg up against other interviewees that have degrees. Some jobs even have on the job training for people just starting out. Highlight any transferable skills from your previous career path to your new one. Switching from marketing to PR? What communications assets could you bring to the table?
Finally, use the network you’ve built over time. Start reaching out to people you’ve made connections with throughout your professional career. Someone may know someone who has an opening, an internship, or even just a foot in the door.
Stop living your life for the weekends. Whether you’re 30,
50, 70, etc., embrace what makes you happy.