Perhaps your current job is leaving you feeling unsatisfied, tired and bored. Perhaps the shifting market has turned your previous career into a dead end. Whatever the reasons may be, you’re looking at a midlife career change.
It’s always an intimidating prospect to undertake, especially if your desire to change careers is not rooted in an actual financial need. What if you end up throwing away a stable job to engage on a path that leads to nothing but failure? What if you end up letting your spouse and your children down?
These are understandable concerns, but carefully planning your career change can help you alleviate some of them. Read on to discover some tips that will help guide your new choice of career.
- Take tests to assess your skills and interests. If you know you want to switch jobs, but are not quite sure what to switch to, you might want to take some tests and questionnaires to determine what career would be right for you. Some of these tests are freely available online, others may require you to pay a fee. Even if you already know which job you want to pursue, it’s still a good idea to take these tests just to make sure your skillset and your personality is really compatible with this type of work.
- Research the market. Nowadays, there are many tools available to test the viability of your new occupation within the current state of the market. Just like the tests described above, they are not flawless, but they can help provide a general picture of your chances. It may be the job of your dreams, but if it has a high unemployment rate, you may want to reconsider.
- Remember that “a job is a job-title in a field,” in the words of Richard Bolles, author of bestselling job-hunting book What Color is your Parachute?For instance, if you were a medical writer, you would be best off to start looking for either a job in the medical field or a job as a writer in a different field. This way, you can say in your CV and your interviews that you do have prior experience in the domain.
- Think about your transferable skills.You’re trying to find a specific type of work, but you’ve never done that type of work before? You might get hired if you have acquired the appropriate transferable skills. Leadership, time-management, communication – insist on anything that was required of you at your previous position and might come in handy at your new one.
- Don’t let fear hold you back. No risk, no reward. No guts, no glory. Toiling away at a job that leaves you unhappy and unsatisfied is no good for your emotional state. As long as you have realistic (but not pessimistic) expectations and plan your career change well, you are likely to succeed if you just try!
If you’re still worried, you can always talk to a professional about your concerns. A life coach or a local psychologist in the West Island will help you set your goals, identify possibilities, provide tests and overall ease you into making your decision.