During your career you’re likely to face significant changes.
Whether those changes are brought on by outside influences (think the recession of 2008), or changes are self related (burnout, the desire to move into another industry, being laid off, etc), career changes aren’t a matter of if, but when.
The average number of jobs the average professional is likely to have during their career is around a dozen.
In other words, never get too comfortable. Change can be hard. Change can be good. Change can mean a variety of things.
But change remains constant.
Regardless of if you’re one year, several years, or decades into your career, it’s never been more expected or accepted for professionals to make career changes at any given chapter.
If you’re thinking you’ve missed your boat to make a career pivot, read here:
It’s never too late to make a career change.
The professional environment that we currently live in is a frantically evolving landscape, and with that evolution there will always be new arising opportunities. Infact it’s not uncommon to find scenarios where the workforce has to catch up with fresh technology to make the desired impacts to the marketplace.
Think of commercial space flight as an example. Just a decade ago, the thought of taking civilians into space outside of a scifi novel was unheard of. Now, behind the vision and execution of leaders like Jeff Bezos and Elon Musk, commercial space flight has become a reality in our present day. What was once only a dream for anyone not a NASA Astronaut, can now be a reality. Commercial space travel has opened a new door for anyone willing to pay to experience reaching outer space inside of a rocket. Behind that, the model has opened doors to new technology and approaches to science, which in turn have created jobs which never existed before.
To summarize, if you’ve ever wanted to become a rocket scientist there’s never been a better time to do so.
Whether your dream is to become that rocket scientist, or to shift gears into countless other industries, we have a few suggestions you should take into account as you plan a career transition.
- Focus on Passion:
No matter your career chapter, approach your career pivots with a marathon mindset instead of a sprint. While many professionals focus on how to make the quick buck, wise professionals will identify a passion, and begin building there.
Earnings potential will always be far greater for somebody who enjoys their craft.
Remember the sound advice from Mark Twain, “Find a job you enjoy doing, and you will never have to work a day in your life.”
- Rely on Past Successes:
Shifting into a new career can be an overwhelming experience. But don’t make it harder than it needs to be.
Even if your occupation goal looks nothing like your current role, there are likely to be overlaps somewhere. Focus on the transferable skills you may bring into a new role and use those overlaps as a foundation for establishing immediate impact in your new role.
Isaac Marion, an American writer aptly stated, “Every experience, good or bad, is a priceless collector’s item.” Don’t overlook your previous experiences as irrelevant. It rarely is.
- Draw Knowledge from a Mentor:
Have you ever spoken with somebody who has already traveled to a destination you’ve been wanting to visit? Hearing their experiences and learning specifics about what they gleaned can serve invaluable as you prepare for your own trip.
This is often the same inside work environments. By tapping into the wisdom and experience of a mentor who has gone before, you can speed up your learning curve substantially. You’ll be able to steer clear of unnecessary challenges, receive stronger direction, and feel more clarity by drawing their experiences.
A valuable mentor can serve as a cheat code for your career. Whether that’s in illuminating the path ahead, or helping you to realize your own unique capabilities. Drawing upon the value of a mentor can make a resounding difference in your ability to achieve.
Whatever the reasoning behind a career move, or whatever your desired position looks like, approach your career pivot with confidence. Your age shouldn’t be the driving consideration if or not you decide to make a change. Afterall, it has far less relevance than it once did.
Rather than focusing on perceived limitations or outside challenges, focus instead on your own unique value. English writer, Neil Gaiman said this “The one thing that you have that nobody else has is you. Your voice, your mind, your story, your vision. So write and draw and build and play and dance and live as only you can.”
The world makes way for the person who knows where they are headed.
Seek opportunities to transition into the types of roles you believe you can make a meaningful difference within.
Draw upon your past experiences, because they have value.
Rely upon the wisdom of mentors who have gone before, they will make your journey easier.
Finally, don’t give too much consideration to age. It’s just a number.
By following these three steps, you’re all set for blast off (or whatever environment you’re seeking).