Is it time to make a change in your life?
Gone are the days when having a career meant committing to the same job with the same company for 35 years.
These days we’re much more open to changing our careers, both in terms of who we work for, and the industry we work in.
This change has been predominately driven by younger generations; in fact a report from Gallop conducted in the US in 2016 found that 21% of millennials say they’ve changed jobs within the past year, which is more than three times the number of non-millennials who report the same.
However, millenials aren’t the only ones looking for a sea change, it appears older workers are catching the bug as well.
So, if you’re in the later stages of your career and you’ve decided to make a change, here are some of the things you can do.
You could start your own business
As we get older, and our wealth and assets build up, many of us think about pursuing that dream of starting a business.
Why not, right?
You know your skill set, you know what clients you need to talk to and you’ve got the skills to build the relationships. Plus the capital is available.
From 2006 to 2011, there were 30 per cent more 60-74 year old owner managers working in their own businesses in Australia, according to a report commissioned by NBN. There were also 212,660 owner managers aged 50-54 in Australia in 2011, up 3526 from five years earlier.
It seems like an obvious solution for anyone looking to change tact, however, it also means that there is a lot at stake should anything go wrong.
My tip – If you’re thinking about starting a business later in life, why not test the waters first? Start your new business idea out as a hobby, that way you’ll get to learn the market and test the waters but with less risk involved. You can also see if the dream is all it’s cracked up to be.
Setting up a business
If you want to start your business, make sure you get the basics right:
- Get your finances in order first. More than 80 per cent of new business failures are due to cash flow issues, so make sure you know where the money is going to come from. Whether it’s planning to borrow against equity in your house, take out a business loan from the bank or use your savings – make sure there’s money in the coffers.
- Write a business plan. It sounds simple, but you’d be surprised how many entrepreneurs start without a proper plan. Your plan should be the tool that helps you understand how your business is put together. It should be there to help you monitor growth, hold yourself accountable to your goals and also to measure the businesses success.
- Work out your pricing. This could make or break the business as charging too much and you won’t keep customers, charge too little and the business won’t make enough money.
There are also a number of helpful websites you can visit:
You could try a free online course to broaden your skillset
Sometimes we don’t have to take the giant leap of starting a new business, a much smaller step, like learning about a new field or industry could provide the change we’re looking for.
Coursera is a great place to start. It’s an online learning platform that offers a range of short courses that are facilitated by different universities around the world. Many of the courses are free, or only have a small fee to pay for the certificate at the end. Then, for the book worms amongst all of us, there’s a subscription service where you can access as many of the online courses as you can for a monthly fee.
For those that want something closer to home, there are also a number of courses you can do through sites like SEEK Learning, or Open Learning.
It doesn’t just have to be a career change
Remember that not all change needs to happen in the work place. Sometimes we’re looking for change outside of work as well. Studies have found that having a hobby, or passion outside of work can help boost cognitive ability. They also help us meet new people, build networks and make new friends. But the most important thing about having a hobby is that is helps the body release eustress, which is the good stress that makes us feel excited about life.