Earlier tonight I received a comment on the Oracle Recruitment Blog that reminded me of a statistic that I heard a while back. The statistic reflected the change in our views towards work and showed how while people in past generations would stay in one role for their working career – now with so much choice people not only change jobs often but also change careers 4-5 times in their working life.
To differentiate between a job change and a career change: when I say job change this could be an IT Sales person moving from one IT Sales role to another IT Sales role. A Career change for example would be that same IT Sales person moving from IT Sales to something outside the scope of their industry – maybe to something like an Engineer or Scuba Dive Instructor.
The reason for Career changes can be as varied as the people who make them. Someone’s motivation could be to pursue a passion or maybe there is a change in their personal circumstances forcing the change or it could be any other number of reasons. I think it takes courage to make a Career change – it can be easy to stay in your comfort zone and do what you know, but to really push yourself sometimes you need to try something new, it is a matter of making that career transition as smooth as possible for yourself.
The comment that was posted is here below (thanks Dean for the kind words they are appreciated).
I just wanted to let you know that I work for a company called
Milestone Search in Melbourne, Victoria Australia. (www.mstone.com.au)
We subscribe to your feed on a daily basis and find your blogs both
interesting and insightful. Not to mention extremely entertaining. I
wonder if you have missed out on getting in journalism as this seems to
be something you’d be great at ?: )
Anyways back to my point about changing careers. This could be anything from going from I.T. to Journalism, Engineering to Teaching or any combination of career you can think of. I don’t think there ever has been a time where we have had so many opportunities to do so many different things in our working life. While this idea sounds great in theory, putting it into practice would be much harder to do I think.
First, in an increasingly competitive job market, employers tend to look for specialists in their field. You may want to make a change but your options may be limited by the number of employers willing to take a chance on someone new to an industry that will likely require a significant investment in time to get brought up to speed.
Also, using myself as an example if I was given the opportunity to move into Journalism/Communication/Marketing career from my career as an IT Recruiter – realistically I would have to take a significant pay cut to make this change as my current salary reflects the expertise I have in my current career. I would not immediately be up to speed moving into a new career and would not be able to justify a similar salary. Yes there are transferable skills in any career change, but even though you may have transferable skills you must realise that you will also have a large amount of learning to do which would take time.
These are two initial hurdles that I immediately think of, there may be more but nothing is insurmountable. If you work out what you want to do with your working career whatever that may be, you then need to just need to work out the steps to get to your end goal. This is where utilising the power of your networks and using Social Media can come in handy. If you are interested in working somewhere why not proactively take the opportunity to research the industry or company – find out who it is you need to speak to and get in touch with them.
We spend so much time working, we should enjoy the work we do and not be afraid to try new things. Waiting for your dream job to fall into your lap or be handed to you on a silver platter is not likely going to happen, so if there is something you do want to do, work out a plan to make it happen and chase after it.
P.S. – If anyone is looking for a writer – feel free to ping me a message 😉