Am I Too Old To Change Careers? Career Change At 30 & Career Change At 40
“Career change at 30” and “career change at 40″ are some of the most searched keyword phrases on Google. And if you are reading this, I bet you’ve probably also been wondering if YOU are too old to change career (though your “number” might be different). Most of my career change clients range in age from late twenties to late forties, so I get asked this question all the time!
(Click below to watch the video version – Otherwise read on further down)
Whether you are too old to change careers or not to a large extent depends on who you ask, their industry, unique company culture and employee pool demographic.
For some the answer is “yes” and for some the answer is “no” – That’s why it’s incredibly important that you select the right people and companies to approach when it comes to that key career change job.
However, there are lots of factors you ARE able to control. Such as making sure you clearly showcase just how relevant and desirable your unique personality, skills and background are (instead of expecting them to somehow figure it out).
Or even better, choose to bypass the gatekeepers by starting your own company instead as the perfect vehicle for your career change.
Let’s Get Practical!
And talk about how to approach the job hunting stage of your career change process (once you are clear about your selling points, what you want and have built up some credibility);
Make sure you undertake an ACTIVE job hunt, as opposed to a PASSIVE job hunt (which is where many people fail!).
Passive job hunt is when you are literally doing everything from behind your computer. You are sending off standard CVs, applying for jobs and passively “connecting” with people online. And hope they will somehow connect the dots for you.
Active job hunting is where you are focused on being “out there” building relationships in person (social events, industry events, bloggers meet up etc.) and becoming known. The time you do spend on the computer leaves a trail of clear two –way communication; replying to tweets, getting an actual conversation going on facebook or via email etc. This is the true meaning of networking.
It’s also key that you create highly marketable and relevant “marketing documents” and leave virtual breadcrumbs showcasing your key selling points – A killer CV, keyword-rich LinkedIn profile AND use social media to research, identify and get in front of the right people and organisations. Those people, industries and companies that don’t just consist purely of 20-somethings and have a mixed demographic workforce – or even just the odd one out! Often new companies or industries in growth mode are keen on people who are not just one trick ponies or too inexperienced in the world of work and business. LinkedIn is great for this kind of research too!
How about bypassing the gatekeepers? Start Your Own Business!
I’m passionate about entrepreneurship and helping my clients get clear on what they really want and then create their own company as the perfect vehicle for getting it, as opposed to waiting for someone to “pick them.”
Interestingly, research from both Kingston University and Harvard Business School points out the older you get, the more successful you are likely to be as an entrepreneur – So this might just the answer for you!
Yes, there will be instances where you will be deemed “too old” – particularly if you are looking to become a club promoter or a Victoria’s Secret model or when a particular company is not willing to “take a risk” with you. However, that shouldn’t be an excuse for you not to hunt down or create all the many other opportunities open to you!
Think about it this way, it’s only too late if you don’t start now! For most people that’s really the issue – that they never start or fully engage with their career change project – which is never a matter of age!
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