Deciding to change careers is a personal decision, and should be made with a lot of consideration to the pluses and minuses with making the change. However, sometimes we are forced into a career change because we cannot find anyone that wants what we can provide.
First I want to make clear I am not talking about changing jobs, but leaving the profession you have worked in for years for a completely new profession. As an example, I started in my late teens working in retail for a few years and then switched into banking for another dozen years. I then found myself in the training profession working at a bank, but was told I had really changed my profession from banking to training. For the past 25 years I have worked in every corner of the training profession, loving everything about it.
Now, I find myself being told that I am either more experienced than a company wants or they see a need for. After 25 years I am finding myself in the unique role of being too qualified for my own good. My closest mentors tell me it is time to change careers and do something different. Can I do this? Sure I can. Do I want to leave my profession? No I really don’t. So I feel like I’m being forced to consider other careers just to remain productive.
When I first got into training, I was told by someone that was retiring from our office that after a career in sales that lasted 30 years, she found herself in training. She said that for the past 10 years it the best job she ever had because she found her true calling. Yet she said, most of our adult lives the reason we work is for the opportunity to make money, and if we are able to do what really calls to us at the same time, then we should consider our self lucky.
For the past 25 years I have been lucky. I’d like to work for another 10 years primarily because I want to be engaged. The training world has always provided me an engaging environment and so it has been a struggle to leave it for something else. Have I reached the end of the career that both paid me and called to me? And if I have, what should I do next?
If you have ever felt forced to change careers, I know I would value your comments and suggestions, and I know I’m not the only one that would.