Midlife Career Changes

Midlife Career Change Reasons

The Top Career Change Triggers

In our coaching we have found that people want to make a midlife career change for very specific reasons. We have made a short list of these initial midlife career change triggers. To help you get started with a successful, safe and secure career change, please view the video below. In the video master midlife career change coach, Unre Visagie takes you through an introduction of the top reasons.

In careerdevelopmentplan.net we offer the foolproof Career Maker System, which helps people during their midlife career change. I have been there myself and so have many others around me. It takes you from the perceived box on limitations right through to a successful place where we typically see a 20 – 30% increase and we see big moves towards doing work people enjoy with confidence. We would like to see this for everybody.

I have the privilege of having lived there for almost 25 years now. Let us take a brief look at what drive these career changes. We have created a list and we ask you to please consider each item on the list below and start on the road to your successful midlife career change. Should you not find your reason for your midlife career change on this list, which is possible, please help us to help you and others by posting a comment about it and we would love to address the reason with a specific answer as soon as practical or possible. We hope that your change process could start with understanding and defining these reasons, what we call triggers that drive the need for a midlife career change. Once we have found these triggers, you can identify and design a solution that best fits your unique situation.

We have been successfully coaching people through midlife career changes for the past 30 years. In our multi-million dollar companies we were privileged to build, then through professional coaching, also pro bono work at universities, schools and in communities. The process is now really foolproof. In Career Maker Systems we see it as a bridge for people to move from triggers of discomfort and perceptions or interpretations, like being behind a glass plate. They then identify and take the right actions and they never stop moving again. We have people that we have coached for over 30 years, and it never stops.

The solution will be your identified choice of the best work, job, company and industry, to build your ideal, enjoyable career where you never have to feel that you have to work very hard a day in your life, yet you add great value with great income. That’s the goal. We have found three types, three main categories of changes:

  1. The ones that are so urgent they burn
  2. The ones that are just getting warm: “I want to change.”
  3. The ones we can see that will get warm in the future, we know change will be good.

Let us start with urgent change. This typically comes from companies that downsize and industries that change; the key thing is the job may disappear very soon. “I better make a plan before it gets too urgent.” The other way of thinking is:” I had enough of this job.”, “My job sucks.” That’s what we often think. I often found that it isn’t the job so much that sucks; it is the work that sucks. I had situations of people coming to me at work, in my companies, that say: “My husband says that if I don’t change this job soon, he is going to kick me out of here.” We went through the detail, they go back home, they tell a different story, the next day they come back and say: “The husband says I will be a fool if I leave this job.” It is merely a change in thinking.

It is often the work or the way we look at the work that sucks, but something sucks, it has to be changed. Let us look at one of the most urgent needs in our 40’s: I really must earn more money right now. It typically comes from the fact that many issues drive that change. However, what we found more often than not, people are responsible for a whole bunch of upcoming people, they are responsible for people seeing their life out, and even somewhat responsible for people in their current generation who’s not doing so well. The responsibilities at 40 and after 40 could be quite daunting. If you simply want to change because you’re not paid enough, it is often a very simple communication problem, and I like that one because it’s the quickest to address.

Another reason: people frustrate me. This can be for many reasons. Often we find that looking at things a bit differently solves this problem, but often it has gone so far that changing company, or at least changing the vision in a company is practical.

People stay in the same circumstances; mostly they just realize they are not happy, the travel bugs them, the workplace bugs them, the industry bugs them, and there are so many possibilities. They just feel they carry a very heavy weight. To get rid of this weight can be done in a number of ways. A change of company may be necessary, but often it is just a change in perception and looking at things differently.

Let us look at people who are really happy in their job, career and industry, they just need more challenges. This is also a very straightforward process, typically achieved in a few months, that usually leads to a 20 – 30% salary increase within 18 months. Making the change and communicating properly with a proper plan.

There is also the natural change; it’s just a restless feeling, I can do better, I can do more. The other one is that the job has become too easy, it’s repetitive, and repetitive is never good for us. We always say repetitive is like a groove, there’s an old adage that says the difference between a groove and a grave is just the depth. It’s like you are not alive anymore and you need to change that, you need to get out of the groove. It is simply a process that follows the same steps as the others.

In each of these cases the solution consists normally of three broad steps. We apply each of them for change, growth, issues etc. It’s to one way or another identify the root causes, prepare a lot of information and facts, think of possible alternative solutions, communicate that with the right people, and you have a fantastic solution. We find that when a man arrives with this clear insight and a clear plan, he is never refused.

Six years ago at North-West University in South Africa they couldn’t find practical work in the industry for students. Today 700 students find their own practical work simply because they know where they are going, they know why they want it, they can say why and what about a company, why and what about an industry and they talk to the right people. What makes it so exciting, about a third of them get jobs at companies that didn’t even have a position, but when they meet this enthusiastic, sorted-out person they create a job for him.

In summary, I would like to say that a career change can be an exciting experience. The Career Maker System makes it so clear and so easy. It’s not always quick, but it’s always clear and always easy. We call it a secure and safe way towards your ideal work, job, career, company and industry. I really hope you will make your choice and I hope that you will identify one of the items on the list below or please communicate with us, challenge us to see whether we can answer you. I hope one of the videos on the list below will encourage you to stay in the process, and complete it.

Midlife Career Change

We have coached many people from all walks of life through midlife career changes in different companies and in our personal career coaching practice. Eventually we came to a standard template that works for most people thinking of changing careers.

The key issue we found is that many people think they are their jobs. When asked them who they are and most people answered I am a “Doctor”, I am an “IT Professional”, or “I am a Teacher” they in some way link their person to their job or their last qualification.

The specific work you feel you can do the best or want to do the best defines who you are. For example, a project manager answered I am an accountant 20 years ago.

During a midlife career change, it is critical that you know what kind of work you want to do more of and what kind of work you want to do less of.

Exploring what you want to do less of and more of in your new career

If you are clear on exactly what you want, it becomes easy to communicate your “Career Change Message” to the right place and the right people. With a clear message, you can make smooth transition in a midlife career change. You have years of work experience and abilities and these skills are worth much to companies. Even though your current work experience might not overlap 100% with your new direction, your skills and workplace experience is still worth gold.

If you are planning a midlife career change, it is very important to get the exact job you want in the precise industry of your choice and in the geographical area, you want to work. The chances that you will make a major career change again later in your life are small, which makes the career change choices you make now incredibly important.

Remember you are the only steward of your work life, what you do and what you earn. No one else really cares.

Let us begin to get clarity on your mid life career change

First, let me ask you a very important question.

Do you believe you have a choice? It is extremely important you absolutely believe you have choices, be confident in yourself and your life experience. To make a midlife career change is a major move; you need to get your mind in the right place. Your confidence will shine though in everything you do from here on forward.

We truly live in the best time ever in access to knowledge, communication and travel resources.

Now let us follow a process to gain that critical clarity in your communication on the industry and the work you want. Clarity is vital in middle-life career changes.

  1. Which industry do you enjoy working in? Identify the products, services, development, people and the contribution you will make. Be sufficiently clear and be ready to adapt your message with input from others in friends, family and colleagues. Once you are clear on where you want to go, you must clearly communicate how the company, division, team, suppliers and clients you want to join and serve will benefit.
  2. Communicate your message to people you know and ask them to send it to people they know. Identify and engage key people in the company, team of division you want to join. Be clear how the company, division, suppliers and clients will benefit.
  3. Be visible and get involved, engage in the places and work you want to do.

About career change and resumes

Too many people hope their resumes will find work for them. Your resume is important, but it is much more important to be clear on what you want. Before you start writing your resume, get your story straight, know what kind of work you want and be 100% sure in which industry you want to work.

Notes for midlife career changers:

  • Be flexible on starting salary and expectations of compensation for work done.
  • Communicate the work you did before, during and after the tasks above.

Useful tools for career changes:

  • Do a sweep of what you know and who you know.
  • Do a sweep of what is in your diary that does not belong there and say no to the things that does not move you forward.
  • Search for what should be in your diary and schedule it.