Can I Make a Career Change in My 40s?

Posted on Thursday, November 25, 2021 by The Career GuideNo comments

Are you thinking about changing your career? If so, you’re far from alone—even before Covid, 47% of us wanted to change careers. For example, more people are moving into office support jobs from retail and hospitality. The pandemic has shifted lots of people’s career trajectories and now is a great time to work on making that change. Here are our five top tips to make it easier:

1. Ditch the excuses

Everyone tells you that your 20s are when you should figure everything out and that once you’re on a career path you should stay put. That’s simply not true, especially today. You should expect to have, on average, 12 different jobs in your working life. 

Your first step to change is to stop telling yourself it’s not possible. It’s not too late. The benefits are likely to be enormous. So recognise that there will never be a perfect moment and stop procrastinating.

2. Get some experience

When we chat to career changers about what’s holding them back, they often list experience as the big issue. There’s one very easy and simple way to gain the experience you need: temping. Temporary jobs in London effectively allow you to “try before you buy”. 

You can quickly see how well the new career suits you, and build your confidence and experience at the same time.

3. Be brave!

Fortune favours the bold! Yes, it’s daunting to change careers and leave the security of what you know. However, fear of failure and the unknown can hold you back from a better future. Taking a chance is challenging, but it can unleash passion, purpose, greater well-being, and maybe even more financial comfort. Staying in a career that you no longer love is soul-destroying, so be brave and create a better future.

4. Use the experience you have

Few jobs have absolutely no crossover in terms of required skills. Don’t underestimate the value of what you’ve already obtained. You’ve got a ton of relevant experience; it’s just about how you frame it. Your experience demonstrates things such as your credibility, flexibility, and affinity for teamwork and collaboration. The trick comes in quantifying your achievements and demonstrating how they are still relevant. 

As you prepare your CV, look at adverts for roles that you are interested in. Identify the skills they are looking for and consider how you already have them in a different form. Then reframe it.

5. Use your network

Don’t turn your back on your old career while burning bridges in your wake. Instead, acknowledge what it can still offer you. Most importantly, chances are that you’ve got a diverse and valuable network that could come in handy. Nurture it and use it to launch your new career. Identify those who are successful in your new area and create a support squad.

Changing your career in your 40s doesn’t need to be improbable. Make plans, take a leap, and be grateful not to have left it any longer.


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