Jeff York liked his job as a creative director for a marketing firm, but he wasn’t loving it anymore. “I wanted to find something for the next 30 years that I would love doing,” Jeff recalls.
When Michelle Comella was laid off from her job as an investment banker, “I recognized this change as an opportunity to ascertain whether it was time for me to pursue a new career.”
For Betsy Tilkemeier, who had always worked in the corporate world, “staying the course, sticking things out, was really all I knew.” She loved the work she was doing, “but I loathed the environment I was in … My health wasn’t great and my attitude was even worse.”
What all three of these people have in common is that they made a major career change in midlife, finding the right job with the help of a career coach.
If you’re like the majority of Americans, you wish you had chosen a different career path. According to a University of Phoenix survey, more than half of working adults are interested in changing careers and nearly three-quarters are not in the career they planned when they were younger. “Choosing one career path after high school or college and sticking with it for the rest of a career is becoming less common as the pace of business and technology quickly change jobs and industries,” said Dr. Bill Pepicello, president of the University of Phoenix, in explaining the results.
The survey showed that only 14 percent of U.S. workers believe they are in their dream careers. In fact, nearly 80 percent of workers in their 20s said they wanted to change careers, followed by 64 percent of 30-somethings, 54 percent in their 40s and 51 percent in their 50s.
Among the barriers they cited that prevented them from changing careers, 40 percent reported uncertainty around which career to choose, 32 percent feared the unknown and 31 percent considered themselves too old or too advanced in their current position.
Here’s the good news: If you are interested in shifting careers, no matter what your age or background, a career coach can help you gain knowledge and clarity about yourself that will empower you to find the right job – one that is better aligned with your talents, values and passions, and one that brings you greater meaning and fulfillment.
Choosing the right career is one of the most important decisions you will make in your lifetime – in large part because spending your days in an environment that fuels you, rather than depletes you, can have a dramatically positive impact on your health, stress level, personal relationships and more.
Making a career change at any point in your life – whether it’s in your 30s or your 60s – can be intimidating, but it’s never too late to find the right job.
If you could start over, what career would you choose?