Article by Keren Smedley
Many of us get caught up with concerns about our age and these block us from getting what we want. We fall into the trap of believing we’re too old to get the jobs we want, that no-one will want to employ someone who’s had a career break, or just want to change jobs.
It’s easy to get caught up in what we don’t think we can do rather than what we can do. Below is a four-stage plan.
Follow this and that dream job could be yours!
- You know your abilities and qualities so you know exactly what you can offer and at what level. But where do you want to do it? Your first task is to put your attributes into priority order. Which ones are the most important to you? If you’re stuck, remind yourself of the times you’ve enjoyed. What made the events so enjoyable? List those attributes at the top. Also think about the things you don’t like in your job or in other parts of your life. You want to find a job with as few of these as possible.
- If you want to move into a new field of work, you’ll need to be able to show that you have the relevant competence to undertake the tasks you’ll have to tackle and evidence to prove your capabilities. Preparation is the key so take your skills and think of examples where you’ve used them and what you achieved.
- Next, you need to identify what you want to do. This is your opportunity to pursue them.
- Make a list of your interests – fishing, baking, fashion, animals and so on. Brainstorm all the possible careers where these interests could be pursued. You should now have a list of possible new careers. While doing this, think (as they say) out of the box – in other words, think more broadly than you normally would. Don’t restrict yourself, even if your ideas at present seem a bit implausible.
- The next and final stage is now to go and get the ideal job that uses your skills and meets your desires. You’ve probably got a lot of possible avenues in front of you, which need to be prioritised. Some may be areas you know little about so do some research. Make an appointment to talk to someone in that field. Find out everything you can so you can make an informed choice. Ask if you can do a day’s work shadowing. Or you could call someone in the field for a chat and ask to pick their brains. Being consulted as an expert is something we all love!
- Having gathered all the information, you’re ready to decide where you want to focus your attention and what kind of post you want to apply for. Armed with all this knowledge about yourself, your skills and the post, you’ll be very desirable to any employer.
- The next step is to write a CV and fill in the application form. If this isn’t something you’ve done recently you may need some help. See my website www.experiencematters.org.uk where you can get some information and help with this stage.