Top tips for a midlife career change

In the past, if a career didn’t match your CV, you could forget about making a switch, but the workplace is opening up – fast.

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Social networking allows you to explore routes you wouldn’t otherwise have known about. Research suggests that you are five times more likely to find a job through your network than via a traditional recruiter.

According to a survey by ­, almost half of would-be-career-changers though, are too afraid of failure and the unknown to make the jump. But you need to make sure you don’t get in your own way.You have all the tools and capabilities, so don’t let the dreaded impostor syndrome kick. Age anxiety may be your biggest hurdle if you’re considering a career change in your 40 somethings.

But think about it – the older you are, the more mature your network and tools such as LinkedIn ensure that the barriers that used to block you from direct ­access to people have gone.

Even if you’ve reached your 60s, it’s not too late to change or revive your career; The Prince’s Responsible Business Network is calling on businesses to increase the number of workers aged 50 to 69 by 12 per cent by 2022.

It’s not true that the easiest way to change careers is to set up your own business and run it from home. For you it maybe key to be part of a team, with challenging and interesting work, a meaningful salary and greater job ­satisfaction.

For career switchers, job satisfaction tends to be less about money, status and prestige and more about personal fulfillment, – People want to feel that they are contributing to something larger than themselves

The job for life mentality is over. If you are willing to put yourself out, there is every chance you can switch to a more fulfilling occupation. New markets, job types and ways of working ­can help you to change direction – and feel seen, heard and valued. Life’s too short to be unhappy!!

Top Tips to get you going

Nurture your confidence.
Attend coaching and seminars, meet up with former colleagues, be proactive in taking control of your destiny. Follow industry blogs and Thought Leaders on Twitter and LinkedIn and check out businesses that appeal. Believe in yourself!

Not in the traditional hand shaking, back patting and guffawing a lot way, but by developing meaningful relationships. Explore LinkedIn and target people in a focused way – It’s very rare to get a dream job without networking. Remember, also, to use a professional portrait on LinkedIn not one of you falling over drunk on a hen do!


That it’s OK not to know where you want to end up when you start out. There’s no shame in knowing your current career is wrong but feeling unsure about your next step.

Have a plan

Brainstorm new career paths and group them into categories. This will give structure to your job search

Be realistic

Unless you are seriously going to retrain or already are one – don’t set your stall out to be a brain surgeon in a years time!! Its not very likely to happen. But maybe retrain and do head massage?

Work out your priorities

…and the deal-breakers. This will help you to narrow down the field. Make sure that salary is a consideration because at the end of the day you’ve got to make money so you can eat and live life to the fullest!!

Consult an expert

Online careers tests can point you in the right direction but a one to one session with a career coach can really help and they will provide more bespoke advice. Think about doing your MBTI personality test too – it can help point you in the right direction of roles your personality type typically may like

Find a support team

Surrounding yourself with other career changers, trusted family and friends, experts and mentors can help you maintain inspiration and think big. Make sure you have a strong backing mentally and financially if you decide to set up your own venture!!


Fixate on one company or job
Don’t keep banging your head against an apple tree expecting it to give oranges. Go to a different tree

Mistake flexible working for part-time
Flexible or home working is a more blended approach to work; you deliver the same objectives in an adjusted work pattern. Remember also that some roles have to be undertaken in a regulated environment with an audit channel, making home working impossible.

Consider yourself above work experience
Before you quit your current job, test out possible careers by shadowing or working for free. Retrain whilst you are still in your current role, and test out your possibilities.

Take rejection personally
The biggest risk with this is that you become demotivated and give up. If someting goes wrong, adapt your strategy, compromise and try to see setbacks as learnings to move your forwards. Don’t forget to use your support team they are great when the proverbial hits the fan!

Here’s a few ideas for starting over

Start your own business
Would-be entrepreneurs wanting to start their own business can apply for a Government Start Up Loan, which could provide £500-£25,000, support and guidance on writing a business plan, and successful applicants get 12 months of free mentoring.

Explore the public sector
The public sector has been quick to adapt to flexible working patterns and offers training, stablility and the chance to make a difference. provides information on the various roles, salaries and potential career paths.

Try teaching…
Substantial tax-free bursaries and scholarships of up to £30k for those who train to teach core academic subjects. With three of more years’ work experience and a degree, you can apply for the employment-based School Direct (salaried) route where you will be employed by a school and work towards qualified teacher status (QTS) at the same time. See

What about Coaching? provides accredited courses for coaches, mentors and trainers; offers life coach training days and offers a range of business coaching progammes.

Move into the wellness sector

A growth area from mental health, mindfulness and nutrition to personal training and massage. Its a huge list and there is plenty of growth in this marketplace yet. Think about the more mature en of the market where the disposable incomes rae greater and the size of the market growing. So you wont need to be some super fit young gym bunny to teach.

Write a Book or start training

Whilst a bit obvious if you are good at something write about it or share your experience with others through training courses either online or face to face. Its all the rage and a fast growing sector. Udemy and other online platforms are great places to start either to get great value training courses or to create your own.

Or write your very own book and self publish on Amazon. This has been the path to success for a few big names of today.

So what are you going to do next? If you need any help – get in touch and we can take you on your very own journey to fulfilment!

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