How to start your midlife career change

There are a lot of reasons you might decide to change careers. Sometimes, a career change is forced as companies downsize and roles are made redundant. Sometimes, change is voluntary. It’s not uncommon to dread weekdays, but when you start to feel emotionally and mentally drained by your work, it may be time to move on.

If for any reason you’re considering a new career, here are some things to keep in mind as you explore new career paths.

1. Look for flexible work

There are only so many hours in a day, and as we get older, we face new responsibilities that often take precedence over our work. Daily commutes, office-hours and overtime all eat into what time is left to us at the end of each day.

Work doesn’t have to be a limiting factor in your life however, an increasing number of older works are making the move to ‘flexible work.’

Flexible work includes high-paying part-time jobs such as a librarians, nurses and dental hygienists, to jobs that allow you to work remotely from home.

There is also a growing market for freelancers if you have experience in a creative role and want to take a gamble. Freelance work has been popular among students and industry veterans for several years now. You need have to the confidence necessary to build your own portfolio of clients and market your skills. Freelance work is risky but can be a very rewarding alternative to traditional office-based or part-time roles.  

2. Experience beats age

Sad as it is, ageism and bias against older workers persists to this day. Several industries (specifically the security and retail industry) make it very hard for older workers to secure and maintain roles.

The good news is, your skills, flexibility and knowledge are the perfect tools to negotiate any barriers that age present in you search for a new career. Those working in consultancy, legal and medical roles face little to no negative bias as a result of their age.

If you think your age might a limiting factor in tour job search, consider how you might take your skills to an industry where age is seen as a positive marker rather than a negative trait.

3. Easy upskilling

An increasing number of roles require formal education such as a bachelor’s degree or higher. If you think your lack of education might make it hard to move to a new career, consider investing in online courses.

There are thousands of certified courses available to take online. These range from courses that teach very broad subjects and can help improve your numeracy and literary skills, to very focused courses in data science or human resources.

Whatever your choice, it’s never too late to learn a new skill. If you need a place to start, consider a LinkedIn training courses.