Midlife Career Change - Want to or Need To?
The midlife career change is something that is going to be facing many more people than ever before over the next 10 – 20 years. If you’ve caught any of the amazing BBC Panorama series about how the exponential growth of technology, you’ll know what I mean.
Automation is set to wipe out even more of out traditional industries and jobs than it has to date. But it’s the white collar jobs that are risk as much as blue collar work. So whilst looking for a midlife career change can be just a side effect of midlife itself, it’s more an more going to be out of necessity in years to come.
It makes sense then whether you’re seeking a midlife career change out of desire or necessity, to look for it in the digital world. After all that’s where everything is going – it’s the economy that’s thriving. The trouble is that the whole nature of employment is changing. Jobs that require ordinary or average skills levels will be automated where possible. It’s those with more specialised and creative skills who will thrive.
Up Skilling For A Mid Life Career Change
A midlife career change has always and will always require re-skilling. I would suggest that the best skills to have now are digital skills. I’m confident in saying that as many people far smarter than me are in agreement: Professors at MIT and Oxford, heads of UK and US digital skills committees, world class entrepreneurs and business leaders… But what are they?
Anything from basic computer skills to advanced internet marketing. The more advanced the better but that doesn’t necessarily mean technical. Creative, communication, teaching and digital marketing skills are already in high demand.
My own midlife career change was sort of forced upon me by redundancy. I found myself out there with a very mixed bag of skills and experience. Those don’t add up to a very “joined up” looking CV outside of the very specialised industry I’d been in – an industry in deep crisis – so no point in looking for a way back in. They did however make me a great candidate for the digital economy.
Having spent some 12 years in the audio-visual industry – from technician to business development manager – I’d been at the cutting edge of the digital revolution. I’d seen how rapidly technology was going from specialist and ultra expensive to user friendly and affordable. I’d seen the internet become more and more important as a tool for research and business.
As a business development manager there really wasn’t much need for me to be a road warrior. I could do all my prospecting and cold calling online. I’d also picked up a lot of knowledge about graphics, video editing and lighting that have proved invaluable since. So when my midlife career change was pre-empted I knew where I needed to be – self-employed and with an online business.
Midlife Career Change In A Digital World
All ages here the average being 49 (SFM and DEA Momentum Day London 19th Sept 2015[/caption] I won’t bore you with my initial experiences with franchise e-commerce webstores and various schemes and programmes. I’ve written about that elsewhere – my aim now is to point people looking to do this in the right direction, not the wrong. Suffice to say I came to realize that
- This was an amazing industry offering never before seen opportunities to all sorts of people – not just the midlife career change community.
- There’s a lot of crap out there
- I needed to invest in high quality education and re-skilling in digital marketing.
You see once you’ve mastered the basic components, strategies and systems of selling goods and services on the internet, the world really is your oyster. There are so many directions a person armed with digital marketing sills can take.
There are literally millions of products and services to promote for profit. Businesses are crying out for digital marketing and skills consultants. There is no need to commute, own products or invest in specialised equipment or premises. I think those looking for a midlife career change have a particular advantage here. They have a lot of transferable skills, experience of work and business and in most cases the modest start up funds needed.
Two years after beginning my own midlife career change I find myself able to live wherever I want, earning more than I ever did in employment and happier than I’ve ever been. It’s a combination of being fulfilled, self reliant and having a ton of time freedom. I got the education, skills and a lucrative business partnership I needed from SFM and DEA. They’ll send you a series of free videos if you click on the link below and insert your email address. Best thing I’ve ever done.