Friday, July 22, 2005

Why People Change Careers

Changing careers is a major step, so most people won't change unless there is something really pushing them to do so. Here are some major reasons people make a career change:
  • They are fired from their current job. There can be all kinds of reasons for the firing, from poor performance to personality clashes.
  • They are laid off in a reduction in force. Their job has gone away. This is actually the most common reason I have seen in the last few years. Layoffs are common, and this one is one of the more recent to be announced. A person who is laid off may be able to find a similar position with another company, or they may have to make a significant career change to be employable -- i.e., that job with that company may have gone away, or most jobs of that type have gone away.
  • They have been pushed into retirement. The average first retirement age in America is around 57 , due to companies favoring offering early retirement as a way of reducing payroll. Many, maybe even most, are not ready not to work. They may be able to find a similar position in another company, may decide to consult, or may make a significant career change to do something they've always really wanted to do, even start their own business.
  • They dislike their job and decide to change careers to find increased job satisfaction, more income, better life balance, or any number of other goals.
  • They choose to retire to have a more balanced life, but want to work because they enjoy work and it's important to them.
  • They want to do something that makes a difference. It's not that they don't like their current career, but it's no longer focused on what's really important to them. Increasingly, we see people choosing this option and entering the nonprofit world, or becoming a teacher, or becoming a minister.
No matter why people make career changes, there are steps that all go through in making the transition. That's what this blog is about: how to change careers successfully.

Welcome to the "Making Career Changes" blog (with some planned podcasts as well)


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