Sunday, August 25, 2013

40’s – 50’s – 60’s – Don’t Know What to do next? Lost that passion?

“If there is no passion in your life, then have you really lived? Find your passion, whatever it may be. Become it, and let it become you and you will find great things happen FOR you, TO you and BECAUSE of you”. – Alan Armstrong

If you have passion for what you do, your day will not seem like work at all. Sadly, most do not and we have a sort of epidemic in our nation today – an epidemic of a disengaged workforce who are not passionate about the work they do. In fact, recent studies point to 71% of workers being not engaged in the work they perform, and therefore, not happy in their career.

At the same time, the job market is changing.  People are now faced with making career choice decisions that their parents never were faced with. It is referred to as re-careering or more simply, making a late –career-stage change. For some, this strikes fear – but it should not.

Re-careering is really a new buzz word for career change. What’s different is the type of careers people are opting for, the number of career changes one undergoes, the process and the "new terms" people want to work with -- their own terms this time.

Oftentimes re-careering is connected to baby boomers who seek new work options after a successful career in a job or industry. Other times we hear of people who have spent 10-15-20 years in one job and just want a new and complete change. Some have owned businesses and sold or closed them, and seek a new opportunity.

Still others are faced with a career “defining moment” – their industry is impacted by changing or advancing technology, competition, corporate downsizing or other career-defining moments (when one’s career direction or job undergoes change --  normally not on their terms). For others, a career-defining moment may be changes in their company, their relationship to their boss or a change in their lifestyle (elder care needs, physical requirements et al).
Many others just lose their passion in what they have been doing. What was fulfilling is no longer. The job becomes work – not delivering value any longer. When devoid of passion for what you do, you go through the motions – growth stops.

Changing Generations
Older generations likely worked in one job or industry for their entire career and then retired. Changing careers was frowned upon. When I told my father-in-law that I was leaving my job to open my own business -- with no income or clients -- he thought I was nuts (he did come around and was so helpful and supportive).

The millenniums, X, Y, and boomer generations are different. We will change-it-up when feeling discontented, bored or "been there, done that.” It is not unusual to undergo two-three-four re-careers -- or reinventions over the course of one’s  working life. We seek work that is on our terms -- that provides the right setting,  interaction with people, rewards and opportunities that fit interests, personality and values.

It has been said many times and is so true -- people fail in jobs or careers not because they cannot do the job, but rather, the job or career just doesn't "fit" them (more about fit further on). If you are feeling this way, it is time to re-career and reinvent yourself.

Taking the first step toward Re-Careering
Once you have made the decision to seek a new direction and change (the most difficult hurdle as most people are fearful of failing in a new career --- and that can be immobilizing) you are ready for the first step and seeking the answer to the most difficult question:

What do I want to do next, or
What do I want to be when I “grow up” …

This is the most difficult step -- discovering what you want to do next in your career, and many turn to career transition specialists to help with this critical assessment. Others opt to do it on their own using web-based sources or other tools.

Successful career matching is found by evaluating four factors: Personality, Interest, Temperament and of course, Reality of your situation which includes skills, education, income requirements, geography etc. With an understanding of the four critical factors, you can be matched against successful career profiles to find the ideal matches that “fit” you. You may have heard in the past “square peg in a round hole” when describing a co-worker or someone that just didn’t make it in a job. It’s not that they were a bad person – they just didn’t fit the job, career or maybe the company.

Follow you passion
But that is just the beginning – discovering what you are passionate about is just as critical. You may be passionate about helping others – or giving back to the community – or want to turn a hobby or interest into a career --- follow your passion and truly enjoy what you do. It has been said many times – if you follow your passion, you will never “work” another day in your life.

Do not fear re-careering or career change. Embrace it as a new beginning and new opportunity to do what you want, on your terms and for your benefit. It’s not selfish – it is just the right thing to do for yourself, your family and those you associate with.

Change it up! Find your passion! And thank you for reading this. - Dan
Dan Moran
President & Founder
Next-Act
Career Management & Transition Specialists
125 Wolf Road, Suite #128
Albany, NY 12205
Cell: 518-641-8968
eFax: 586-279-4212
dmoran@next-act.com

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