Once upon a time it was perfectly normal for a person to finish school, then train in a trade or profession, maybe do some TAFE Courses, and then to work in that sector for their entire working career until retirement.

You got the whole ‘gold watch and a handshake’ kind of deal, and then you were out the door to pave the way for a new generation of up-and-comers.

Times, of course, are changing, and now it’s actually incredibly common for people to not only have many different jobs and roles today, but to change their skills and career path entirely.

Many people are flying in the face of traditional roles as well, and are adopting a new way of approaching the working week in an unconventional way.

As a result of this, many people are now changing careers midway through their twenties, thirties and beyond. It makes sense that you wouldn’t perform such a huge undertaking without following some kind of preparation first, so we’ve created a handy list of some steps that you can follow if you’re thinking about changing careers.

  1. Do your research. If you’re unsure about what you want to shift careers to but know you want to change, then consider chatting to some people who might be in your industry already, and find out exactly what the role is like. This kind of in-depth approach will allow you to find out the nitty-gritty components of a new role that you just aren’t going to discover at university or at a training course. It may impact on your decision making as well.
  1. Re-skill if you need to. It may be the case that you simply have to retrain or reskill as a means of getting your new chosen career or job. If this is the case, see if you can work the new training and up-skilling either into your current role, or around your working hours. That way you can simply slip over to your new role with as little disturbance as possible.
  1. Consult with some experts. If you’re struggling with the shift and wondering about things like your mortgage, financial freedom, your superannuation and other potential benefits or risks, it might be wise for you to get in touch with a careers advisor and speak to them about the best way to transition all of your finances.
  1. Have fun with it. This is a golden opportunity for you to strike out again and start afresh! Why the hell wouldn’t you get out there and have as much fun as possible with it? If you’ve always wanted to be a horse trainer then for god’s sake get out there and give it a go! No one is going to make these kinds of dreams happen for you – you truly just have to do it yourself.
  1. Leverage your resources. If you have done the up-skilling, figured out who you really are and why you want to make this shift but have been aimlessly trawling the classified ads for weeks now, then think about hitting the streets, or at least hitting your LinkedIn. A healthy dose of nepotism might be just the think you need to get your new career as a fairy floss vendor off the ground. After all, it’s not what you know (not entirely, anyway) but whom you know that makes the difference.

This is by no means an exhaustive guide to transitioning in your career, so think about the possible options and all of the resources available to you, both in the real world and online, and make sure you make good use of all of them.