Top Enders change careers in tough times

About 2.7 million Australians either left the labour force, lost their job or had their hours reduced. And yet, some NT folk are making a career change amid the economic carnage. This story is from the ABC.

Brendan Moore was working as a trainee building surveyor and was watching the news when the Prime Minister announced new coronavirus restrictions.

“The next day I got a call around 4 o’clock from the boss and he said, ‘Sorry mate, we have to make you redundant’,” he said.

Mr Moore said he was using his redundancy as a catalyst to change his career and become a medic.

“It isn’t always easy. I think sometimes the uncertainty pops into your head especially after I have invested so much of my life into the building industry,” he said. “But with the times as they are, it makes sense to make the change now.”

Before you make a career change, look at how you like to work, what your career values are and the things you’d gladly do even if you weren’t getting paid to do it. This will help you identify the kind of role you should be aiming for.

Check out job ads and seeing what skills are required of potential applicants. This will confirm your suitability for that level of work, or give you some idea of the skills you need to work on.

While you may not have direct experience in the new field you’re aiming for, it’s still worth examining your skill set and looking at what you can take with you into your new career. Strong administration and computer skills are easily transferable to industries ranging from finance to marketing, while communication skills and an aptitude for problem-solving can be applied to almost any role.

Undertaking further study can often give you the new credentials required to make a career change. This is what psychotherapist Dr Karen Phillip discovered when she decided to leave behind a career in executive management in her late 30s.

After ending her marriage and realising how valuable counselling was to her during this time, Dr Phillip made the decision to move into counselling work. To help facilitate this, she completed a Diploma in Counselling at the age of 38. Dr Phillip says that her successful career transition was owed to “60 per cent study – the rest of it was internal drive and confidence.”

Remember when you were in high school or uni and you did work experience to get a taste for a particular line of work? There’s nothing stopping you from doing the same thing now. This will give you some first-hand experience that you can add to your resume plus it allows you to start gaining the necessary skills to move into your new career.

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