How did you get into the career that you are in today? For each of the career changes, I have made the common theme is that they all started with a conversation and it was these individuals that opened my eyes to a career that I hadn’t considered. I may have known about them, but they weren’t on my radar.
Yet often I find (myself included) that we will avoid talking to people about our happiness in our jobs, we pretend that all is good “how’s work?”...... “good thanks.” The autopilot kicks in, or maybe we don’t want to appear as though we are moaning and that life isn’t perfect. Sometimes we can feel guilty for wanting more for ourselves and not being grateful for what we have? It can be because we are worried about what they will think because we don’t have it all figured out yet, we don’t want to worry them. These are legitimate and common reasons why we may keep our career dreams to ourselves, but in doing so we could be impeding our career transition. If this sounds familiar check out this blog.
As I have shared with you before, I am very good at procrastinating when I don’t know what to do, it’s my go-to when I am faced with making a decision that is outside my comfort zone. So much so that when I finished my degree I had no idea what I want to do and when my uni boyfriend asked if I wanted to go travelling with him, I jumped at the idea and what was originally planned for 6 months (well that’s what we told our parents) turned into 16 months. But when I came back I was ready to work, my brain needed to be used, I was fed up with living on a very tight budget, camping, not buying new clothes and living on rice! I started to think about what could be good options for me and started to engage in conversations with other people to help me.
Conversation 1. My first conversation (well the one I can remember, we are talking over 20 years ago!) was with a friend from university who had been on the same degree program. She had started to build a career for herself in Recruitment and loved it. It had the social aspect of our degrees, it was in the business world, it was helping people and you could make decent money.
Conversation 2. Within a month I had my first interview with the owner of an independent recruitment agency. Following the interview we sat down for feedback, she explained to me that working within a Recruitment Agency had a very sales focus and based on the answers I had given her she didn’t feel this was what I wanted. But it was her next line that set the balls rolling -‘Have you thought about HR?’ To be honest no I hadn’t!
Conversation 3. My Aunt was the HR Manager for a local water utility. I vaguely knew this was what she did, but I hadn’t really understood what it involved. I sat down with her and had a long conversation, I shared with her the areas that I had considered previously, social work, teaching, law and what became evident from our conversation was that HR had similar aspect but all within the business context. I can remember starting to feel a growing buzz in my tummy. And that is how I found my first career in HR which gave me what I wanted for a number of years.
The power of the conversations is the following:
- It creates new ideas by opening your eyes and mind.
- It enables you to gather information so you can start to assess if this could be a good move for you.
- You get insight into what a role is really like as opposed to what you think it is.
- It helps to break down what perhaps seems impossible to what could become your reality.
With my next career move, it started again with a conversation, this time with a fitness instructor announcing to my class that she had just qualified as a life coach and was offering her services. A month later we were having coffee, which resulted in me booking myself in for some sessions. Through my work with her, I was able to start to get clear on what I wanted for myself and I became aware of this whole other career, that would enable me to combine my HR experience with my passion for wanting to help others live their best life.
This was further reinforced by another conversation with a supplier I was working with at the time who specialised in helping companies to increase employee engagement. With only 30% of employees feeling engaged at work (2019 Gallup), I started to realise that that there was a massive opportunity for me to help people achieve greater fulfilment in their working lives by showing them how to work out what factors need to show up in their jobs to make them happy and how to test new careers out so that they can make their move with clarity and confidence and as they say the rest is history!
Prior to these two conversations, coaching was not on my radar! The pieces of the puzzle were coming together and then through more conversations, I started to understand that this would be a fit for me and what I needed to do to make the transition.
What is the conversation you need to start today? Perhaps it’s a conversation with me? If you want to understand more about how to make a successful career change then why not take advantage of a free call with me or take a look at this video.