Change of Career

Is it a good idea in the current economic climate to opt for a change of career?

When a person considers a change of career, they must take into consideration all responsibilities and commitments. Individual circumstances are different, sacrifices may have to be made, your standard of living may be impacted.


One option is to plan for a change of career whilst keeping your current job.  This way you’ll be in position to take advantage of the market when the economy changes.  A change of career can take years to accomplish, but the long term personal rewards can be enormous.


Who should you talk to about embarking on a change of career?


You should speak to an impartial and qualified career guidance professional.  They will partner with you to explore areas such as your beliefs, values, academic history, and financial circumstances to develop a career plan that is achievable and in line with your values and ultimately helping you to visualise a better future and help you manage your change of career.


Change of Career – How do you find out what career best suits you?


Usually the client who has absolutely no idea what career they should embark on is the easiest to provide guidance for, as they are ‘open’ to change, as well as being determined to make that career change.


Career guidance professionals have vast experience with individuals from an array of industries.  They are trained to understand motivation, learning style, study skills, reflective practice, counselling, labour market, decision making, etc.  There are also aptitude tests that can assist in facilitating career choices.


A simple starting point might be to pose this question that will allow you to reflect:

‘What would be my dream job?’ Now start writing down your thoughts, freely.


How do you go about embarking on that change of career – how do you finance it, how do you cope with starting at the bottom both in terms of self-esteem and with less money?


One way for a client to stay motivated is to focus on goal setting.  I recommend client’s set achievable targets and try to visualise the greater opportunities that will exist when their career goals are reached.  A readjustment in your career takes time, it’s not as easy as flicking a switch.


Financing further education in Ireland at the moment is not particularly easy.  Many families have been impacted by the years of austerity.  The ‘positive’ is that going into debt in order to position your career in the right direction is manageable. There are student loan banking available with the high street banks, you do not have to start making repayments until you are working and if you decide to start paying the loan and you have no job you can make the minimum interest repayments while you seek a job.  Stagger your fee payments with the University, you will not graduate until you pay your fees but you can spread your fee payments over the year.  There is also a hardship fund available in most third level institutions.


Family support is extremely important, do you know a relative that has the ability to support you and your education?


The client should consider the financial return on investment and the employability skills that will be enhanced by further education and embarking on that change of career.


Diarmuid Haughian

MA Career Guidance, QCG

Career Change

Career Change