Matching a career dream to reality can be daunting. Monthly house payments, college tuition, and just the daily routine we’ve grown accustomed to — will they be hindered? Well, possibly. But we all know there can be little change without risk. However, career change can be achieved.
Q: How much time can I devote to changing my career or reentering the work force?
A: On average, it can take 18 months or more to make a career change, say industry experts. Even with a Boomer Den apprenticeship, you may choose to continue on with more training or certification. During those months, household income may decline as the “steady paycheck” takes a temporary back seat. Can you and your family absorb the dip?
Q: What is my tolerance for financial risk?
A: Says Kerry Hannon, author of “Great Jobs for Everyone 50+,” your current financial health can answer this question. One survey finds that nearly a quarter of people in job transition earn no income for a period of time. Do you have a year’s worth of savings to cover daily living expenses? That’s an important question. Try your best to NOT tap into retirement savings to fund this transition. While the payoff may be great tomorrow, make sure you can absorb the risk today.
Q: Is there a market for the field I wish to pursue?
A: While a Boomer Den apprenticeship can help connect you to businesses eager to train you, you’ll still need a general picture of the job market. Do your research ahead of time. Is there a need out there for what you hope to become — a bicycle shop owner? A microbrewer? A pet masseuse?
Q: Will I need additional training or classroom instruction?
A: You may. A Boomer Den apprenticeship won’t replace the need for formal training, depending on the field. But it can tell you, realistically, if you wish to sign up for it. A “test drive” of the job in a real-world setting can help provide those answers.
Q: Does your family or social network support your decision?
A: It’s your career dream; not someone else’s. Still, it’s nice to have the support of loved ones. Explain your plans to pursue a second career; at the least, explain the role of a 3-month apprenticeship. Information is the first step towards gaining support from friends and family.
Q: Do you have the necessary “stick-to-itiveness” to see your dream through?
A: Only you can truly answer that question. Any new endeavor – personal or professional – can be challenging, and even scary. Just follow your gut. It usually won’t steer you wrong.