The job market has been moving faster than ever over the last decade, and it’s becoming increasingly difficult to stay relevant by relying on traditional methods. It’s important to understand how things have changed and how those changes impact you, and to know what options are available to you. Don’t worry though – for the most part, the situation is definitely not bad. It just requires a bit more flexibility and the ability to adapt to changes faster than you might be used to. Let’s have a look at some points you might want to consider in your situation.
It’s Never Too Late for a Career Change
One of the most important things you need to realize – you should never fall into the trap of believing that you’re past your “expiry date” on the job market. If you’re tired of your career and are looking for a potential change, age might seem like a hugely restrictive factor. But the truth is that, in most cases, it won’t really matter. As long as you’ve got the willpower to grind through the initial slow period, you should be able to stand on your feet eventually. And you’ll be surprised by how many people in a similar situation you’re going to meet along the way.
Some fields are known for traditionally having some issues in this regard – tech being perhaps the most notable example. But what many of those stories fail to mention is that your outcome relies heavily on how you’ll build your profile and what skills you’re going to focus on. Those who’ve faced rejection for an outdated skillset will often try to pin the problem on something else.
Side Gigs – Advantages and Disadvantages
Side gigs have gained a lot of popularity during the pandemic, and it’s true that they can be a great resource for filling those income gaps. But it’s important to understand that not everyone’s situation is suitable for something like this, and you have to focus on your primary source of income as best as you can. This will also depend on the skills you have available already – typically you’ll want to base a side gig on some of those instead of starting from scratch.
But if you can, have some long-term plan for where you want to see this thing a few years from now. If you pick the right field and play your cards right, it’s possible to even surpass your main source of income with your side gig one day. But it will require patience, research, and a good dose of luck.
The Importance of Networking
By far the most underestimated skill on the job market has nothing to do with any specific profession. Networking is something you should be aiming to do at every step, regardless of what field you work in. It’s always valuable to have extra contacts and to know who you can turn to in case you run into an unusual problem. Try to talk to people outside of your field of expertise too. You never know what kind of connection you might be able to make down the road that will open new opportunities for you.
Building and maintaining those connections is a skill of its own. Don’t be disappointed if it doesn’t go smoothly at first. Just stay persistent and keep exploring your options. Don’t be too pushy though – this is not the kind of environment where you want to accidentally burn any bridges.
The Value of Online Education
If you want to change your career or even advance in your current one, always remember that online education is an option. And it’s a great option for those who can’t dedicate the time needed for a traditional degree with mandatory presence courses. The current state of online education is actually quite impressive – many of the courses you can take online are on par with what you would learn at a traditional university. Some of them even take less time. An accelerated BSN nursing program from a good institution like the Baylor University is a good example of something that can provide you with some nice opportunities without requiring too much of an investment from you. Of course, don’t underestimate the workload associated with this line of work – but the important point here is that getting your foot in the door isn’t that difficult anymore these days.
Take some time to research the university you’re considering though. There is a lot of difference in the quality of education you’ll get across the board, and you’ll need to put some effort into this to ensure that you’re making the right choice. Thankfully, the internet is a great resource for this, as it will provide you with all the information you’ll need.
Preparing for Your Retirement
Part of being flexible on the job market is about planning your retirement as early as possible, and executing those plans correctly. This is becoming a difficult subject for many people these days, especially in certain lines of work and in some parts of the world. If you don’t start thinking about this early enough, it’s going to become a major problem later on. You should look into diversifying your options as much as possible. Put your money into stocks and other types of investments, instead of only dumping them into your retirement account. Look for alternative options for your main retirement account itself as well. You’ll often find lots of opportunities for investing that can provide a nice return over a long period of time.
Do as much research as you can into all of these options. Some will be more accessible to you than others, but it’s important to take some time to educate yourself before deciding where to focus your efforts. Because in most cases, you’ll find out that you’re doing significantly less than you could be in order to keep your prospects as good as possible on the job market. And in many cases, the extra effort you need to put in is not even as much as you might expect.