We ran a piece on whether all careers have a shelf life. There are obviously some careers where time is of the essence and getting yourself in when you’re young (or old) may be the best route. However, no, you can do anything at any stage of your life if you so choose. Knowing your limits is good so you know when you’ve exceeded them.
The Guardian ran a piece on people in their fifties and above changing career trajectory. At a time when most people are salivating over their pension plans, scrimping and saving so as to make the inevitable retirement as comfortable as possible, the men and women in that article and presumably loads like them have chosen to switch it up and try something new while they still can. Thrilling stuff that reminds you how diverse and wonderful human life can be.
Another article published by Jobsite about changing your career in your fifties was written by Lucy Kellaway who told the Financial Times back in 2016 that she was going to quit being a columnist there to go and retrain as a teacher. This was a bold move for someone making the amount Lucy was.
Specifically, Lucy retrained as a Maths Tutor and whilst the money for this is pretty good it wasn’t quite up to the usual rate they pay columnists at The Financial Times, naturally.
The examples in the guardian are often leaving office jobs for acting or entertainment which seems to be about fulfilment rather than finance. There is a trend amongst those that choose to change jobs late on and that is the realisation that money is not everything. Taking a pay cut doesn’t terrify them like it would so many people in their 20’s or 30’s.
That said, it’s important to point out financial stability by your fifties is often something that comes naturally, those working for longer will have saved more, theoretically. Changing your job isn’t something anyone should do without properly considering it first and if finances permit then you can start thinking about things you love.
Training programmes and apprenticeships for over 50’s are available now and there are more opportunities for those who were once considered cemented into their chosen path than there ever were. The government seem to have taken notice and also seem to value the skills and economic potential of this particular generation.
With the wealth of contacts and life experience you will have surely accumulated by the time you hit fifty, it’s arguable that this is the perfect time for a change.