Now that Labor Day has passed it is unofficially the start of the new fall season. The television lineups are beckoning those who enjoy escaping into the latest new episode of Game of Thrones. For some it’s putting away the white shoes, and gearing up for Uggs. For others it’s the start of the school year for kids and the hectic schedules replacing the lazy days of summer. For many, it is gearing up for more active business and ramping up before the holiday season takes over (which seems to be earlier every year, with Halloween paraphernalia creeping onto shelves).
With signs of a cool breeze, most are glad to see the record breaking heat waves coming to an end. Change is in the air, and getting ready for something new is always a positive start. But for those seekers in the job market, it is still a bit stilted and competition is fierce for anyone who has attempted to make a switch or has been laid off. Fewer than half of employees in the United States are satisfied with their jobs, according to the Conference Board’s Job Satisfaction Survey survey.
“Many people come to a point in their careers when it is time for a change. Stagnation in a current role or company, changes in career goals and interests, or an unplanned change in employment status can all lead to a transition.”
Many people are also delaying their retirement because of financial constraints, and others are seeking more stimulation. Not content to stay home and sit on the front porch in their rocking chairs, watching the world go by. (Like a Norman Rockwell painting) In fact, many older people are seeking a career change and keeping their mind sharp by learning new things with a new life focus. After decades of working in a particular field, they may have other transferrable skills that they have not yet explored. In addition, with the new world of technology and online opportunities, there are a multitude of unique careers that were not available when they were in college.
Deciding upon a career transition is like embarking on a new adventure into uncharted territory. It can be exciting and also a bit fearsome at the start. However there are a multitude of coaches and training programs available to assist the job seeker with successful leadership advice and counseling.
“Career changes, whether planned or not, can be daunting. Transitioning from one type of job to another often comes with new skill sets, new people and new responsibilities in a very short span of time.”
Forbes Coaches Counsel
Sometimes life may throw us a curve ball, but it may also be a rerouting opportunity to change the course of our lives and direct us into a new and exciting adventure. One way to explore the possibilities is to go back to school and get that advanced degree. Many have thought about it throughout the years, but time and life got in the way. With empty nesters, and those that are seniors, there are the real constrains of ageism in the workplace. Many need to have a tune up “to get up to speed on emerging areas of employment – or start your own business.” There are actually numerous free or low-cost opportunities for you to audit” (Non-degree) college-level classes.
However, for those that are serious about embarking on a new life, getting a degree will definitely give you an advantage over the masses that apply for a position in the competitive job market. For example, it’s almost impossible to get even a mid-level job these days without an MBA. In addition, schools of higher learning are the best places for continuing education and many returning students are there not only for a new career but for self-improvement. Keeping one’s mind sharp, through learning new skills and information is the best preventative measure for avoiding the boredom of retirement.
Professional development certificates are very popular for those that are seeking a new avenue of expertise. Even prestigious Ivy League schools are offering flexibility and convenience with interactive online learning. eCornell, for example has several high-ranked programs such as Hospitality and Food Service Management, Marketing and even the highly popular Plant Based Nutrition Studies.
There are flexible ways of gaining a graduate degree now that were not available for many older students. For many who are seeking an accredited, highly ranked, and school but live far away, there is the online master’s program. Finding a high quality, high ranked MBA program can be challenging. The key is to find a program that will “focus on practical application and implementation of business knowledge so that you can apply your MBA to your career starting on day one.”
Being able to customize the speed and program that you need for your career goals is also a key factor.
A great example is the Concordia MBA online program, which is designed so that all the courses integrate Four Pillars of Knowledge into the curriculum.
• Ethics and Social Responsibility
• Critical Thinking and Entrepreneurial Mindset
• Communication and Human Relations
• Global Interconnectedness and Inclusiveness
There are also specialization courses and can be enrolled in at any time during your MBA program or after you have completed all of your core courses.
This is one of the few schools that are sensitive to the needs of older students.
In fact, the “AARP Foundation has awarded a grant to Concordia University Chicago’s Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship and Center for Gerontology to conduct Work for Yourself@50+℠ workshops in Oak Park/River Forest and the Chicagoland area. This national grant initiative is designed to help vulnerable older adults assess opportunities for self-employment, build skills, and connect with resources that will enable them to generate income by working for themselves.” It is among 32 community-based organizations selected to receive funds to assist older adults.”
The future is bright for those who are seeking to start a new course, turning a new leaf on life. By embarking on an adventure into a career transition, it will certainly add much enrichment for the remaining golden years.