When I received my first job offer as a recruiter, I accepted it quickly and wholeheartedly.
• I was keen to leave the private sector and this was a social enterprise – tick.
• It was a small organisation which was my ideal work environment – tick.
• The role was a part-time, which allowed me to spend more time with my family – tick.
• The organisation was headed by two inspiring women (tick) who were paving the way for flexible working in organisations of all sizes and expanding the conversation on women’s employment issues, such as the gender-pay gap, in government, with employers and the media – tick, tick, tick.
This new job satisfied my need to do work with a social purpose while maintaining part-time hours. Perfect! And yet, I had this nagging, uneasy feeling – “do I really want to be a recruiter?” Will taking this job brand me as a recruiter to future employers for the rest of my life? What if I don’t like it? Taking this job means that I will close the door to other possibilities for a while. It means I will invest time in training to become a recruiter and the organisation will be investing its time and resources to train me. What if I am not good at it? What if I am making a BIG mistake?
What actually happened:
• I met a variety of amazing business owners who inspired me to become self-employed
• Not only was the role part-time, but with time I was also able to work from home in the afternoons and arrange my schedule in a way that suited me, as well as my clients
• I discovered I have some pretty sharp negotiating skills, which I polished during my time there
• Working with candidates for roles, while being coached by the career coaches on staff, ignited my curiosity and love of coaching…
Am I still a recruiter? No, but I enjoyed recruitment so much that when that experience was over and I returned to the consultancy world, I eventually managed to make an internal move to recruiting consultants instead of working on projects and I stayed in that role for longer than I had been in most other jobs in the past.
When taking the next step in career change, what often keeps us stuck is being afraid of making a mistake.
Of course, it could all have gone very differently, but that can happen even when we are not making a career change!
I have seen the agony we sometimes put ourselves through when thinking that if we take the wrong job, it will be a mistake and it means we have failed. When this fear is overwhelming it may keep us stuck and stop us from moving forward.
I would like to invite you to consider that when changing careers, perhaps every job experience can guide you to a work situation that will make you truly happy, either because it will show you what you love or because it will show you what you don’t want to do. Either way, you are learning something about yourself and potentially learning new skills you can take with you to the next phase.
If what you’re doing isn’t working, you now have new information and can choose to do something else. In terms of career change, the only way to be sure if you will like something, is to experience it.
So, today I would like to leave you with this question:
How can you make the journey of finding a new career that is right for you less stressful, more enjoyable?
One way is to join me and a small group of like-minded women on 2 June for my How to Do Work You Love workshop. We will work with different modalities including journalling, art and even movement! It will be fun, but it will also help you clarify the first steps you can take to move forward. There are only a couple of tickets left, so book now to save your spot!
You can also always reach out to me for a chat - I would love to hear from you soon!