These days, many people are thinking about a potential career change. The need for a change of environment, the desire for more freedom, less stress, more meaning are all running through them, and professional reconversion may seem like the ideal solution.
But what is the reality? Is career change always THE solution? Aren’t there other possibilities?
Let’s explore them together in this article!
I coach many clients on the issue of career transition and I’ve come to realise that career change isn’t always the answer, and that there are different situations.
I’ll simplify them as follows;
- I like my job, but not my environment
- I no longer like my job or my environment
- I don’t like my job any more, but my environment is fine
- I like my job and my environment
At this stage, it’s probably not very clear… So let’s break down these different situations.
I like my job, but not my environment
People who are starting to think about a potential career change would first like to carry out a skills assessment to find out where they stand so that they can then explore the options available for a change of direction. We then work together to help them rediscover their personality, their talents and their desires.
It often happens that, along the way, they realise that their job actually suits them very well and that it’s another factor that’s causing them problems: the working environment. This environment weighs so heavily on them that they hastily conclude that it’s also the job that no longer suits them.
And that’s understandable, because the work environment can prevent people from fulfilling themselves in a job they love!
Too much work, too much stress, too little recognition, too little team spirit, too little support… all these systemic criteria can have a huge impact on the person, making them think that it’s the job itself that’s the problem. These are all factors that can lead to burnout.
The solution here is a change of context.
The aim of the support will be to restore the person’s energy and confidence so that they can review their CV and cover letter and find another environment in which they can once again flourish in their job.
I non longer like my job or my environment
Here, everything is called into question. The person no longer enjoys their job and therefore probably no longer recognises themselves in the values conveyed by their environment.
Either the person has simply moved on and is in a different phase of life with different needs, values and priorities. Or the person has never really enjoyed their job, but they were quite gifted or successful at it, so they never really asked themselves the question and just kept on going…
In this situation, coaching will help to give the person a new direction while exploring what assets they can use in their reorientation. Even if you completely change direction, there are always more skills to re-use than you initially think!
Questions such as these will surface:
- Should I take a training course?
- What status should I take in this new direction: employee, self-employed, hybrid situation combining the two
- What’s the right timing for this change of direction?
- What is the financial risk involved
- What support is available for retraining?
The coaching journey will guide the person through all these stages and help them to take action by giving them confidence in their new diraction and their skillset.
I don’t like my job any more, but my environment is fine
In this situation, the person is staying because they like where they work. They’ve made friends and found a great place to work, but they don’t like their job any more.
We’re social animals, and a strong social bond can lead us to stay in a job that ultimately doesn’t fulfil our potential.
In this case, coaching will help the person to find a new direction and change environment without guilt or regret.
I lke my job and my environment
Er, so what’s the problem?
I can’t take it any more!
During some coaching sessions, my clients realise that it’s not the job or the working environment that’s the problem, but the way they approach their work and their work-life balance.
They’re generally perfectionists who put a lot of pressure on themselves, who want to do everything perfectly without asking for help and who, as a result, can no longer cope with managing their work/life to the beat of a drum because it exhausts them and ultimately ruins their enjoyment.
In this situation, professional retraining is not appropriate, as a change of environment would certainly bring about renewal, but the problems will reappear later… So it’s the relationship with work that needs to be deconstructed.
Coaching will help you to understand the underlying reasons for perfectionism and its impact, so that you can look at things from a different angle and rediscover lightness and pleasure at work and at home!
A career change is really great! It’s a new adventure, a new challenge, a way of reinventing yourself and your life. But it’s not for everyone and it’s not for every situation.
So career change needs to be approached with caution, because it takes time, money and energy! It’s not something you can do overnight, it’s something you have to think about and build on, and your ‘why’ has to be solid enough to cope with any difficulties that may arise.
So if you’re looking for a change, you should certainly explore the possibility of professional retraining, taking all the factors into account!