Have you ever considered a career change? It seems like a radical move, especially if you’ve invested a lot of time, energy and education in a particular career path.
But lots of people do it. Martha Stewart for example, was a stockbroker before she became a caterer (and later a television star). John Grisham was a lawyer before he made it big as an author, writing legal thrillers.
Regular folks switch it up too. My brother, Mike, worked for a multi-national company selling office equipment — now he’s an entrepreneur, running his own successful executive search firm in Calgary. A TV cameraman I know spent years in a completely unrelated field — retail — before switching to television.
And tonight’s episode of Dragons’ Den features a trio of Vancouver doctors who want to become business moguls. Turns out even well-paid, respected physicians have dreams of doing something else! (These ones have invented the Froot Guard, a plastic case that protects your fruit snack from bruising).
And why not make a change? It seems to me that most people have a vast range of interests and abilities. We usually have to make our choice of career when we’re quite young, taking our best guess at what will suit our talents and personalities. Sometimes we don’t even choose — we just fall into various jobs and go from there. No wonder people sometimes feel like they’re attracted to a completely different livelihood.
But switching careers does require careful consideration. You may need to go back to school. You may need to take a lower salary, starting again at the bottom of the ladder. That’s why most people think long and hard before attempting to enter a new field. And most experts advise you do a lot of research beforehand, analyzing your interests, values and skills, so that your new career is a good fit.
Of course, some career changes are bigger than others. Remember the Monty Python sketch about the accountant who wants to become a lion-tamer? Sometimes an easier shift is to take your same skills into a new industry — it can feel like a new career.
The Dragons are a little bit dubious about the doctors who pitch for investment tonight.
“Do you guys really hate being doctors and you keep trying to get out of that field?” asks Robert. Watch tonight to see if the Dragons help this particular career switch happen.