Career Changer: “Sital, I need your advice.

I’m a qualified accountant but have taken a career break for a number of years for family reasons. I’m about to start a 12 month teacher training course and become a teacher. But I’m not too sure if I’m doing the right thing. What do you think?
Sital: “Firstly, tell me attracts you to teaching. What made you sign up for the course?”

Career Changer: “Well it’s the easy option”

Sital: “The easy option?”

Career Changer: “Yes. There’s a shortage of teachers and so it should be easy to find work. Plus we’ll always need teachers.”

Sital: “ok……so what else attracts you to teaching?”

Career Changer: “The holidays. Teachers get lots of holidays. I want a career with plenty of free time and shorter hours. So teaching would suit me.

Sital: “Apart from it being easy and all the holidays, what else draws you to the profession and the course?”

Career Changer: “…..nothing else really – that’s it”

Sital: “Can I ask what kind of research you’ve done into teaching?

Career Changer: “Oh I’ve done lots of reading on the internet”

Sital: “Have you spent time in schools as a teacher’s assistant or time with other teachers to understand what the role involves and what parts you’d enjoy or be good at?”

Career Changer: “Well no…”

Sital: “Let me ask you a question:

Let’s imagine I came to you for advice because I was about to start training to become an accountant. I had no experience and had never spent time with an account, but thought it would a nice and easy option – after all, we’ll always need accountants.

Does that sound like a good idea?

Career Changer: “No, you can’t do that!”

Sital: “Why not?”

Career Changer: “Because it’s not that easy. The course and the job are demanding.”

Sital: “Oh, I’ll be fine – I’m good with numbers. And it’s a nice easy option. I can work freelance, work from home and take holidays when I like between month end cycles”

Career Changer: “That’s just not right”

Sital: “Oh why not?”

Career Changer: “Because you’re not passionate about accountancy.”

Sital: “Really?

Well isn’t that what you’re doing? Choosing teaching because you think it’s an easy option, yet you’ve no passion for it.”

Career Changer: “Aaaah….yes”

(The penny dropped)

Career Changer: “I think I need to do some more research into teaching. And maybe look at finding a career which I’m passionate about.”

Choosing a career option because you assume it’s the easy or safe option is a huge disservice to both the profession and the people the profession serves: pupils, patients or clients.

But it’s an even bigger disservice to yourself.

If you’re going to put yourself through the stress, hassle and set backs of shifting careers then at least ensure it’s something you care about, something you’re excited about doing, something you’re intrinsically motivated to do. You’ll be far more satisfied and successful.

Are you taking the easy option…?