How to Prepare For a Job Change (Whether You Want it Or Not)

Job change is on the horizon for many late-career professionals today. Maybe you don’t like your career and want to try something different. Or maybe you’re worried about losing your job.

Late-career job loss is a legitimate retirement concern, even if your boss is happy with your work. Career corporate workers are becoming obsolete thanks to the gig economy. One Intuit study found that 40 percent of US workers will be freelancers by 2020.

Replacing your salaried job with lower paid freelancers is just good business.

No matter if you want to leave your job or fear you’ll have to, here’s how to prepare.

Improve Your Skills

The most obvious way to become more valuable to your current company and potential employers is by improving your skillset. You don’t need to go back to school, but simply educate yourself with the help of the internet.

Improve skills that would be an asset to your employers. You may even be able to develop a side business based on your knowledge, and develop multiples streams of income..

Think Outside the Box

Most corporate workers worried about job change think networking is the way to go. But schmoozing with your friends isn’t going to help you make a big shift and alleviate your retirement concerns.

Instead, you have to think outside the box. Turn yourself into a known entity at your business and in your industry so you can lengthen your runway (keep your job longer), or find new opportunities elsewhere.

Here are some starting essentials I recommend to succeed:

  • Update and expand on your professional bio and CV
  • Start publishing thought papers on your industry
  • Get interviewed by trade or other publications
  • Create a community profile including charity leadership
  • Build experience with cross-divisional teams
  • Brainstorm other ways to gain international recognition for your performance and contributions
  • Develop extensive contacts with Executive Search firms in your specialty

If job loss is one of your retirement concerns, following these essential strategies is a great way to mitigate the problem.

Address Your Retirement Concerns

Admitting to yourself that job change is a necessity or reality is the first step to executing it successfully. Stop worrying about what to do when you lose your job at 50. Mentally planning for job change sharpens your senses so you can easily see opportunities to build your reputation.

So many of your colleagues share the same retirement concerns, but they drag themselves to work, do the same job, and fade into the background. You, however, are aiming to become an MVP employee. This is the best way to lengthen your runway and find new opportunities if your retirement concerns come true.

Live Within Your Means

No matter what you do to demonstrate you’re a valuable asset to a business, your retirement concerns can still become reality. Maybe you’re replaced by bowtie-wearing, MBA-wielding Millennials. Or worse, they’ve got a robot who can do your job to perfection.

There’s always a chance you’ll lose your job and end up at the unemployment office at 50. It happens all the time.

To minimize the impact of this on your life now, you need to live within your means. Gen-Xers, I’m talking to you. One study by economists found that Gen-X has much higher debt rates than previous generations. It’s time to draw a line in the sand.

There’s no way to gain financial freedom and start building a real nest egg unless you eliminate debt and start living within your means.

Next, you can develop ways to start saving money. And I know some great ways you can boost your income (beyond your corporate paycheck) and alleviate your retirement concerns. Read more on the blog and join our community to learn more.

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