Is It Too Late to Find a Career You Love?
Just five short years ago, I was at a crossroads. Should I stay in my safe salaried position in our home office or should I make the leap to become a commission-based financial advisor? My first thought was that I was too old to make such a drastic change. How could I suddenly change careers in my fifties? Would I have the energy and stamina? Was I smart enough, savvy enough, persuasive enough to bring in new clients and generate a decent income? It was a scary transition from the comfort of a consistent salary and detailed job description to basically running my own business with no guarantees!
Luckily, I had a wise mentor who sat me down and walked me through the decision. Being a Baby Boomer, he explained, gave me credibility and put me in a great spot to be able to relate to all of the generations. I had the skills to build the relationships necessary to help all investors whether they were young and just starting out, in their higher income and savings years or enjoying their retirement years. My mentor gave me the final push when he told me that I was crazy not to accept this opportunity!
Needless to say, I committed to the career change and after five years, all has worked out very well for me as my business is thriving! It was not a cakewalk and I did have those moments when I questioned my decision, but I feel that I have finally figured out my true calling. It took about thirty years but it has been worth the wait! (I will fill you in on the last thirty years in a future article.) Bottom line is that it is not too late to change or start a career. In fact, it’s about time you find the career that gives you real satisfaction!
Let’s see if your current career matches your calling by answering these three questions.
Your work day was a success if you ____________________.
What is your greatest professional skill?
Your career goal is to ____________________________.
If you answered mostly “A”, then you most likely are motivated by compensation. These types of professionals align their success with more physical rewards, such as paychecks and promotions. Salespeople whose income is typically tied directly to their performance, fall into this category. If this describes you, you will thrive in an environment in which your hard work will never go unrewarded.
If your answers aligned with option “B”, then you may be an internally motivated professional. These people work because they feel driven to do so by an intangible force. They are considered more “Type A” personalities, possessing high levels of organization and attention to detail. If you fall into this category, you will likely succeed in an independent environment, where you can focus clearly on yourself and your own goals.
If you mostly chose option “C”, then you could be motivated by your community. Community-minded people work in service of those around them, with a strong desire to leave things better than they found them. They volunteer at local food pantries or spend time improving their community. These people enjoy a workplace that emphasizes community engagement and professional success equally.
It’s important to know what motivates you and why you go to work. Don’t be afraid to make a change if you are not in the right career. Don’t be afraid to start a career if you have been out of the work force for a number of years. We may be over fifty but we still have plenty of time left to make a difference in our own lives and the lives of others!
For more information about careers at Edward Jones go to