According to Stats SA, our unemployment rate has risen
to 27,7%, making job security a rarity and finding a job even harder. However
glum this may be, it presents an opportunity for you to take a leap of faith
and do the things that you really want to do.
Get into business
Career coach Khanya Matlala suggests that you plan your business venture while you’re still working. “This is hard, especially for someone who has a stable job. In the beginning, they can’t see how starting a business would make them enough money to cover their bills. Careful planning is key. This is why consulting with a business coach is so important. You need someone to guide you on your ideas and develop a plan for your business that can set you up for success.”
Joburg-based career coach Vanessa Carstens adds: “Get a mentor that can help you unleash your hidden potential. Starting your own business can be daunting and you need a support system, not just a financial one, to help you through the journey. Some people are natural entrepreneurs, but they need to understand how a company operates before jumping into the decision blindly. Learn from others’ mistakes, and choose your potential business partners very carefully.”
Go back to school
Making the financial and time commitment to go back to study for an advanced degree or certificate is overwhelming, but many choose this route, which does pay off in the long term.
“The pay-off is getting a qualification that’ll make you eligible for a promotion or career change,” adds Matlala. “Lots of people put their careers on hold by not making education a priority.
“If you decide to go back to school, discuss this with your immediate family. Sometimes you have to give up on the short-term luxuries to gain in the long term.”
Carstens advises: “Ask how your decision will impact you and your immediate family. You want to get them on board and to support your decision. Too many people make career decisions based on short-term gains.” Also, discuss it with your employer, so they can make plans.
Bad career decisions made early in life can lead you down the path of misery and frustration. Matlala says this is could be an option for people over 30 because they’ve spent so many years getting to where they are today, and don’t want to throw it all away.
“Thanks to all the experience they already have, people over the age of 30 actually stand a chance to grow faster if they start a new career. They can take the skills they’ve learned and transfer them to their new role as a way to move up the ranks a lot faster than any junior in the same position,” says Matlala.