Written by: Fiona Denton
When the work-balance seesaw is tipped firmly against you; when you hate your job and boss with a passion; when you don’t feel like you’re earning your worth and progressing up the career ladder like you should – perhaps it’s time to consider retraining and changing career.
Changing career doesn’t have to be difficult
Thanks to the Internet and the rise of remote learning, training for changing career is more accessible, and many office-based jobs can be done from home. Training for a new career usually requires commitment and cash, but in the long run, the payoff can be spectacularly rewarding.
Need some inspiration?
Not sure what kind of jobs are suitable for a relative novice? Before you take the plunge, take a look at the following suggestions and see if anything catches your eye – the start of a flexible and rewarding new career could be moments away.
Don’t fitness instructors always look great? Spending all day keeping fit isn’t the only benefit of this career – your hours are as flexible as a yoga teacher, and more varied than the class schedule at your local gym. The job allows you to work in different locations with a huge variety of people, from the old to the young.
Complete a work-based qualification on the job as an assistant instructor, or complete your relevant training before you start work. Aim for a Level 2 Certificate in Fitness Instructing, which is a nationally recognised qualification.
As a driving instructor, you can schedule your lessons around your life, although you can expect plenty of weekend work too. Bookings can be seasonal, meaning you’ll have quieter periods throughout the winter, and especially around Christmas.
There are two ways to set up – either independently, or through a franchise. Work as part of a franchise, and you’ll pay a weekly fee for the privilege, but you’ll be provided with a car. To become a driving instructor, first you must register with the Driving Standards Agency and begin training as an Approved Driving Instructor. Once you have been accepted, you start training for a three-part exam – the first is a computer-based theory test, then there’s a practical driving test, followed by practical teaching test.
Your course must be completed at an accredited centre – to find one in your area, check the DSA website. Complete the course successfully, and soon you’ll be ripping up your L plates and starting your new career as a qualified instructor.
“Eat this, it’s good for you!” As a parent, it’s only natural you should be interested in the science of food and healthy eating – how about using that experience to start a new career? Nutritional Therapists help people to improve their eating habits, health and well-being.
There are no set working hours, and the job is flexible – you can be self-employed, work for a healthcare trust, or work out of clinics and health shops. Travel is usually involved, and you may have to work weekends and evenings.
Although there is no statutory training requirement if you want to become a nutritional therapist, it helps to be a member of a professional body like the Nutritional Therapy Council. To be accepted, you must complete a certain level of accredited training such as a diploma in Nutritional Therapy. Eat up!
No formal qualification is needed before you become a Learning Support Assistant or Teaching Assistant in a state school. However, competition is high, so it’s a good idea to have some degree of training. Childcare or nursing qualifications could be useful, but it’s also helpful to get some voluntary work at a local school. You’ll need a CRB check before working with children. Volunteering is the best way to get a taste of what teaching is like, and if you enjoy it, then you can pursue a more formal qualification. Your local authority may require you to have GCSEs in maths and English.
If your Facebook photo albums are overflowing with well-composed photographs of children, scenery, and animals then perhaps you could become a professional photographer? Start small – to see if you have a true aptitude, embark on a short course ran by your local retailer or local college. From there, you can go onto a more formal course such as a City and Guilds, HND or degree. Once you have completed training, you can set up as a self-employed photographer, and let’s face it, the events you attend will be rather fabulous, such as weddings, birthday parties, and other happy occasions.