It’s not too late to learn how to pivot your career path!
“What do you want to be when you grow up?” is a common question children are asked from a young age. You might get answers anywhere from a dinosaur to an astronaut, but many have no clue.
For some, a career path is laid out for them. For others, the question is scary: how are you supposed to know from a young age what you want to do until retirement?
My answers varied depending on my age. When I was young, I used to say ‘a ballerina’. How blissful would it be to spin around on stage in a tutu with everyone applauding?
As I got a little older, into my tweens, my answer was ‘an animator,’ and then celebrity stylist and by university had I found a passion for media and marketing. I was inspired by how products came to be, the television commercials behind them and how they became a brand.
It is very common for individuals to change career paths several times.
A large portion of Ontario students graduate and decide to work in another field than the one they initially pursued. In fact, at least 80 per cent of higher education students change their major throughout college or university.
It is okay to change what you want to study or what field you would like to work in. Everyone walks a different path to success, and there are options and opportunities to ensure your career journey accurately reflects your passions and aspirations.
So, what can you do if you change your mind?
Take classes to up-skill
Perhaps you know what field you want to pivot into, or maybe you don’t. Regardless, there are a myriad of courses available to help you expand your knowledge and skills.
You can also explore the Government of Canada Job Bank to get a sense of the job market and choose a career path you are most interested in learning more about.
- Gale Courses: Expand your knowledge and learn something new with 360+ instructor-led online classes. You can take Gale courses for free with a library card from any Ontario library. Open a library card either in person or online through your closest public library’s website, and browse courses you’re interested in. New sections begin every month.
- Learning Hub: Employment Ontario runs this free program for adults in Ontario. All you need is your Social Insurance Number. Learning Hub offers various courses to help you build and learn new skills, such as career-decision making and computing for careers.
- Randstad: The Propeller Experience is a new eight-week digital skills program designed to help Canadian women accelerate women’s progress in the workplace and increase opportunity equity. The program helps participants complete mindset training to reframe what is possible for their career, build skills needed to achieve those goals, and provides live coaching sessions for guidance and action.
Find A Mentor
Whether or not you have a clear vision of the career path you want to pursue, a mentor can help guide you on your next professional journey or provide advice on how they found success in their own field.
- BPW Mentoring: BPW launched a Women Strengthening Women free online mentoring program for members across Ontario. Mentors and mentees can easily make connections around the province. Whether the goal is changing careers, navigating a new job or learning new skills, the platform makes finding and working with a mentor easier than ever.
- The Rosie Mentoring Programs: The Rosie Mentoring Programs were created to address women’s limited access to role models and mentors. The program was designed for women entering, upskilling or pivoting to careers in STEM, skilled trades and leadership. The program provides Ontario women with the opportunity to receive guidance, support and encouragement as they progress in their careers.
Resume and Interview Help
So, you have honed new skills and partnered with a mentor to smoothly pivot your career aspirations. Now it is time to brush up your resume and obtain interview help!
Many Ontario resources can provide you with the skills you need to assemble or improve your resume, nail those interviews and get the job.
- Employment Ontario: Employment Ontario provides resources to help job seekers with grants and other services for public and private sector employment. Workers and job seekers can make a free appointment to speak with an employment counsellor to help develop career goals, prepare for interviews or start a job. The Government of Ontario also provides great resources for writing a cover letter and resume.
- Yes Network: The Toronto-based network is a Canadian employment training, programming and job placement leader for those aged 18 to 29. This organization offers employment counselling, training and placement programs, online training and development and more. Services include professional staff assisting in job search strategies, individual help with resumes, cover letters, and interviews and job boards with full and part-time postings. There are also volunteer opportunities, career information, training opportunities, and local labour market information.
Good luck pivoting your career path, and remember it is never too late, and you are never too old to pursue your passion!