Is Your New Career Right in Front of You?

My dog, Atlas, was a stray on the streets of North Carolina when his left back foot was severely damaged. When animal control found him, they took him to a vet who amputated his foot at the ankle. 

When we adopted him he got along just fine on three legs. But as he aged and developed arthritis in his back, he started having trouble walking. 

That’s when we found Jim Alaimo at My Pet’s Brace. Jim and his team make braces, prosthetics and mobility carts for animals. Most of their clients are dogs with ACL injuries but they also help cats, horses, goats, ducks, cows and a llama.

Jim hooked Atlas up with a custom prosthetic that gave Atlas back his mobility.

Jim’s story is fascinating. He spent 25 years making human orthotics and prosthetics. Then, he reinvented his career, but didn’t travel far. He put his skills and experience to work helping animals, and ended up cornering the lucrative market of custom animal braces.

Many people feel stuck in their careers but stall at making a change because they think that they have to completely reinvent themselves, including going back to school, learning completely new skills and starting over again. 

I always say, reinvention isn’t about starting over again, it’s about building on the skills and strengths that you want to take into the future to create a powerful next act

Here are three questions to ask yourself when considering your next act.


#1 WHAT SKILLS DO YOU KEEP IN YOUR TOOLBOX?

If you’ve been staring at spreadsheets your entire career and you never want to see another spreadsheet again, leave that skill out of your “new career toolbox.”

Alternatively, if you love helping teens discover their genius, put teaching or mentoring teens in your toolbox. Categorize your skills on a scale of 1-3. 1=You have expertise in that skill. 2=You have some experience using that skill but need practice. 3=You have limited experience and will need to develop the skill through practice or education.


#2 WHAT ARE ADJACENT CAREERS?

I hear this all.the.time. “I want to work for a nonprofit but I only have corporate experience so they won’t hire me.” Not true. 

You’ll be surprised at how your skills and experience transfers across sectors. The trick is understanding what you want and what the options are for careers that will get you want you want. For example, did you know that sales and fundraising use a lot of the same skills? Organizations are always looking for good fundraisers. 

I have my clients to make a list of adjacent careers. And then we get creative.  Are you a chef but are sick of cooking? What if you put your knowledge of food and nutrition to work as a health coach?


#3 WHAT ARE YOU DISMISSING?

Did you know that there is a man in New York City that has an Off-Broadway show where he blows bubbles the entire time? It’s a fun and entertaining show and the tickets average $100. He makes a living blowing bubbles

What crazy idea are you dismissing because you think you could never make money doing it?

Bubbles. He blows bubbles. And grosses an estimated $40,000 a week (my guesstimation). 

One last thought. Procrastination is the enemy of change. Whatever you are putting off. Stop it. Take action. Book a call with me and let’s get you moving. 

Kirsten Bunch