Working Transitions

Changing your career in style - deciding upon a new direction following a successful career

Alexandra Shulman OBE  - Style Bible Vogue’s longest serving editor – is leaving the publication after 25 years’ service.  Taking the helm in 1992, she has steered the magazine through a period of great change and has been the most successful editor of Vogue in its 100-year history.

The 56-year-old confirmed the news in a statement and indicated that she will wrap up her editing duties in the summer. Stating that it was "hard to find a rational reason to leave" but she "wanted to experience a different life", Alexandra is now excited about the future and the opportunities that lay ahead.

Described as a superb journalist and editor as well as a hardworking, perceptive and brilliant leader, Alexandra has a wealth of transferable skills which will stand her in good stead whatever venture she decides to explore next.  Her challenge may well be deciding which path is going to bring the satisfaction she seeks.

Career change in later life is growing in popularity – many people find that they have greater flexibility to explore options that were not available to them earlier in their careers due to family or financial commitments.  They often have a wealth of transferable skills along with an increased confidence in their abilities and a better awareness of their strengths, weaknesses, likes and dislikes which sets them up extremely well for new challenges.

A recent study conducted by the American Institute for Economic Research showed that 82% of participants who made a career change after 45 were successful in their transition – they report being happier in their new roles with many earning more than they did previously.  With the average worker anticipating retirement at 66 – or even later – a change of career can be both revitalising and rewarding.

Having a clear vision is vital if you want to achieve your end goals and be successful in your new career choice.  Developing a vision statement to inspire and motivate you will help you on your journey.  The following tips (adapted from Randall S. Hansen of Quintessential Careers  can help you develop your vision statement – whether you’re working alone or with a career coach:

  • Suspend logic – When thinking about your career vision remember – anything is possible! Find ways around potential barriers.  The following ‘blue sky’ questions can help your creativity.  Reflect on each:
    • How do YOU define career success? Have you achieved success at some level to date?  What job will help you to achieve complete success?
    • What would you want to do today if money were no object?
    • What would your career look like if you had the power to make it any way you wanted?
    • What would you like your career obituary to say about your career accomplishments and the impact you had on your colleagues?
    • Who are the people you most admire? Why?
    • What is the one activity you most love? Is it part of your career?  If not, what steps can you take to make it part of your career?
    • What would you like your career to look like in 5 years? 10 years?
  • Pull it all together into a career vision statement.  Write a short, concise statement along with a brief description of how you see yourself accomplishing it.  Write everything in the present tense – as if you have already achieved it.  This creates the right frame of mind and confidence in your future.
  •  Keep it visible! Once you have created your vision statement post it in various places.  Read it and say it aloud regularly.  Imagine yourself achieving your vision.  Constantly reinforcing this image will help you both consciously and unconsciously to achieve your goals.
  •  Review your statement regularly.  Your vision can – and most likely will – change as you move closer to it. 


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Working Transitions
11 May 2017
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