Change in our working world (and in fact in all our worlds) is inevitable, so why aren’t we preparing and planning for it?

A report has just been released that shows that older Australians don’t value career planning or see it as being relevant to their work and lives.

This is despite the undeniable need for greater participation by older Australians in the workforce – and the desire (and often need) for many of us to continue working. In fact, nearly 2 million Aussies over 55 are willing toward but unable to get jobs.

Yes, discrimination plays a part, but often, it is also essential to look at retraining, adding to skills – and being flexible about types of work, salary and so on.

Career planning is important for career success but also for understanding your options, adding to your choices in work, increasing your employability and identifying the need and possibilities for re-skilling. Career planning can also help if you work in a field where jobs are disappearing due to technological change or other factors.  Globalisation, economic restructuring, and technological advancements have changed the work environment so much that many jobs we do today may not exist soon – and many jobs that will make up the workforce in the future don’t exist at all right now.

If you want to stay relevant, extend your working life and have confidence in your ability to get and keep a job as you age, then the report says you need to plan well ahead.

The good news is that of those who do engage in career planning, the majority find it ‘useful’ or ‘very useful’. This is not surprising, as ‘research has found career planning can lead to:

  • increased educational engagement and attainment
  • improved employment outcomes (e.g. higher wages and job satisfaction)
  • improved self-awareness and self-confidence about skills
  • more positive attitudes towards future career options
  • a better understanding of education and employment opportunities
  • an expanded range of career options to explore
  • improved job search and interview skills.’

For those who undertook career planning, most useful were ‘advice on preparing for/transitioning to retirement (31%), assistance to identify interests, skills, strengths and weaknesses/matching to suitable jobs (25%) and guidance on learning, education and training courses relevant to needs (23%)’. Common issues with career planning were that it was not tailored to the individual’s needs, or not aimed at mature Australians.

Of course, all this is not news to me, as I run career and life planning programs tailored specifically to those 45 and over. Many of my most successful clients have been in their 50s or 60s, so if you are up for a discussion about your next decades and some practical tips and tools, why not arrange an intro chat, or contact me to talk about your specific needs.

As a coach, Joanna is wise, in-touch with your situation and no nonsense. I liked working with her. It was easy. I took her ideas as opportunities to lift my thinking. Joanna is clever enough to know that this was what I needed. After a while, I had to start doing the thinking by myself. As time went on, Joanna had me on my own two feet and I was able to walk away feeling I was doing well on my own.  Kate 60+

Joanna Maxwell


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