Becoming a parent is an exciting new role, and for many, this break from your day job opens up thoughts about a new career. Taking maternity leave may give you a new perspective, and when you head back to work, there is the opportunity to try something new, with the help of Careers Australia.
One mum who has forged a new career after parenthood is Caroline Taylor, the founder of Mum’s Grapevine. She shares six tips for switching careers after becoming a parent.
The birth of Mum’s Grapevine
Caroline was in her mid-thirties and her son, Willie, was a baby when she came up with the idea for Mum’s Grapevine.
The blogging site we know and love started as an email service that told mums about sales happening near them. Fast-forward eight years, and Mum’s Grapevine has millions of visitors each year, and its Founding Director has firmly established her post-parenthood career.
Before becoming a mum, Caroline worked in advertising, science and was the owner of a successful horticultural business. She has three Degrees and proves that you are not tied to one career for eternity. Variety is the spice of life, after all!
1. Love your work
When you change career you’re embarking on a new journey, so find something you’re passionate about and set a goal that you’ll enjoy achieving.
For Caroline, becoming a mum brought a new interest in kids’ fashion sales. She says, “my Mother’s Group and I used to go to all the warehouse sales and I started to think that if our group was interested in where sales were happening, then other mums might be too.”
2. You can do it!
Once you have an idea of what you’d like to do, sprinkle it with some good old-fashioned drive and ambition. As Caroline says, “from the moment I started Mum’s Grapevine, I knew this was the thing I was meant to do, so I grabbed the opportunity and went for it.”
If you’re apprehensive about starting a new career, then just remember how you felt about the whole ‘becoming a new parent’ thing. You have embraced the job of raising a beautiful little person and, compared to that, a new career is child’s play! Have belief in yourself, take charge of your goal and see it through to the end.
3. Same skills, different job
One of the best things about changing career is learning new stuff. However, remember all those skills from your old job? Well, take those along for the ride.
Being a scientist might seem a long way from running Mum’s Grapevine, however, in between learning about online publishing, Caroline applied her existing skills to her new career. She says, “I’m a logical thinker, curious and a fanatical researcher. The analytical side of my early career laid the foundation for my Mum’s Grapevine work.”
4. Tenacious C
Once you’ve embarked on your new career (or the study that will lead to it), keep up the drive and determination that got you this far. Caroline’s tenacity, self-belief and perseverance have continued every day since Mum’s Grapevine started.
She says, “I love the fact that each day brings new challenges. It’s satisfying to find solutions and giving up just isn’t in my DNA. I also believe in the power of chocolate if it’s been a busy day!”
5. Your kids benefit too
There is a lot to love about a career change, and not just because you’ll be happy and fulfilled. You’ll also become a positive role model for your family, and your kiddo might just get in on the action!
Caroline says her son is part of the Mum’s Grapevine team. “Willie loves helping with colours and giving me feedback about ideas. He knows kids, because he is one!”
6. The right timing for you
For some parents, starting a new career happens quickly. Caroline recalls that “six months after launch, Mum’s Grapevine had over 20,000 mums on its database and was working with fifty businesses. It was all very exciting!”
For others, it can take time to press the ‘activate new career’ button. However, either way, a career change after parenthood is a fantastic opportunity to learn, grow and show your kids what you’re made of!
Take the first step
If you’re feeling a career change might be in the air for you, then start your journey with Careers Australia. And if you’re certain about the change, but not sure which way the air is blowing, then have a look at the Career Crush tool on their website. It can help you to find the type of study that will suit you best.
Whatever your career goal, Careers Australia can help you make a career change.
(This post is sponsored by Career Australia)