Life is packed with valuable experiences, from travelling the world to bringing up kids. But if you find one of these experiences particularly fulfilling, it could be the key to an awesome new career. Read on to discover where your life experiences could lead you.
Whether it’s gallivanting around Europe during your gap year or moving abroad for work, there are many benefits to immersing yourself in a different culture for more than a couple of weeks. Travelling overseas will increase your confidence, improve your language skills and make your more culturally aware. You’ll also face challenges that will push you out of your comfort zone, leading to greater adaptability and better problem-solving skills
Because they’re incredible transferable, these skills will come in handy whatever job you do, but if you’ve really been bitten by the travelling bug, why not consider a travel centred career?
Careers that involve travel:
A selection of writing samples and experience of travelling are all you need for this fulfilling career. The time you’ve spent in a particular country should enable you to write about it with passion, inspiring your readers to visit. Travel writers tend to work on a freelance basis, contributing to major newspapers, magazines, websites and travel guides. This a very competitive niche, so you may need to supplement your income by finding additional writing jobs.
Becoming a holiday rep
Fancy accompanying holidaymakers on excursions and introducing them to the local area? Then you could become a holiday rep with a tour company. As well as taking tourists out and about, reps oversee hotel transfers and provide practical help when problems arise. The benefits of being a travel rep include free accommodation, free or cheap food and discounted holidays. However, you’ll need to be flexible and energetic, as you’ll be working long hours. Most tour companies require their reps to have four GCSEs, an industry qualification and a working knowledge of at least one foreign language.
Over 250,000 people are currently employed in the foreign aid sector. If you’ve witnessed poverty during your travels abroad, you may return home with a deep desire to make a difference. Charities employ humanitarian workers from a wide range of career backgrounds, so it could be worth finding out if your skills are in demand. Charity roles that involves travelling are very popular, so we recommend choosing a cause you’re truly passionate about. You can then increase your chances of getting a job by volunteering to help with a particular project or starting off in a UK based role.
Teaching English abroad
If you’re good with grammar, you could consider moving abroad to work in an English language school or college. To teach in Europe you’ll need a TEFL (Teaching English as a foreign language) qualification or a TESOL (Teachers of English to speakers of other languages) certificate. Some language schools also ask for two years of experience, but summer jobs are often open to newly qualified teachers. If you struggle to find work once you’ve qualified, it’s worth checking out schemes like The British Council’s English Language Assistant Scheme, which offers placements lasting up to a year.
Do you dream of becoming a foreign correspondent for the BBC or Sky? Before you begin job hunting, you’ll need a degree in journalism or a degree in another subject followed by a postgraduate journalism qualification. Make sure that this is accredited by the NCTJ. If you’re a film fanatic or passionate about preventing climate change, check out the job listings for entertainment and environmental journalists, as they also cover global stories.
Weddings took place in the UK in 2018
UK weddings are now worth over ten billion pounds per year
The ability to multitask is essential if you’re planning your own wedding. From arranging the venue to choosing a dress, there are so many things to think about! While some people find coordinating all the different elements an extremely stressful experience, others seem to thrive on it. So if planning weddings sounds like your perfect career path, how about turning professional?
As well as taking control of each couple’s budget and negotiating fees on behalf of their clients, wedding planners source potential venues, suppliers and services. They also produce styling ideas that capture each couple’s vision and provide a detailed wedding day schedule. When the big day arrives, planners prevent panic by ensuring that everything runs smoothly. While a career change to wedding planning can be extremely rewarding, it also involves working long and irregular hours in order to meet with couples, provide support and attend weddings. If you become a planner you’ll also be the main point of contact for every supplier.
Other wedding careers:
There are plenty of other creative careers on offer in the wedding industry, so if you’re a talented baker, photographer or dressmaker, why not find out if there’s a market for your services? You could also join your local wedding industry group on Facebook and visit a few wedding fairs.
Joanna Miller was inspired to start her business, Bespoke Verse, after performing a poetic speech at her own wedding. The speech was such a success that the former English teacher received a deluge of requests for poetry. After a while, she had to stop working from her kitchen table and hire extra staff to help her meet demand.
Bespoke Verse now has a team of five writers who deliver over 500 personalised poems a year. The company also sells stationery, homeware and poetry prints which are stocked by major retailers including John Lewis.
The wedding industry is very competitive, so if you like the idea of a wedding related career change you’ll need to do your research. To find out whether there’s a market for your services, we suggest joining a local wedding industry group and attending a few wedding fairs.
Parents who take a career break to care for their kids often fear becoming unemployable. In fact, bringing up children involves developing many of the soft skills that employers value. These include the ability to communicate, listen, solve problems, manage your time, be organised, multitask and stay calm in a crisis.
If having kids is the most rewarding thing you’ve ever done, why not consider using your parenting skills to inspire other people’s children? There’s a huge range of careers on offer.
Careers working with kids:
Becoming a parent also inspires some people to set up own their business so that they can fit work around family life. Here’s one example.
When London mums Lucy Woodhouse and Meriel Kehoe became friends, they discovered that they were both passionate about cooking nutritious but delicious family food. Frustrated in their search for a healthy alternative to ice cream, they decided to create their own.
After months of trials, the ladies’ frozen Greek-style yoghurt lollies went down incredibly well, so they took the plunge and entered a competition that offered them the chance to pitch their creations to buyers. Amazingly, Lucy and Meriel made the finals and were awarded a 12-month contract with Sainsbury’s. Claudi & Fin lollies are named after the friends’ children Claudia and Fin, and you can still find them the frozen aisles.
Cared for a parent
Over a million people in the UK are looking after both children and elderly parents.
Ever heard the term “the sandwich generation”? It describes a generation of middle-aged people who are “sandwiched” between caring for their kids (who can’t afford to leave home) and supporting their elderly parents. While life can be stressful for people in this situation, caring for elderly parents can be incredibly rewarding and could even lead to a new career.
Caring for an elderly or infirm person requires compassion, empathy, patience and excellent communication skills. You’ll also need to be reliable, kind and respectful. If you have these qualities and you enjoy your caring role, why not think about retraining to work in social care?
People in the Uk work in the social care sector
More workers will be needed by 2030 according to NHS
Personal assistant/ care worker/support worker
Personal assistants help people to live independently in their own home. Tasks might include going shopping, accompanying clients to appointments, cleaning, cooking and sometimes personal care. Care workers carry out similar tasks in care homes or day centres, whereas support workers tend to offer extra help such as cooking lessons or advice on budgeting.
Based in care homes and day centres, activity workers organise individual and group activities designed to enhance their clients’ quality of life. Responsibilities include finding and booking suppliers as well as organising trips out.
Qualifications you’ll need
Entry level roles in social care normally require core skills in English and maths, as well as a level two Diploma in Health and Social Care. This is normally completed on the job. If you want to specialise in a particular area such as dementia care, you’ll need a <a href=”/courses/level-3/” target=”_blank”>level three diploma</a>, whereas senior roles may require a <a href=”/courses/level-4/” target=”_blank”>level four qualification</a>.
The NHS also runs a Graduate Management Programme which involves a 12 month work placement with a social care organisation. Participants gain two valuable qualifications.
You can probably think of many more experiences that have enriched your life, developed your skills and helped you to become more resilient. So if you’re not keen on your current job and you’d like to find work in a different field, why not consider whether one of these life experiences could lead to an exciting new career?
Browse Courses Today