Social, Enterprising and Conventional Careers


If you are sociable and really enjoy working with people, this type of career is for you and includes things like teaching, training, medicine, nursing, social work and related careers.

And of course, these days we also have social media, which has created a load more careers that didn’t exist 20 years ago.

Look at the people you want to work with – kids, teenagers, adults, adults with learning difficulties, older people – and in what capacity – teaching, helping, training, healing?

Depending on your other interests, you could find something that combines several areas, for example if you love history or literature, you could teach the subject either at high school or university level and perhaps also write novels or textbooks, do research or create a related website.

If travel is on your list of things to do, look at the type of career that would allow you to do this – medicine, nursing or teaching can all be transferred to other countries (always find out if you need additional qualifications before taking the plunge).

Or you can think about creating a travel blog.


The internet has made it much easier for everyone to become an entrepreneur, but this type of job isn’t only for those who are self-employed. Managers, leaders in any industry, people who persuade, perform or infuence others in any way are enterprising.

You might enjoy a job where you have to give talks to groups of people – especially if they are about new developments you are involved in.  Most industries include research and development and so you could combine your enterpising nature with other preferences.

And of course, starting a small business is something you can do in your spare time. I will be writing articles specifically about business and if this is something you are intereted in, you can sign up for my free email series.


Convential careers sound a bit boring and for many people they are, but not if you are passion about them!  The type of job under this heading is accountant, book keeper, secretary, finance expert. Most of them seem to relate to money – that’s not a bad place to get started, unless, like me, you are useless at maths!

And if you can gain (and enjoy) skills in these conventional areas, they will stand you in good stead if you move to the higher echelons of a company or if you decide to branch out on your own.

And don’t forget the party and the 3 groups you were attracted to – can you combine them to find an area that you’d find inspiring?

Personality and Jobs

Have you chosen the three letters showing the types of career you are best suited to? If not, you can check out the post here:

Let’s have a look at some of the jobs suggested for each category – this might give you some ideas or at least get your imagination working. You could find a career you’d never considered, because you’ve either never heard of it or knew nothing about it. Or the jobs listed might give you some additional ideas.

Careers will contain elements from different categories and you can ask yourself if your 2nd and 3rd choice catgeories fit in well with something in your preferred category – or vice versa.


Careers suited to realistic personalities tend to be pretty hands-on. So if you are good with machines, great at building or fixing things, you can look at jobs that would enable you to use those skills. And of course, your own preferences and additional unrelated skills and knowledge you’d like to be able to use at work.

Engineering, architecture, urban planning, private security, forestry and technology are in this group and cover a broad range of careers. Some will need high level qualifications and so are only worth considering if you have the means to study at that level. But don’t let that put you off.

Technology is everywhere these days and most of us already have some skills and knowledge in that area. It’s not too difficult to get higher qualifications, as many courses can be taken online.

And there are also opportunities in horticulture, working in parks and zoos, if you also like nature and animals.

Food preparation is another hands-on occupation and worth considering if you enjoy cooking and related activities. Perhaps you enjoy baking and feel inspired by the Great British Bake Off and similar shows.

Perhaps you’d like to be a craftsman or woman, building your own furniture or making part for machinery.



This includes just about anything that involves searching and researching. So if you are inquisitive by nature and enjoy making discoveries this could be for you.  Do you enjoy solving puzzles, figuring out how things work, or do you love trying to solve a mystery?

Let’s think about some of the jobs in this group. Investigative journalism is one, if you enjoy writing and want some adventure in your life. Or you could consider becoming a private investigator or a Csi technician – but be aware that these two are not as glamourous as they appear on TV!

Research of any type – be it to help writers, advance medicine, improve education, understand demographics or economics. Most fields do have a related area of research. So look at the industries you are most interested in and then do a research to see what research opportunities exist.

You do need to be pretty patient too, especially if you want to make major discoveries in areas like science and medicine.

If you enjoy working with people, you might like to become a clinical psychologist or to do market research.  If IT is your thing,IT support and  troubleshooting or coding would all use investigative skills.

If none of these appeal, try searching jobs involving … (and add the activity you’d like to follow) for example, jobs involving problem solving. You can use several search terms, eg problem solving and medicine, problem solving and maths, problem solving and education.


This category covers pretty much the topics you’d expect – art, writing, drama, music, dance, cinema. It’s a great field if you have talents in any of these areas, but don’t forget that there are related jobs, if you love artistic pursuits but haven’t managed to make a living from them directly.

And don’t forget that technology has made working with art easier – there are openings as a graphic designer or website builder and you can learn the necessary skills by taking online courses.

Writing as a freelance is another newish career – many people are looking for content for their websites or for someone to ghostwrite their books for kindle.

Check out the other 3 groups here

How Important is Personality when Choosing a Career?

There are some theories about vocational choice out there – you’ve probably never heard of them – I hadn’t until I trained as a careers advisor.

Given that so little time and thought is generally devoted to careers guidance in schools and colleges, it’s hardly surprising that they aren’t talked about more widely.

John Holland’s theory is based on the fact that like attracts like, or that people who are similar hang out together and like particular types of job.

He characterised us as 6 types:

Realistic, Investigative, Artistic,
Social, Enterprising, and Conventional.

Jobs fit into these categories as well – you can guess quite easily where quite a few careers would fit.

Of course, human beings are a little more complex And so are likely to have tendencies from more than one of the six groups


People who are happiest with practical tasks, often involving tools or equipment. They aren’t so keen on working with people but enjoy work with plants or animals.


This group is made up of people with analytical minds, Often intellectual, they enjoy problem solving and research.


As well as art, music and drama, creative writing falls into this category. People who are artistic often choose unconventional careers and sometimes lack organizational skills.


This group enjoy working with people, which covers a wide variety of jobs involving teaching, training, healing, helping. They like teamwork
and discussion, but tend not to enjoy working with tools and machinery.


This group are good at influencing, selling, leading and of course setting up on their own.


Conventional types enjoy a more organized working structure and are dependable, good at routine administrative tasks and like to work with data in more traditional jobs.

To help you decide which combination of groups suits you best, Richard Bolles, author of What Color is Your Parachute, came up with a game called The Party, based On Holland’s theory.

Imagine that there are 6 groups of people at a party, each representing one of the groups above. Which one would you feel most drawn to? Once you’ve made your selection, write down the first letter. So S for social, E for enterprising etc. After 15 minutes, everyone in the group leaves – which group would you go to next? Then this group leaves, which one would you choose next? Now you have 3 letters.

Click here to find out more about the jobs best suited to each group:

6 Steps to Career Change

Making a career change can seem like a huge undertaking – and that is often the reason people don’t do it. So let’s break this down into 6 steps to make it more manageable.

Step #1 Make an Assessment of Your Present Situation

When you were first starting out in the world of work, that is when you were in your teens or twenties, you probably felt you could do just about anything and had big dreams when you thought about what you could achieve.

But now you are a bit older, and althought you have plenty of new experiences regarding work, as well as skills and general life experiences, you are likely to be more cautious than the younger you. So the first step to take before embarking on a midlife career change, is to make an honest and accurate assessment of your current situation

Step #2 Choose Your Ideal Work Location

You’d also need to consider where you want to work.To begin with, think in general terms of location and refine this further once you have finished step 3. Would you prefer to work in an urban setting or in the country, do you want to be indoors or outdoors, and in your home country or abroad? Or do you want a job which includes travel? What would this mean to you, ideally? Regular trips abroad to different locations or travelling within your own country ?

When making a midlife career change, you may find you are in a position to move around more easily than before, for example, if your children have grown up.

Step #3 Decide What You Want Your Career Change to Be

Considering all your work and other experiences so far, write down a detailed description of your perfect job.Don’t forget to include aspects of your current and past jobs which you enjoy. And remember to write down all the new skills you want to learn and develop.

Step #4 Research

The next step is to research the jobs which match your skills, dreams and aspirations. Let’s take an example, say you are a teacher and you are looking for a new career with travel and languages, you could start by searching for a general term such as “other jobs for teachers”. Create a list of possibilities which appeal to you, and then start looking to see how you can get into you ideal career.

Be as creative as possible when choosing search terms, combine several different skills in one search and who knows what interesting jobs you might find!

Career websites and work-related sites set up by the goverment are a good place to search. You can start with broad areas like education, technology or healthcare and then check out the wide range of opportunities, as well as being able to read job descriptions and information about areas like training, pay and promotion prospects. Many will have a specific section for midlife career change.

Step #5 Your Career Change – Putting It All Together

Now you need to lool at what you want, compare it with the careers you have discovered and go through the results to find a match. There will be jobs which you just aren’t interested in and others which would be difficult for practical.

reasons. But if you have done your research in detail you are more than likely to have found several possible options.

Once you have narrowed your choices down to ta couple of alternatives, it’s time for more in-depth research. Websites relating directly to these careers will help you learn more. So look for sites belonging to relevant companies as well as sites with careers information and get as much detail as you can. If you can, talk to folk who are working in these careers. This will really help you understand what the job is actually about.

Another option is to book a session with a careers advisor or go to a careers library and find books designed to help people entering the profession.

Step #6 Create Your Action Plan and Make Sure You Take Action 🙂

Get out a pen and paper and map out a plan with the steps you need to follow to reach your goal. don’t forget to think about how you will pay for any training and how the changes will fit into your lifestyle. You may need to discuss this with some members of your family, especially partners and children who still live at home, since this might involve significant changes which affect them too.

Career change can be a challenging and rewarding experience, as long as you take the time to plan it properly and to discuss it with your family

Career Change Resume

Resume writing can be tricky at the best of times, but what if you are changing career? Creating an effective career change resume is a big challenge.When all of your work experience relates to a different field from the one you want to get in to, creating a resume which will convince an employer you are the right person for the job is tough.

So, how do you write a professional resume aimed at an area you’ve never worked in before?

The answer is that you write a skills based resume, ,that is, ,you don’t list your jobs in chronological order as you would do if you were looking for something similar to your present post. Instead, when you are creating a career change resume, you need to focus on what you can offer the employer, rather than on your previous jobs.

Of course, some of the skills and experience gained in your previous jobs will be highly relevant to the new position, but it’s up to you to extract that information and present it in a way which shows the employer right away that you can do the job.

The first step is to read the job description and determine exactly what the employers are looking for. Make a list of the main skills and experience they are after and focus on the essentials first. Now you need to match these skills with your own and you need to find experience which is similar.

If you have any problems with this, you should think about why they are asking for certain experiences. Some will be obvious – if they want you to be able to use a certain software program, that’s a skill you need. However, if they want someone who is a good team player, there are many different situations in which you could have gained the necessary skills.

Find the most important skills and create 3 or 4 headings which cover them all. Under each heading give an example of several related skills. So for example, using the heading Communication Skills, you could use written communication such as report writing, presentations given to groups of people and one to one oral communications as three examples. Be as detailed as you can in the examples and give numbers and percentages if you can.

If you have relevant work experience, you can use that as another heading and list the jobs which relate to the new post. Otherwise, you can have a brief list of employers towards the end of your resume.

The important thing is to identify what the employer wants and make sure you give plenty of strong examples at the top of the page or on the first page if you create a 2 page resume.

Writing a career change resume takes a bit of thought but it is not difficult if you follow this system.

Career Change at 40+

If you are considering making a career change in midlife , you know it won’t be easy, but it can be exciting. If you are in your 40s or 50s and thinking of going back to work now that your kids have grown up, you probably have a few concerns about getting back into the job market. In fact, an increasing number of women in this age group will have no choice but to go back to work, due to the present pensions crisis and possibly because they have a Kipper or two floating around the house.

If you’re unfamiliar with the term Kippers, that doesn’t mean you live in a fish-free zone! Kippers stands for Kids in Parents’ Pockets Eroding Retirement Savings – a growing phenomenon in most developed countries. In fact, the Japanese have an even more derogatory name for their Kippers – they are known as parasite singles!

So, the kids you thought would have flown the nest are still at home, probably trying to pay off their student debts and having difficulty getting the job they really want. Consequently, the need for increased income is greater than you might have anticipated. With a tough job market out there, you’ve been putting off the inevitable career decision making process.

 You need to sit down and assess your transferable skills, examine specific job titles and descriptions to see which ones fit your preferred skills and experience and look at the possibility of returning to study, either to gain professional qualifications, to improve existing skills or to acquire new ones, perhaps related to information technology. Changing careers at any age requires thoughtful deliberation and tis site is designed to help take you through that process step by step.

Don’t be discouraged by people who tell you it’s going to be difficult – whatever your situation, whatever your skills or experience, there is a way forward. Age discrimination is against the law in many countries and since October 2006, the UK has been added to the list, but despite this, employers will still often favour younger employees. However, there are areas in which maturity is valued in the workplace and there are plenty of ways in which you can beat the system by creating your own employment.

In this section, we’ll look at how to write a CV, plus some more CV tips, and jobs in which you might consider working, some tips on goal setting for your career, making the best careers choices and self-employment at 40 . You might decide that it’s time to take a career break.