What Experts Won’t Tell You About Career Change

Career changes are often portrayed as a beacon of hope for those disillusioned with their current jobs, promising new opportunities, fulfillment, and even better pay. However, there’s a myriad of realities and challenges that experts often gloss over when discussing this significant life transition. Here’s a deep dive into what experts usually won’t tell you about a career switch, offering a more rounded perspective for those contemplating this big move.

1. It Can Be Financially Draining

Experts often encourage pursuing your passion, but they may downplay the financial instability that can come with changing careers. There may be a period where you’re not earning at all or might need to invest in additional education or training. Planning for these financial contingencies is crucial, yet often underemphasized.

2. You Might Start From Scratch

There’s a significant chance you’ll have to start a few rungs lower on the ladder than where you currently stand. This could mean less responsibility, lower pay, and having to prove yourself all over again—a humbling experience that can be tough to accept and is rarely discussed in depth.

3. The Grass Isn’t Always Greener

Career changes are often idealized as the solution to job dissatisfaction. However, every industry has its set of challenges, and the new one may not be as fulfilling as imagined. Experts often underplay the fact that dissatisfaction can stem from many sources, some of which might follow you into your new field.

4. Age Bias is Real

Switching careers later in life can be particularly challenging. Despite legal protections, age bias still exists, and older candidates may find fewer opportunities available to them. This reality is often overlooked in career advice, which tends to adopt a one-size-fits-all approach.

5. You Need a Strong Network More Than Ever

Networking is crucial, but its vital role in a successful career switch is often underestimated. In many fields, opportunities come through personal connections rather than job applications. Building a new professional network from scratch in a new industry requires significant effort and time.

6. Success Might Take Longer Than Expected

Patience is crucial. Experts often share success stories that highlight quick transitions and immediate success, which can set unrealistic expectations. The reality is that it might take several years to achieve the same level of success or satisfaction in a new field.

7. Your Identity Will Be Challenged

Your job can be a large part of your identity. Changing careers means reshaping how you see yourself and how others perceive you. This identity shift is a psychological aspect that is rarely discussed but can significantly impact one’s mental and emotional well-being.

8. Regret is Possible

It’s not uncommon to regret a career change, something seldom addressed by experts. Not every change leads to a happier scenario, and some may wish to return to their former career, which can be difficult or sometimes impossible.

9. You May Need to Relocate

Depending on your new chosen field, you might need to move to a city or even a country with better opportunities. This potential need for relocation and its impacts on your personal life are not always fully covered in career change advice.


Making a career change is undoubtedly a courageous decision that can lead to a more fulfilling life. However, it’s essential to go into this transition with eyes wide open, acknowledging both the potential benefits and the hurdles. By understanding these less-discussed aspects, you can better prepare for the realities of changing careers, ensuring you make informed decisions that align with both your personal and professional goals.