How to Change Your Career in Your 30s

In college, it’s seen as perfectly normal to change your mind about what you want your career to be. It’s not altogether uncommon for someone to decide to study something totally different than what they entered college to study. The process to change your career, however, can feel much more daunting and consequential, especially when you’re in your 30s. In reality, people are most likely to make a career change in their 30s. There’s no need to remain in a career you are not happy with in your adult life, and changing your career may be easier than you think!

Why Change Your Career?

The first step in changing your career in your 30s is reflecting on why you want a career change and what you believe this change will bring to your life. Some people look to change careers because they are looking for a higher salary, they want a better work-life balance, or they have lost passion for their current industry. Changing your career can take some hard work and perseverance, simply because entering a new industry takes time. If you are comfortable with starting in an entry level position in a new industry, you are probably ready to make this big life change! Once you decide what job or industry you want to switch to, there are several options to help you get there.

Career Coaching

If you know that you want to change your career but have no clue where to begin, career coaching is a great option to help you get started. Career coaches are professionally trained to help people find new jobs. They are experts on analyzing your strengths and pushing you to be the best you can be, helping you progress in your industry of choice to shift into the career you want. Though career coaching costs money, it can save you money in the long run by helping you make smarter decisions and streamline your career changing process.


Networking is an important part of getting any job, and that’s no different when it comes to switching careers. Many industries have events that you can attend in order to meet prominent figures in your field of interest, such as other people your age who may be hiring or know of open positions at their company. If you are able to make a good connection in the industry you want to switch to, you may just be able to score a job that you’re passionate about. LinkedIn is a popular choice for networking, as it allows you to connect digitally with potential employers.

Job Search Websites

If you’re actively on the hunt for a new job, there are many websites that you can check regularly for new job listings. Indeed, Monster, Glassdoor, Linkup, and Wantedly Job Search are just some of many websites with job postings, and there are even some more specified websites to help you find remote jobs. Depending on what you’re looking for, websites designed specifically for job searching are a good way to organize potential opportunities.

Cold Emails

One of the most popular ways to get a job in the digital age is through cold emails, the more modern version of cold calls. Sending an email to a company that has no job listings posted may feel like a shot in the dark, but if you really want to work at a company, sending your resume with a request for a follow up could at most get you a job, and at very least get you a new networking connection. Sending a cold email to a company where you already have a connection can be a great idea, as inside connections can occasionally lead to a higher likelihood of getting the job.

Thriving in Your New Career

If you want to switch careers, it’s never too late to take the plunge. I recently heard a piece of advice from an older person: they remained a lawyer for fifty years because they spent so much time getting a law degree, but in the end they wasted more time in that career than they would have if they’d quit as a young adult. If you want to change your career in your 30s, you may be changing your future for the better, empowering yourself to find a new path that you will wholeheartedly love.