As we get it older it may seem that our career prospects may shrink as our age increases. However there are in fact always opportunities for further training for those who want to gain a new skill, regardless of their age.
While training is still seen by many as something that you do when you are younger or in university while still struggling to pay off your student loan and those mounting piles of debt, learning and studying towards a new skill or vocation when you are over the age of thirty is something that is becoming more common place among adults looking for a change of direction at a later stage of their life.
Why do adults train later in life?
Adults choose to study for many different reasons, many of which may be very personal and based on individualised factors or unforeseen circumstances. A retail worker who has worked within a retail and customer focused environment for a number of years may suddenly find themselves made redundant as a result of job cuts and the downfall of the British high-street. And while working behind a till and having the skills to interact with difficult customers is certainly a skill within itself, with a lot of businesses now turning to online experiences, that direct face to face expertise may not be relevant in a business that is constantly evolving to a more digital based platform.
Why you should always be striving to learn
The fact of the matter is that age should not determine our adaptiveness to learn, and an age of an individual should not be the deciding factor of the peak of their learning growth of a new ability and skill.
The UK Government released a report in 2016 highlighting the barriers of adult learning, with lack of time and the lack of financial resources available to train to further gain new skills. But while these situations may be a factor in your decision in taking the time to train to learn a new skill, what about if a constantly advancing business sector dictates that you have to expand your skill repertoire.
Take social media for instance. Who would have thought that almost 10 years ago an entire profession would be based around social media and its many functions, whether that be audience engagement to marketing and analytics? These skills were not something that would be originally envisioned, but instead have developed as technology and society have evolved. Now it seems that every start-up and high-ranking business has a social media manager at the helm of their digital strategy.
The key is to never become dormant and slumber into comfortability, but to always expand your own knowledge and prowess in your chosen field of expertise, but to also consider other skills outside of your initial capacity that may benefit you as the business sector advances and transforms.
The saying that age is nothing but a number certainty rings true in a lot of different aspects of life, but when it comes to learning new skills this definitely couldn’t be more accurate. Regardless of where you fall on the age spectrum, learning a new skill and stepping out of your comfort zone and familiarity should not be something to be feared, but to be embraced with the kind of enthusiasm and commitment you originally had when you originally began your first job or career.
Those skills you use everyday within your profession were not inherited but were learnt, developed and mastered. Who say’s that age should prevent you from mastering another skill.