Despite seven in 10 people in the UK admitting they want to change their career, just a fifth (21%) have ever taken any action to try and move into a job they'll actually enjoy, according to research from LifeSkills created with Barclays. Though just 9% can say honestly they're in their dream job, fears of being 'past it' are holding many back.

Almost half of those questioned (48%) think that there's a cut off age to being able to make a career change, which is particularly profound in the younger generation. 13% of Gen Z-ers (18-24-year-olds) for example, don't think they'll be able to change jobs after they reach 30-years-old.

The thought of working on career development sends so many people cold in fact, that 34% would rather put themselves through a circuit class than working on their CV. Similarly, 33% would rather seek out a personal trainer than start to confront a job change with a careers advisor.

Though there are plenty of thoughts surrounding a change in career, the reality is that a successful move can be made at any point in a worker's life. Looking at those aged over 55 who have taken the plunge at some point in their career, research found that four in 10 (42%) say they did so when they were aged over 45.

Seven in 10 (71%) of those say it led them to be happy overall, with 60% describing it as the "best thing they've ever done".

To get people moving and help them reach their career goals, no matter what age, circumstance or industry they are in, LifeSkills created with Barclays has been extended to support everyone in the UK, across all ages. The programme will provide online advice and resources around the biggest areas of need for the workforce currently, such as introducing more workplace wellbeing, how to work flexibly, starting your own business and understanding the future workplace and some of the core skills needed. 

LifeSkills has also partnered with Nicola Adams OBE, former Olympic boxer to offer some top tips for people looking to enter a new career arena.

1. Make your own opportunities

When I started out boxing, there were very few opportunities for women to train or compete, so I learned early on that I had to make my own. Embarking on a career change has been the same; opportunities aren’t always handed to you on a plate, so I’ve needed to think about what I’m passionate about and go make it happen.

2. Use your existing skills in a different way

TV presenting is a world away from boxing, but I’ve treated facing a teleprompter for presenting jobs like I would any opponent in the ring. When I thought about it, the core skills are the same for each: needing to apply yourself with discipline to the task at hand. That mindset has seen me through to where I am today.

3. Do your research

I didn’t plan on retiring from boxing when I did, so I had to take a step back to think through what I wanted to do next. My advice before starting a new career would be to spend some time working out what you like and what you’re good at, and speak to as many people as you can about it, whether it’s friends and family, or people already in the industry you’re considering.

4. Get the advice you need

I’m entrepreneurially minded, and plan to set up my own chain of gyms one day. I’m in the stages of sussing out business plans, locations and investors, so have needed to get advice on how to go about doing this. It’s the same for any new business, whatever the size; make sure you’re getting help on how to navigate the practical aspects of launching your idea.

5. Don’t let anything daunt you

The journey to success is never a straight line - there’s bound to be ups and downs when making a new start. I’ve found that while things might not always go as expected, if you’re staying focussed, open minded and optimistic, you’ll get to where you want to be.

Research discussed was conducted by Opinium between January 7th-10th 2020. It polled 2,000 UK adults, weighted to be nationally representative, alongside 2,000 adults who are working, looking for work or on a career break.

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