I am turning 53 in a few weeks. As I reflect back on where my career started and where I am now I so excited about my own "Chapter 2". When I was young I thought I wanted to be a teacher. However, I spent hours upon hours playing some form of "store". I was even lucky enough to have a real cash register for each of my stores and locations. Once I entered high school and there was talk of planning for my future my favorite teacher of all time talked me out of going in to teaching and steered me towards a career in retail. For me, the best part of my career was the time spent with great customers and being part of some awesome teams. I have since "retired" from retail for other worthwhile ventures. My son's senior year of high school was the year I started to plan my "Chapter 2". I wanted the best part of the career I had loved to work with the lifestyle my husband and I had grown to love. After much consideration, research, and yes - prayer my new business was started. Your Closet Your Style is all about me working with clients to help them be the best they can be starting with their wardrobe. I truly believe if you feel great in what you are wearing and how you look, you will have not only more confidence but will be happier overall.
Another thing I learned a long time ago was to surround yourself with people smarter than you, and experts in areas you are not. One of the people I love to be around is my friend and past co-worker, Tina Nicolai. Tina and I worked together a long time ago traveling all over the country hiring teams to run warehouse sales. Tina has since gone on to great things including starting her own successful company that creates unbelievable resumes and provides personal coaching as well as other services. Tina has been successful in her own "Chapter 2" so there was no one better to collaborate with on this piece.
I posed several questions to Tina looking for advice all of us could follow they are below in bold. Her answers follow. There are some serious nuggets of wisdom for you!
I believe many women over age 40 are searching for what I like to call their “Chapter 2 Career”. Many are moms, some are not. Many have had corporate jobs for the past 20 plus years. Some had corporate careers and then stepped away from that to stay home with kids. Now, the kids are grown and women are ready to begin their next chapter.
As an experienced coach, recruiter, entrepreneur and a woman who has begun her own Chapter 2, would you give your top tips for beginning this new journey?
“Chapter 2 can be daunting for some, while invigorating for others. It really depends on how we choose to navigate our course. Top tips include:
*Be confident. Sear your strengths into your mind by accepting them with 100% appreciation.
*Commit to developing your strengths with irreverent passion.
*Cut anything and any drama from your life that feels like you are tethered to a post. This includes people who are negative and non-supportive.
*Invest your time into what you love. If you love to blog, do it. If you love helping at a shelter for homeless or animal rescue, do it. Throw your heart into whatever it is you love. When we are passionate, we do our best and everything falls into place.
*Be patient with your set-backs. They are all temporary.
If you’re Chapter 2 was non-voluntary (eg Job Loss) grieve for a bit, but do not allow yourself to stay in a victim mode for any extended period of time. It’s normal to grieve and have self-doubt, but the sooner you move yourself into the thought process of, “I have a clean slate and fresh start” mindset, the quicker your Chapter 2 will manifest and take off.”
Perhaps some tips for getting back in to the corporate world such as interviewing now vs maybe 20 years ago. Then some tips for if starting their own business, regardless what it is, and the differences between the two as you see it.
Best tips to begin a Chapter 2 is to start a small business, volunteer, or combination of both. Update all of your social media sites, specifically Linkedin.com and consider starting a business or blog page on Facebook. Re-brand yourself and tell others what you are doing. If you’re doing a small start-up and you’re skilled in marketing, showcase, tweet, post, blog, and/or share your progress. People gravitate to positive and fresh new products or services on the social sites. Not good with the written word? Fall into instagram and post captivating images of the products or services that you offer. Using a simple smart phone is all that you need.
One of the major set-backs most people have is putting up roadblocks such as, “I need to have XYZ to start a business.” Nonsense. All you need is drive, self awareness of what you love, and an appreciation of what you offer.
Tina Kashlak Nicolai, Chapter 2, CEO/Founder Resume Writers’ Ink and Talent Acquisition Partner for a global retail corporation. After 25 years of corporate HR, Tina found herself earning a pink slip during the 2009 recession. She rebuilt herself by starting her executive resume and coaching business. Six years later, she was scouted and hired to work for a global retail brand in talent acquisition. Today, she juggles both careers and is currently writing a book. www.resumewritersink.com
I love the last bit of wisdom from Tina where she says in part "...all you need is drive, self awareness of what you love, and an appreciation of what you have to offer," Dress your confidence and your ability to present your skills and goals, and then dress yourself to match and you are sure to be successful.