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Making a Change

Is it time for your career to be something more?

By Robert G. Epstein

It happens to many professionals. You're on a career track you began in your college days, if not before, and suddenly it's ten years later and you're not sure where to go next. Some call it a "mid-career crisis," but it happens at different times for different people. For some it's only 2 years into a career; for others it comes after 25 years in a profession.

You have to ask yourself, "Do I really enjoy what I do?" If you spend eight or ten or twelve hours a day doing something, it better be something you can take pleasure in. Unfortunately, that's simply not the case for many professionals. Some people may never realize this. For others, the mid-career crisis makes us look at what we are doing and why. Many professionals are afraid to make the career change that could make them happy. It's not an easy move. After a long career in specific field, it can be tough to make the switch to something new. But it can be worth the fight.

During more challenging economic times, reevaluating a career is probably not the first option that comes to mind. But in reality, layoffs and downsizing often provide the perfect opportunity to rethink what you're doing with your career. Take the time to consider how you can turn a negative into a positive and steer your career in a new direction. It is also a challenging time for the accounting profession right now.

For those of us dealing with the issues plaguing our industry, recent events might take a toll on our own career goals and aspirations. If all of the negative talk has got you thinking your current job might not be the right place for you, take this chance to consider your options and try something different. Don't let the industry's image get you down! Learn more about opportunities in private industry or government work.

On the other hand, if all of the negative talk has got you thinking you want do even more for the profession, dive deeper into the public accounting community and make a difference. Be a hero by dutifully defending the rights and interests of investors and the public. Get active in your professional organizations and be a part of the solution.

The key to a career change is thinking it through. Evaluate your feelings, the state of the profession and what you really want to be doing. If you enjoy what you do, you won't sit at your desk counting the hours until the end of the day and you'll have a great sense of accomplishment about the things you achieve throughout your career. The change involved may be challenging, but the end result is the definition of a truly successful career.

Robert G. Epstein, CPA, is the President and CEO and one of the orginal founders of CareerBank.com. He is a certified public accountant with more than 15 years of experience in the accounting profession and accounting/finance career placement industry. Robert writes articles covering the accounting industry, career development and staffing. He has been interviewed by Fortune, CFO.com, CNN.com, Reuters, Accounting Today, Business Finance Magazine, Practical Accountant and many other leading business publications and news services.
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