Pause, rewind, reset your career

Written by Rebecca O'Connor on 8th Aug 2017

How to get a grip on political and economic turmoil?

If, as you sunbathe on the beach this summer, you find yourself reflecting on the state of the nation and how things like Brexit, a divided Government and inflation are likely to affect you, you may find yourself wondering if the answer is to give up your salaried job and go it alone.

“Resetting” is the career trend of the moment and involves, basically, more and more people jacking it in and taking a giant leap of faith in themselves.

The research, from Click & Invest, the new investment management service from Investec, stops short of analysing the relative happiness, success or income levels of those that choose to take the independent route, but says that regardless, “unprecedented” numbers of people are making huge changes to their lives “because they have greater confidence in their own abilities, despite economic uncertainty, changing work patterns and less job and financial security.”

It says the trend has resulted in a stronger ‘can do’ attitude in society, and the report describes this trend of more people making radical changes to take control of their lives as ‘resetting’.

The report puts the number of British adults choosing to re-set as high as one third of the working age population, with a further 32 per cent planning on taking the jump into the unknown in the next five years.

Increased economic uncertainty following the General Election result in June is partly behind the rise, the report authors suggest.

Almost one third (30 per cent) of existing resetters have set up their own business and a further 22 per cent have made a hobby pay – a new group of entrepreneurs the report calls ‘Hobbypreneurs’. A further 30 per cent have changed careers to do something more rewarding.

This adventurous lot are also much more focused on financial planning and investments than the population as whole, the report found.

Commenting on the report, Viki Cooke, Founding Partner of Britain Thinks, said: “Our research identifies that across the population there is a move towards empowerment as people recognise that in a world of increasing uncertainty, they need to take control of their lives and ‘Reset’.  This has implications for work and careers, lifestyle and financial planning. We see this as a societal trend which is set to continue.”

Jane Warren, CEO of Investec Click & Investec said: “We commissioned this report to ensure that we really understand the way our clients are thinking.  What is exciting is that people are approaching their futures in a positive, planned and strategic way to ensure they live their lives the way they want to.  This includes carefully and considered financial planning and decision-making.”

Andrew Summers, Head of Collectives at Investec Wealth and Investment, highlights the benefits to UK PLC of the report’s findings: “Small businesses have long been the engine room of the UK economy, so the fact that more people are taking control and setting up their own enterprises is likely to have a positive impact across all sectors”.

Trust no-one, except yourself

The research reveals that across the population, there is a very positive attitude to making fundamental changes to the way we live our lives:

  • 79% agree “there’s no age limit on making a big change to your life”
  • 79% agree “I’d rather do something I love than something well paid”
  • 75% agree that “gaining life experience is more important to me than material wealth”

This is against a backdrop of huge political and economic uncertainty around Brexit, changing expectations of work with almost three quarters of respondents (71 per cent) recognising that there is no such thing as a ‘job for life’.  There’s also a greater onus on personal responsibility in terms of financial security with 87 per cent agreeing that being financial secure is important to achieving your goals.  These factors are providing impetus for people to take greater control of their lives.

Two groups of resetters

The report identifies two distinct types of resetters amongst those who have taken proactive steps to live their lives differently. 10 per cent of the population are ‘Recent Career Resetters’of which 68 per cent have changed their career to something they feel more passionate about in the last year, gone freelance (23 per cent) or set up their own business (26 per cent).

Their average age is 35, they are more educated (49 per cent have a degree compared to 29 per cent of the general population), less likely to own property (49 per cent compared to 61 per cent of the general population) and less likely to have children (48 per cent do not have children compared to 39 per cent of the general population).  They are also more likely to have some savings and investments (84 per cent versus 78 per cent for the general population).

The second group are the “seasoned resetters” which account for 19 per cent of the population.  This group has achieved both a career change and lifestyle change – 32 per cent have set up their own business and 26 per cent have made a hobby pay.  They tend to be older with an average of age of 52.  Almost three quarters (70 per cent) are property owners, compared to 61 per cent of the general population and are more likely to have higher value savings and investments.

Consistent across all ‘resetters’ is that they are driven, motivated hard workers.  They also ensure that the changes they make do not have a negative impact on them or those around them.  To do this, they plan in three ways – they ensure their financial security, strategically plan the changes they are going to make and ensure they are well connected making them well-placed to take advantage of opportunities when they arise.

These findings have major implications for the way that people in Britain today approach planning their futures as they seek to take greater control of their lives.  The changes are not random but strategic.  Resetting requires planning – particularly financial planning – to ensure that the goals people want to achieve are attainable.

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