Flip Flopping

As I said in my previous blog, I haven’t got a clue what I want to do with my future yet and how I’m going to get there. I flip flop between possible careers like a fat kid in a sweet shop. I only know the RAF and I’m swayed by anything I see at the moment, all these fancy job titles sound exciting to me. One minute I’m thinking of owning a business to then wanting to renovate property. Deciding to change careers in the middle of a pandemic isn’t possibly the smartest idea either and it’s made me realise how lucky I am in the forces at the moment.

Anyway these are some of the possibilities I’m currently looking at:

MBA – Masters in Business Administration

A couple of years ago I started following some random guy on twitter who was an “Entrepreneur Guru” and this led me down a little rabbit hole where I became massively interested in entrepreneurship and running a business. I spent every day learning about brand awareness, search engine optimization, drop shipping, upselling, marketing, facebook adverts. In February this year I decided to have a go myself and created an online store selling women’s clothing, it was mainly summer dresses but started early to build brand awareness in time for the summer and was hoping to ramp up advertising by Easter, but then COVID happened and the rest is history. Although that venture was a failure I learned a lot and it’s something I may look to try again in the future, but with a different product. Business is probably my preferred option at the moment and where I can probably see myself in the future. I have no career goals yet, but completing this Masters would set me on the right path (I think). Running my own business is my ultimate goal (I think) but I’m not sure if the risk/reward ratio is worth it, especially as I currently don’t have any form of business idea or plan.

Investment Banker

This is an ultimate flip-flop and not something I’d ever thought about until last night. I saw an ex-forces testimonial about becoming an investment banker and the whole thing appealed to me. A lot of the skills acquired in the military are transferrable to the role and they recruit from all different sectors. I don’t have a financial background (obviously) but an MBA would be a foot in the door or I could do a Masters in Investment Management. Lots of firms do good internships to get people up to the required standard then it’s up to you to prove you’re capable.

Cyber

I have a first-class honours degree in cyber security and although I haven’t worked in this environment for a few years and don’t remember a lot about it, I’d be foolish to dismiss it. I have qualifications and experience so this feels like it should be my primary choice but it isn’t.

Intelligence

I’ve spent 20 years working in Intelligence and it’s the environment where all the skills I’ve learnt over the years can be best utilized. However I think I want to move into something different. It’s something to possibly fall back on but far from my first choice at the moment.

Project Management

What’s resettlement without Prince2. It seems like it’s the go-to course for most forces leavers and there are a lot of jobs which have it as a desirable qualification. I think I want to go a different path to project management and with only having 2 ELCs left it could possibly come down to a choice between Prince 2 and a Masters degree, which isn’t really a choice. It would be nice to maybe have it bundled into another course which would make it more appealing, but I think I’d prefer a Masters or IT qualifications over PM at the moment.

Renewable Energy

I’m not sure what I could do in this field, but it’s definitely going to plan an important part in the future and something I’m potentially looking into.

Property Development

This is an idea I get every time I watch Homes Under The Hammer, realistically I haven’t got any DIY skills or enough capital to start flipping houses but this could be a dream job.

These are some of the roles and qualifications I’m looking at currently, but by next week there could be another 5 on the list. If anyone wants to get in touch to discuss anything I’ve covered here, please do, I’m happy to talk about everything.

An Introduction (of sorts)

Firstly I’d like to apologise if you came here expecting an interesting blog about the Mafia, unfortunately you’ve just got me rambling on about how I can see myself as an investment banker when I leave the RAF, or maybe an Ethical Hacker or maybe opening a sandwich shop.

I’m not sure if anyone else feels like I do at the moment but I haven’t got a Scooby what I want to do yet. I’ve got 2 Enhanced Learning Credits (ELCs) left and I want to maximize them to make myself as employable as possible and that planning needs to start now. But I haven’t got a clue what I want to do when I finally leave the RAF. I’m not an 18 year old kid going off to Uni with my whole future ahead of me, I’m nearly 40 and the decisions I make over the next few months are going to have a massive bearing on my future and I need to make sure I get a decent job to provide for my family; it’s frickin scary.

So a little bit about me, I’m a Sgt in the RAF, I’m an Intelligence Analyst and have been in for around 20 years, I’ve decided to leave in the next couple of years and try something different. I’ve loved every minute of my time in the RAF and wouldn’t change any of it, it truly is a great caree. I’ve travelled the world and been to some stunning places (and some not so stunning), met amazing friends, I’ve been parachuting, sailing, scuba diving, mountaineering, rock climbing, skiing and every other form of Adventureous Training out there. But I’ve got to a point where I don’t want to move my family around every few years, I don’t want to miss my kids growing up while I’m stuck in a tent for 6 months on another deployment. I feel like I’m starting to get too old for all that, but I’m still young enough to embark on a new career.

A few years ago I had my whole future planned out, I was working in Cyber (and loving it) I’d completed a degree in Cyber Security and hoped to stay in the cyber environment till my 22 year point then PVR. But as it is with life in the forces, long term plans rarely come to fruition. My reward for doing well in cyber, was to get promoted and posted. I was a certified ethical hacker, certified in computer forensics, learning Python and now after 5 years away I haven’t got a clue about any of that and can’t even remember the OSI model (Please Do Not Throw Away Salami Pizza?). I look at job adverts in cyber security and don’t understand 90% of what the job requirements are so unfortunately for me I think that boat has sailed and I need to expand my horizons.

One of the good things about being in the RAF (but possibly a bad thing when trying to decide on a new career) is our versatility, I’ve worked in so many different roles and taken on so many extra duties I feel like I can perform in any role out there. But spending the past 20 years being versatile, I’m finding it difficult to focus on a specific goal and what role or industry I want to go into.

I’m extremely confident in my ability to do any job and I know that when I set my goal I’ll go for it 100%. But where do I start? I’ve got no finance experience, no business experience, no experience in the construction industry, I’ve spent 20 years in a very niche environment and at the moment I’m finding it hard to see where my skills would be best utilised. I know when I start resettlement properly and go on the Career Transition Workshop (CTW) it’ll emphasize all the skills I’ve acquired which I (we) take for granted – leadership, management, team working, communication, adaptability. These are at the core of our every day lives and it’s easy to take them for granted

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