1. Career Advice
  2. Career Path
  3. A deep dive in an encore career and why you should think about one
A deep dive in an encore career and why you should think about one

A deep dive in an encore career and why you should think about one

  • What is an encore career?
  • What are the benefits of an encore career?
  • How can I prepare for an encore career?  
  • 3 Encore career ideas
  • Key takeaways 

Revitalizing your career is an exciting prospect. An encore career provides the opportunity for talented retirees to rejoin the workforce or allow professionals to make a pivot. And with that comes a variety of benefits. Check out our deep dive on encore careers and why you should think about one.

If you’ve been successful in your first career, then why not repeat this performance via a second career? Perhaps you’re a retiree looking to rejoin the workforce and make a positive impact or you’re a professional targeting a passionate career.  

An encore career involves many new experiences and adventures, making this a revitalizing and rewarding “second act.” In this article, we explore:

  • What is an encore career?

  • What are the benefits of an encore career?

  • How can I prepare for an encore career?

  • 3 encore career ideas

Statistical Insight

According to a CNBC article, one in six retirees in the U.S. are considering a return to work following an average of four years out of the workforce. Respondents cited personal reasons (57%), money (53%), and boredom (52%) as the top three reasons.

What is an encore career?

An encore career can be defined as the second stage of your professional career, whether that’s setting out on a new career path following retirement or targeting a new career direction. Maybe you retired from a leadership role and you want to give back via work with a nonprofit. Perhaps you’re a teacher with a business idea that you’d love to pursue. Whatever the reason, finding a second career that blends your skills, experience, and passions is extremely rewarding.   

What are the benefits of an encore career?

An encore career can provide an exciting new adventure for retirees looking to return to the workforce or individuals keen to switch up their career. 

Here’s the four benefits that an encore career can offer:  

  • Personal fulfillment. Maybe you had a successful first career, but you didn’t get the opportunity to explore certain interests. An encore career offers an opportunity to pursue something that you’re truly passionate about.

  • Giving back. Encore careers allow you to give back to the community and make a meaningful impact on a cause you’re passionate about via work for a non-profit or voluntary agency.

  • Health benefits. Engaging in meaningful work during an encore career can provide a sense of purpose as well as keeping you active both mentally and physically. 

  • Work-life balance. Perhaps you need to take a step back from a demanding, 45-hour working week to have more balance; an encore career can provide that with part time or flexible working options.

Expert Tip

Don’t forget the added monetary bonus of a second career. An encore career can provide some valuable extra income for any unexpected financial commitments and make your life more comfortable.    

How can I prepare for an encore career?  

Here’s our step by step guide to preparing for an encore career and increasing your chances of finding a rewarding job second time around:

1. Identify the career you’re interested in

Start by exploring your skills, interests, and what you want to achieve in this next phase of your career. You also need to think about any financial needs and which working environment will  fulfill you. Consider the following questions:

  • What do I want to accomplish in the next phase of my life?

  • What skills and experience can I use to make a difference?.

  • What are my financial needs and can I meet them via my encore career?

  • What kind of work environment and culture do I want to work in?

2. Research and explore potential encore careers

Conduct some research on careers and industries that align with your interests, skills, and experience.  Factor in the types of jobs that are in demand. Apart from online research and networking, consider seeking guidance from a career coach or mentor.

3. Identify skill gaps

Investigate any additional education or training requirements needed to fill any knowledge gaps. Securing volunteer work or freelance gigs is a great way to get some hands-on experience and allow you to test the waters in your potential encore career.

3 Encore career ideas

There are plenty of options for an encore career and more flexibility to follow your passions after a successful first career. Here’s some encore career ideas to give you some inspiration:

  • Join a nonprofit. If you’ve a passion about a specific cause or issue and are keen to give back to the community, then joining a nonprofit can be a great choice for an encore career.  

  • Become a consultant or coach. Sharing your years of expertise by becoming a consultant or coach in your chosen field where you can offer guidance to clients is a fulfilling second career.

  • Embrace entrepreneurship. If you’ve an entrepreneurial spirit, then starting a business, either related to your previous career or exploring an entirely new venture, could be a great way to leverage your skills and experience.

For assistance with finding that ideal encore job, consult Career.io’s Job Search Strategy.

Key takeaways 

  1. Encore careers allow individuals to leverage their skills and experience while pursuing something they are truly passionate about in the second stage of their career.

  2. Assess which careers spark your interest, conduct research to explore these options, and identify any skill gaps you need to fill.

  3. Joining a nonprofit, furthering education, consulting or coaching, starting a new business—the encore career opportunities are endless! 

Share this article