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Career change: what does it take to become a tradesman?

For people who are considering becoming a skilled tradesperson in a mid-career change, acquiring the new skills needed to ply the chosen trade are just a small part of what must be taken into consideration if the move is to be a success.

The initial motivation that exists and the start of a career change can provide many fast-flowing thoughts, idea – even fears – but the task of turning them into a fruitful career requires a level head and some considered thoughts and actions.

Insurance company, Direct Line, has outlined a list of the key points that potential tradesmen must resolve as they embark on their new careers.

In terms of skills and training, is it important that a worker identifies the skills that he already has to see how well they can be incorporated into his new trade or transferred across. For most career-changers, the process of starting to earn money as a tradesman will not come over night and will require commitment to a training course where they will gain NVQs or other professional qualifications and skills.

And in terms of skills, it is important for a worker to identify exactly what field he or she wants to train for: if they’re thinking of targeting a particular area or discipline then it is imperative that they look at what additional resources and knowledge will give them the edge.

A good tradesman never blames his tools – but he must always ensure that he has a tip-top set of professional kit to accompany his new profession. While there will inevitably be some outlay on this, it is important to take inventory on what must be bought, borrowed or what pieces of equipment a tradesman already has.

Equipment brings up the matter of money and a budget: a tradesman will inevitably need a stash behind him to cover the equipment and the costs of getting up and running. A new tradesman will often need to slightly subsidise his own income with some savings or other sources as he works to establish his name.

And a business plan is essential, to make sure that no rash decisions are made, that strengths and weaknesses are identified and that budgets are set and adhered to, with a financial advisor or accountant regularly proving valuable in the setting out of a plan.