When my grandchildren ask what was it like to have one career, I will tell them as they listen in the same way my kids do when I tell them about rotary dialing on a land line.
Half-kidding. But I lived the transition. I was a full time attorney, cultured entirely in the world of one career per person. Sure, some people switched to adjacent careers or different departments within the same companies but most stayed the course of whatever direction they set at age 22.
The main reason was guaranteed (95% chance) of employment with the same organization into the indefinite future. Given the choice between a stable paycheck, even in a dull job, versus uncertainty, even with the possibility of a more exciting upside, most will choose security.
When I become an education-entrepreneur in 2000, the only way most guys my age processed the decision was that I had found a business opportunity and was willing to take a risk in order to make a lot of money. My real friends heard the story of my “calling” to help others through education and counseling.
In building my first company, I also took different consulting gigs with education companies and taught college courses on the side. Each bolstered my income and made me part of the The freelancing world. This world has grown exponentially in the last decade.
As a career counselor, part of my work is helping people figure out how to make money outside of traditional one job structures. Showing career counseling clients how to freelance is often the first step towards understanding the new world of work. One career per person – no more. Embrace the change.