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Should I change industries? Advice from experienced people needed

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  1. #1
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    Default Should I change industries? Advice from experienced people needed

    Hi all. First time here and great forum. Not sure whether it is right place to post here but need some advice.

    Here's my situation. By profession, I'm in the medical field (I'm a dentist). Now, there are definitely advantages to being what I am but there are also some bid drawbacks.

    Advantages:
    - there will always be work
    - earnings are attractive
    - helping people get out of pain
    - 9-5 work hours

    Drawbacks:
    - very isolated (stuck in one room all day)
    - can be stressful at times, especially working in small, tight spaces

    One of the biggest drawbacks is that I am very isolated. I love working with my hands, but do not enjoy being stuck in one room all day. I like the idea of working together in a team to achieve a goal ............ so I was wondering what it would like to be in the buliding and construction trade?

    For those in the industry, how would you advice me to step into the industry and have a feel of what it would be like, before plunging head on into it and finding out that it really wasn't what I thought it would be. At present, I'm 30 and own my own business, so I know what it is like to do hard work. I don't mind the physical aspect of trades ............... I prefer that to mental stress which as a dentist we are often subject to. I also feel as I am still relatively young, to change industries is not too late, but I also need to keep in mind the financial requirements of my family as well.

    Any advice would be great. Thanks in advance.

  2. #2
    Hammer Head - 1K Club Member
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    why not buy an old house and do it up and work lese hours at your current job, say dont work friday and monday as a denesit but work on the house.

  3. #3
    1K Club Member jago's Avatar
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    Thats good advice...spend some money and dip your toe.Just dont buy a complete bomb or you could hate both your jobs...lol

  4. #4
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    Become a builder then ppl will hate you in both your jobs......

  5. #5
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    Lol Brickie. I did consider the idea of buying a house and doing it up, but the thing is, for a person with no knowledge or experience renovating, it seems to be jumping into deep water.

  6. #6
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    Hey Drewy, I am in the same business as you and also have considered the exact same thing (more so after doing lots of work around our new house to fix what I feel is substandard work- I really enjoy the hands on and satisfaction of a job well done). We also did all the electrics for our house and I had a great time compared with a normal day at the orifice. Dentistry is ageing me prematurely

    Problem is I have a few mates in the building trade and they all earn significantly less than I do AND they are also over their work too ha ha ha. I think unless you own your own business or franchise then income would definitely suffer. If I could earn about what I do now and take up a trade where I can be hands on and reduce the stress I have I would change jobs in the blink of an eye!! Other option is to get a trade and go up to Roxby or the like, work a few weeks on a few weeks off.... My mates that do this earn a VERY decent living.

    I am interested in where you go with this

  7. #7
    Senior Member TermiMonster's Avatar
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    Drewy,
    ....Don't do it before talking to some real live, on the ground tradies....Most will kill themselves laughing....don't get me wrong, (I'm a chippie) being a trady is good fun, especially when you are young, but some trades (Carpentry and some others) are very hard on the body. You would be absolutely crazy to leave a job as a dentist, to become a tradie.
    Just start working 3 days a week as a dentist, buy an old house, and work on that for 3 days a week. (Do full days)....If by the time you've finished the house, you still want to be a tradie (bearing in mind, you will probably still be taking a pay cut (from the 3 days as a dentist versus 5 days as a trady)), then go for it.
    my 2cents
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    Ps: unless you become a plumber, of course. Easy trade and those b*****ds absolutely rake it in. (Ducks and runs)
    Last edited by TermiMonster; 26th Jul 2010 at 05:51 PM. Reason: joke

  8. #8
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    As for taking on a reno when you have no background - well, I have done just that. I was lucky enough to have the odd friend who had experience in the building trade to help guide me through the tricky bits, but basically I have started from scratch and much of the work I have done myself.

    Changing careers is a scary thing. I have done it twice now. The first time was terrifying, but ended up being a very positive move on a personal level and also provided the sort of income that allowed me to take this second 'career' change into living my life the way I want to.

    So I guess you first need some hands-on experience if you are feeling nervous about the whole idea (and the reduced hours and practical work is an excellent suggestion), and then you need to decide which of the trades you actually want to pursue, having had a go at them all (albeit as a labourer or off-sider in the electrical and plumbing side of things).

  9. #9
    2K Club Member chrisp's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by drewy View Post
    By profession, I'm in the medical field (I'm a dentist).

    ............ so I was wondering what it would like to be in the buliding and construction trade?

    Wow! What a dilemma to have - half your luck!

    On a slightly more serious note, I'm not too sure how the part-time tradie, part-time dentist idea would work out. It would seem to me that tradie work will punish your hands somewhat and it may be unappealing to go to a dentist who has the hands of a plumber.

  10. #10
    1K Club Member Master Splinter's Avatar
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    I'd love to move into something like plumbing or electrical work...but three years at slave (sorry, apprentice) wages to get qualified puts it out of reach, financially.

    I think that's the problem with many of these mid-stream changes - so many options are shut off as you can't take the income hit while you do your requisite hours to either get connections/qualifications or hands on experience.
    DIY electrical wiring to AS/NZS3000 - details here - http://goo.gl/9d33T (PDF file)

  11. #11
    4K Club Member ringtail's Avatar
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    Lets be honest here, a dentist makes more money in half a day than any tradie makes in a looooooong week. If you want to " try it out ", put a locum in your practice for 6 months and become a labourer for a small builder who will teach you a few things.

    x 2 with termimonster - plumbers absolutely rake it in for very little " hard on the body " type work. ( not saying they dont work hard, but they are not even close to hard yakka like a chippy is.)

  12. #12
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    Thanks all for the advice.

    Quote Originally Posted by NickH View Post
    Hey Drewy, I am in the same business as you and also have considered the exact same thing (more so after doing lots of work around our new house to fix what I feel is substandard work- I really enjoy the hands on and satisfaction of a job well done). We also did all the electrics for our house and I had a great time compared with a normal day at the orifice. Dentistry is ageing me prematurely

    Problem is I have a few mates in the building trade and they all earn significantly less than I do AND they are also over their work too ha ha ha. I think unless you own your own business or franchise then income would definitely suffer. If I could earn about what I do now and take up a trade where I can be hands on and reduce the stress I have I would change jobs in the blink of an eye!! Other option is to get a trade and go up to Roxby or the like, work a few weeks on a few weeks off.... My mates that do this earn a VERY decent living.

    I am interested in where you go with this
    Wow, a fellow dentist in the same boat !!!!!! Never thought this would happen. NickH, what else have you considered in order to alleviate your disastisfaction with being a dentist? I have also considered a management role, but there is not much else of a career to climb as a dentist - the pinacle is pretty much owning your own practice.

  13. #13
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    At work I try to challenge and better myself- now days I try to focus on more complex dentistry like implants, cosmetics and full rehabs. Unfortunately this seems to add more stress.... I try to focus more on life outside of dentistry. Work less BUT work wiser- more money, less stress. Four days a week nine-five then shut off. Why don't you employ an assistant dentist and work less?

    Other than my family, my real passion is music- has been for as long as I can remember. I spend a lot of time writing, performing and recording. Most of my free cash (none of that nowadays) has been spent on music toys (and cars, bikes, guns, fishing ha ha ha ha). Building and doing hard labour around the house has taken over though, hence me being on this site a lot. It is never ending!

    As others have said, the problem with getting into a trade is the training and associated poor wage and years on the bottom rung.

  14. #14
    The Master's Apprentice Bedford's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by drewy View Post
    Any advice would be great.
    You are very fortunate to have been able to do the schooling to become a Dentist, not everyone has that opportunity.

    When the recession "we had to have" hit in the early nineties, there were heaps of professional people made redundant, but there were very few jobs in the offering.

    What a lot of these people did was start businesses in other fields in competition with people who had been doing it all their lives. A lot of these jobs had to be tendered for, and it is very difficult to win the tender when you are new to an industry, competing with people that know the costs.

    When they couldn't win the tender they started under quoting to win the jobs, then couldn't complete them.

    The end result of this, was that they dragged the whole industry down in the process, destroying some contractors and themselves.
    Posted by John2b, And no, BEVs are not going to save the planet, which doesn't need saving anyway.

  15. #15
    Not A Seagull Armers's Avatar
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    What i would give to become an electrician now... i keep getting we'll call you and @@@@ like that... i am getting to old apparntly.. I keep getting comments like "you want to go on low wages?!"

    My Technical qulification (my papers) I am a Commercal Cook. yet i've got extencive IT experence and i am now working with PayTV

    There are plenty of oppertunities to do work... i suggest you do some work experence... aka your house and then see how you go. Sometimes a major life change is awesome some times a major dog @@@@...

    see how you go!

    Cheers

    Ps don't take my comments as gospel, i am still only 28yrs old... so still a youngen in the gran scheme of things!

  16. #16
    1K Club Member Gooner's Avatar
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    Interesting thread. As an engineer, I've never understood how someone would want to go through 5 years of uni to become a dentist. Then being stuck in a small office looking at people's teeth all day. Same goes for other professions such as pharmacy. Money may be good, but there are more important things in life. Sorry if this comment only adds to the drear but I just don't understand it.
    I'm no expert, but know enough to be dangerous...
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  17. #17
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    [quote=drewy;805684]
    Quote Originally Posted by NickH View Post
    At work I try to challenge and better myself- now days I try to focus on more complex dentistry like implants, cosmetics and full rehabs. Unfortunately this seems to add more stress.... I try to focus more on life outside of dentistry. Work less BUT work wiser- more money, less stress. Four days a week nine-five then shut off. Why don't you employ an assistant dentist and work less?
    NickH, I know what you mean by doing more complex procedures brings more stress. I do have an assistant dentist, so I only work 3.5 days now. So in that sense I've got it good.

  18. #18
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    Another thought I had was instead of changing industries to do short courses on handyman work- like what they hold at Bunnings, so I can do it more as a hobby.

  19. #19
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    my 2c. Do as some of the others have suggested and get into property renovation to start with. As you have said, you've already got 1.5 days you could spend on it without taking any kind of financial cut (assuming you're not already working on something else those days?!). I'm a mechanical engineer/designer and I love spending the weekends renovating - its very satisfying - but as the others have said, I think I'd be mad to chuck in the financial comfort I have to go off and start all over again - my degree was cheap at about $25k and even then I'd feel like I wasted my money if I did something I could have gotten into for free when I was 18?! Also, whilst being a tradie might be fun for a few years it is punishing on your body and cold mornings on site when you're 65 don't seem so appealing.

    Property development/project management I believe would be a challenge that wouldn't need you to start again but still provide an opportunity to create something. Although many people are talking about a 40% property crash I struggle to see how that could realistically occur in any of Australia's capital cities - people are always going to pay a premium for a property that has good design features and that doesn't necessarily have to cost a bomb; landscaping, a new deck here, a new kitchen there. The problem I believe was that people were buying places, painting a few rooms and putting new carpet in and thinking they deserved an extra $50k - unrealistic. Also, cheap credit and counter-intuitive taxation strategies (i.e. negative gearing) has led to every man and his dog being a "property investor" which I feel is entirely different to a "developer" who adds value to a property rather than just sitting on it and expecting to make a killing for nothing.

    Get a few mates together and build an eco 4-pack units/twhs on the beach.....or is that just my dream

  20. #20
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    Yeah Im over my job too and am wondering if I should branch into something like a GP Doctor or similar, at least they get to bury their mistakes.....

    I did think of becoming a baker once, but they cant p i s s on their own work like a brickie can......

  21. #21
    4K Club Member ringtail's Avatar
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    Bwahahahahahaha - brickie - gold.

  22. #22
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    Man if I did what Brikie suggested on my patients .............................. lawsuit big time!

  23. #23
    4K Club Member ringtail's Avatar
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    Nah just tip it down the drain with the mercury and cadmium mate...lol


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