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What are the Different Private Sector Professions open for Teachers leaving Teaching?

From Ellen, published on 29/05/2017 We Love Prof - UK > Tutoring > Advice for Tutors > Jobs for ex-Teachers in the Private Sector

The private sector is a very different work environment to the public sector, with an entirely different focus on interaction with staff and clients alike. The private sector encompasses all businesses that are not operated or owned by the government, and that work for profit.

The UK private sector is a huge part of the economy, making up just over 80% of the country’s GDP.

If you are considering jobs after teaching in private sector, there are many important factors to consider, such as benefits, salary, job security and – crucially – the potential employer’s reputation.

The private sector has many fields, each with their own breadth. These mainly include:

  • Small and medium sized businesses
  • Large multinationals
  • Management roles
  • Retail banking
  • Trade unions
  • Partnerships such as legal, accounting, tax, dentistry
  • Private healthcare
  • Media organisations

This list is not exhaustive – and remember that within businesses there is an entire world of different career options and responsibilities for ex-teachers. You’ll find, as well, that many professions that appear in the public sector will often have a counterpart in the private sector too.

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Things to consider

Swap the classroom for a corporate environment! Could you see yourself working for a private business? Source: Visualhunt

Resigning from the public sector is a big move, and you should think about the consequences of this decision. But if you feel that your interests and skills are best suited to a role within the private sector, then it is by no means impossible to leave one for the other.

For most careers in the private sector you will need specific qualifications for the role, which as a teacher, you might find that you already possess. It could also mean that you will need to retrain for a particular profession.

In general, careers in the private sector have higher salaries than in the public sector. That said, the public sector offers many benefits that often aren’t matched in the private sector. Some people find that the benefits available in public sector jobs are worth taking a lower salary for.

The private sector, due to its competitive nature, means that salaries can get very high. To get an idea of what you can potentially expect to earn, good indicator is to do some market research into your area of interest, and look out for stabilities or patterns.

Many private sector jobs offer their own benefits, which can include substantial healthcare benefits and retirement packages.

If you are thinking of working in the private sector, it’s also important to consider the security of your job. Government jobs are often permanent positions, usually after a probation period, with solid security. This is not always the case for private sector jobs.

There is a higher level of vulnerability for employees in the private sector, which is influenced by various market forces and fluctuations. Private sector organisations work in competitive markets, so there isn’t the same sense of security as with the public sector.

A final thing to think about is your mind set as you approach a career in the private sector. The fundamental difference between the two sectors is that of commerce. After all, the private sector business objective is generating profit back to the owner.

This concept can sometimes be quite challenging for people who are used to working in the public sector. It can also sometimes be a hurdle to get private sector employees to see your potential in achieving their business objectives.

To overcome these challenges, really consider your strengths, transferable skills, experiences and human qualities. What would make you stand out for a private sector role? What kind of career would you suit as a former teacher?

The Business World

Could business be the right choice for you? Familiarise yourself with the different paths in the business world. Source: Visualhunt

Although the world of teaching can seem quite distant from the world of business, there are actually many fundamental similarities. Your education degree and skills as a teacher, and your knowledge of people and development, could make you an ideal business employee.

There are many areas of business you can get involved in as an ex-teacher. Some of the main fields are sales, marketing, management, human resources and entrepreneurship. There is also much scope for positions of leadership and big responsibility.

As a teacher, you are a natural manager. You can navigate tough situations, organise activity and a workforce, and juggle many tasks at once. Many teachers find careers in management with no further training or qualification – although there are many retraining options available.

 Sales

It’s possible, if you feel you wish to stay in the field of education, to move into sales of school supplies. With your insight and experience of the world of education and school life, you will no doubt know exactly what teachers and schools need. You may also have important connections that can help you conduct and grow a successful business.

As a teacher you will no doubt have a strong understanding of human relationships, needs and behaviour. This kind of intuition is what companies want to help them market their products.

Marketing requires a lot of intelligence and creativity. You need to understand the product, the market and the audience, and be able to transmit a message in an inventive, persuasive way.

Marketing

There are numerous kinds of marketing jobs, in both traditional and online forms, that teachers are professionally and creatively equipped for.

In the modern world, online marketing has become a huge field, with many roles in search engine marketing and optimisation. If you are an IT teacher, or have a good knowledge of IT, you might find that this work will stimulate your love of your subject, whilst also allowing you to get more creative and versatile with your work.

Starting Your Own Business

If you’re interested in getting involved with the business world and are self-motivated, why not start up your own company? Think about a product you could sell, and analyse the appropriate markets looking for gaps or patterns.

As a teacher, there is so much experience that you could draw upon when starting up your own business. Innovation, understanding of human needs and behaviour, communication and organisation are all crucial skills in the world of business.

You might consider starting up your own private tutoring business! If it’s teaching that you are passionate about, but the state system is the problem, then why not start up your own home tutoring company and be your own boss?

There are many ways to get started in private tutoring, and you can have completely free reign over when you work and who you work with. There are many agencies available to help you get the ball rolling, and online platforms such as Superprof, which allow you to advertise your business to a wide audience.

If you are starting up your own business, you will be a sole trader. You will therefore need to register as self-employed with the tax office, and think about appropriate insurance to protect yourself, your equipment and your business.

If your business grows and you start employing members of staff, there are additional security measures and insurance policies to take into consideration, to keep your company and your employees safe.

Think about becoming your own boss! Why not start up your own company? Source: Visualhunt

Different Professions within the Private Sector

Although the private sector is fundamentally made up of competitive businesses and organisations working for profit, there are many professions that work within these.

Perhaps you want to retrain for a career in healthcare – such as nursing, dietetics or midwifery, for example. Although these are often government funded training programs, there is ample opportunity to start a career in the private sector.

Private healthcare organisations tend to have far fewer patients to look after, and much better standards of work environment. Both patients and staff are look after differently to the public sector, and many private organisations will offer employees private benefits and packages in return.

There are also careers such as accounting, banking and law to consider. There are many training courses available, both full and part-time, to prepare you for a career in a specialised company if that’s where you feel you wish to be.

Many teachers transition into a career in writing or publishing. These are such a vast and varied career paths, which a strongly interlinked with one another. Careers in this field can range from writing, editing, copywriting, proofreading – and also encompass sales and marketing.

As a teacher, you will no doubt be a great writer, with skills in editing and proofreading too. You will have an analytical mind and a keen eye for detail. In the world of publishing, these skills are invaluable.

Whether you wish to remain in the area of education, or want to broaden your horizons and stretch to something new and more creative, writing and editing could be the perfect change from the classroom.

Maybe you are a languages teacher, or a natural linguist? You could get out of teaching and use your languages in a practical, business environment! In the ever-growing world of global communications, your language skills could land you a job as a translator or interpreter.

With languages, there are also many job opportunities for teaching abroad. If you have a TEFL certification, you might consider teaching English overseas as a foreign language, or providing corporate language training.

There are training programs available for both translation and interpreting, but these aren’t always a requirement. Some training is usually preferred – but as a teacher of a foreign language you will already have valuable qualifications and experience that would make you an attractive potential employee.

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