"The Launch Pad community was a huge reason why I made my shift."


Amanda Nieman's career had served her well but she was ready for something different. Drawing on the tools and community of the Launch Pad, she was able to hone in on what she wanted next and shift into a better fitting role.

What were you doing for work before taking part in the Launch Pad and how did you feel about your work?

I worked in sales and recruiting through a direct sales company. 

Even though I was grateful for my career and who I worked with, I could tell I was wanting to do something different.

Why did you decide to join the Launch Pad?

I knew I didn't want to stay in sales and recruiting, and had a sense that I wanted something different, but I didn't know what to do instead.

I remember sitting in a coffee shop and googling 'what to do when you don't know what to do for a living'. So I was feeling pretty stuck at that time.

That’s when I found the Careershifters workshop and subsequently signed up for the Career Change Launch Pad.

What were the highlights from the course?

One of the most impactful things from the Launch Pad was coming up with career themes.

One of mine was 'helping facilitate meaningful connection through individuals and teams'.

So I knew I wanted to do something in facilitation, with people, something that was strategic, and something in a mission-driven organisation. 

It wasn't a pretty job description but I knew I had enough to go on. So when I'd look at job postings, I could kind of assess if it hit some of those buckets.

I also plugged into the Launch Pad community during the course and post-course. There is even a small group of us now that meets up every three to four months to see how we are all doing. 

That support group was a huge reason why I made my shift.

How did the Launch Pad help you get clear on and move into your new career?

I found my current role through a LinkedIn post a former colleague of mine had shared.

When I finished Launch Pad, I knew it was important to keep my momentum. I created a daily list to do. One of those tasks was looking at LinkedIn to see if there were any opportunities in line with my values. 

So a few weeks post Launch Pad, I saw the post about the job I have now. The closing date was the next day.

Because of all the pre-work I'd done during the Launch Pad, my CV/resume was up to date. Without the work I had done through Launch Pad I don’t think I would have seen this job or been prepared to apply.

Where are you now in your career?

I work in strategic talent management at a university. 

My role focuses on identifying professional development opportunities for staff, onboarding new team members and strengthening the culture. 

How do you feel about your work?

In terms of what I do in my day to day, my work is now better aligned with who I am and how I like to work.

I also have a different mindset around work. It’s a part of my life, not my whole life. 

What’s been the impact of your shift on your wider life?

A lot of the principles and conversations we discussed during the Launch Pad resonated with me beyond my career shift. 

Around this same time, I was contemplating whether to move to a different city. Instead of thinking 'well just move and do it', I thought about how to experiment with the idea first. 

‘Why don't you go visit the city? What is it about the city that you like? Why don't you walk around where you are now with a backpack going to the grocery store in a rainstorm and see if you like that, since if you live in a big city that will be your life (rather than using a car)?’. 

This exercise helped me to learn more before making a massive move.

Anything else to add?

If you have that inner nudge to make a change, or try out a class, or explore something new, do it.

At some point, while reading things and watching things online can be helpful, if you really want to make the shift then you've got to take action do it yourself. Give yourself the chance.

You can find full details about the course on our dedicated Launch Pad page.