the career farm podcast episode 66 - the radical sabbatical with emma rosen


How do you find out what you want to be when you grow up?

Emma Rosen's parents asked her every year at New Year in a kind of social experiment. The recordings of those conversations became a useful source of inspiration when she found, after rotating on the graduate scheme on the Civil Service Fast Steam Scheme, she was craving variety with more of an emphasis on creativity and innovation.  But where to start?

"It just didn't feel right"

"The issues were important but I wasn't happy and felt unfulfilled even though outwardly I was seen as successful."

"I felt trapped and not challenged in the way I wanted to be."

"I wanted variety and not to be desk based."

Emma brainstormed career options using those recordings from her childhood as a starting point but she couldn't pick one.

Could she just try them out?

the career farm grow your own podcast - emma rosen
Job 1: archaeology in Transylvania

Well that is what she is doing now. Her blog catalogues all the various career she wants to try. As she goes she writes up her experiences so far she is on job 5 having completed internships in things as diverse as wedding photographer to working for  start up loft company.

Just a millennial issue?

Think again.

A recent Telegraph article about her project garnered a massive response from people offering internships and work shadowing opportunities, and from those who just wanted her to know they were in the same boat.

She found kindred spirits of all ages and backgrounds  - suggesting this is a big issue across whole of society. Emma thinks (and I agree!) that a more flexible workforce doing work they want to do makes us more resilient as a nation. People will have fewer days off sick as they are happier, productivity will be higher which is good for the economy, and there will be less pressure on the NHS.

In this podcast you will hear about:

  • What her parents asked her every year
  • The 5 things she has tried so far
  • How she has found these internships/work placements
  • Advice we can give our children


Emma's website: 25 before 25 - The Radical Sabbatical 

Article in The Daily Telegraph Newspaper

I Could Do Anything if I Knew What it Was: How To Discover What You Really Want and How To Get it,  Barbara Sher

Working Identity: Unconventional Strategies for Reinventing Your Career,  Herminia Ibarra

Escape The City

If you can help Emma find work shadowing or internships in TV and Film, Hotel Inspection, Primatology (study of monkeys) or Marine Biology please get in touch via with her via her website 25 before 25

Thanks again to Emma for giving us her time to be interviewed.

In case you missed it, that Radio 4 interview...

As I mentioned in at the start of the podcast, earlier this week I was interviewed on BBC Radio 4's flagship news programme "PM".  Here's a link to the interview and the story behind it:

Jane's interview on BBC Radio 4 PM programme with Eddie Mair

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