Mastering the Career Change from Banking [2023]

Change is the only constant in life – a saying that has never been more relevant in our increasingly dynamic and rapidly evolving world. With advancements in technology, social shifts, and a recent pandemic redefining work norms, many professionals are seeking new career horizons. A demographic that has become notably involved in this shift are those from the traditional banking sector, contemplating a ‘career change from banking’.

Leaving a secure and potentially lucrative career in banking can seem daunting. Yet, changing careers can bring about a boost in job satisfaction, personal growth, and even income, given the right circumstances. This article will delve into the intricacies of making a career change from banking, drawing on real-world research and data. It aims to provide insights, inspiration, and practical advice for those considering such a transformation.

The Landscape of Change

Before diving into the ‘how’, it’s important to understand the ‘why’. The banking sector saw a significant churn of employees, even before the pandemic struck. This trend, sparked by various factors including changing industry dynamics, evolving personal interests, and burnout, has accelerated in the years that followed.

The world of banking has been challenged by disruptive fintech startups, regulatory changes, and a push towards automation, leading to a potential decrease in traditional banking roles (World Economic Forum, 2023). Meanwhile, as part of a broader societal trend, individuals are seeking careers that offer flexibility, personal fulfilment, and alignment with their values – often diverging from traditional banking’s demands.

Career Shift – A Beneficial Venture

Вопреки распространенному мнению о том, что смена карьеры может привести к снижению дохода или престижа, исследования показывают, что стратегическая смена карьеры может быть полезной (Бюро статистики труда, 2019). Профессионалы из банковской сферы, обладающие такими навыками, как финансовая грамотность, управление рисками и построение отношений с клиентами, привлекательны для многих секторов. С правильными стратегиями банковские профессионалы могут переключиться на роли, где их навыки одинаково ценятся, и они находят больше личного удовлетворения.

Potential Career Paths for Bankers

Once the decision to make a career change from banking is solidified, the next step is to identify possible career paths. These should align with the individual’s interests, skills, and long-term goals. Some popular sectors that attract former bankers include:

  1. Financial Technology (Fintech): Fintech companies are reshaping the finance industry and often need individuals who understand the sector’s intricacies (Fry, 2018). Your banking background can be a powerful asset here.
  2. Consulting: Many banking professionals transition into consulting roles where they can leverage their industry knowledge and problem-solving skills (Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2020).
  3. Nonprofit sector: For those seeking personal fulfilment and alignment with values, the nonprofit sector could be a rewarding option.
  4. Entrepreneurship: Bankers with an innovative streak might find their calling in entrepreneurship, leveraging their financial acumen and network to launch their own venture.
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Table 1: Career Options After Banking

Career PathDescriptionSkills RequiredPossible ProsPossible Cons
ConsultingSolving organizational problems for companiesAnalytical skills, problem-solving, project managementVariety of projects, high earning potentialHigh travel demands, long working hours
FinTechApplying technology to improve financial servicesTechnological skills, financial knowledgeHigh growth industry, potential for innovationCan be unstable, possible long hours
Non-ProfitWorking towards social causesFundraising, community outreach, project managementPersonal fulfillment, positive social impactOften lower pay, can be high stress

Making a Successful Transition

A career change from banking, while promising, necessitates careful planning and preparation. Here are key steps supported by research:

Self-assessment: Self-assessment is the cornerstone of any successful career transition (Savickas, 2005). Reflect on your interests, values, skills, and long-term goals to guide your search for a new career path. Various psychometric tools can aid this process.

Skill Mapping and Upgrading: Identify transferrable skills from your banking career that could be valuable in your new role, and acknowledge areas where you might need additional training or education

Networking: Building connections in your chosen industry is critical. As per Granovetter’s “Strength of Weak Ties” theory, your casual acquaintances or “weak ties” are often the most valuable in a job search (Granovetter, 1973).

Job Shadowing or Internships: Before diving headfirst into a new career, consider job shadowing or internships. This approach allows you to test the waters, gain experience, and make informed decisions (National Career Development Association, 2020).

Table 2: Strategies for Successful Career Transition

Self-assessmentUnderstand your skills, interests, and values.
Career explorationResearch possible career paths, network, conduct informational interviews.
Decision makingWeigh pros and cons, make a decision.
Skill acquisitionGain necessary skills through education or experience.
Job searchUpdate resume and LinkedIn, apply for jobs, prepare for interviews.

Embracing the Journey

A career change from banking can seem intimidating, yet it is a journey of growth, self-discovery, and new opportunities. It offers a chance to break out of the confines of traditional roles and explore your passions and interests. The path may be riddled with challenges and uncertainties, but as research shows, the potential rewards – both personal and professional – can be significant.

As the philosopher Heraclitus once said, “The only constant in life is change”.

By embracing this change, banking professionals can create a new narrative for themselves, combining their financial prowess with their passion. As you ride the waves of this change, remember – every step you take brings you closer to a career that aligns with your interests, skills, and values. A career that not only brings bread to the table but also feeds the soul.


  1. Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor. (2020). Occupational Outlook Handbook: Management Analysts.
  2. Fry, Richard. (2018). Millennials are the largest generation in the U.S. labor force. Pew Research Center.
  3. Granovetter, M.S. (1973). The Strength of Weak Ties. American Journal of Sociology, 78(6).
  4. National Career Development Association. (2020). Career Development Theories.
  5. Savickas, M.L. (2005). The Theory and Practice of Career Construction. In S.D. Brown & R.W. Lent (Eds.), Career development and counseling: Putting theory and research to work (pp. 42-70). John Wiley & Sons.
  6. World Economic Forum. (2023). The Future of Jobs Report 2023.
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Editorial Board

Our small but talented group comprises a career counselor, career advisor, organizational psychologist, human resources professional, journalist. We also collaborate with specialists from various fields to ensure that our content is not only high quality but also relevant and useful.

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