Taking the leap into a new career at 40

Taking the leap into a new career at 40

By Mia Greves

As a profession, television journalism isn't pretty. Yes, it's exciting and yes, it can be glamourous (who doesn't love free clothes?) however, it's also downright brutal and often very bizarre.


A fair description of the media industry is 'cut-throat'. I witnessed and experienced this, but it wasn't until a couple of years ago that I underwent a real 'career shock' and re-evaluated the career I had, and redefined what I now wanted.


In 2014, I had amassed a rich journalism career of nearly 20 years, working primarily in Melbourne metropolitan newsrooms. I'd also been lucky to spend three years working in the Press Gallery in Canberra, a place jam-packed with people who treasure the craft of writing and telling a good story that matters.


My situation changed when I returned to Melbourne, professionally and personally. I became a mum to a beautiful little girl, however I also started to find myself increasingly sidelined in my television career. This was particularly frustrating and confronting given the work I had been doing in Canberra.


It’s unfortunately a common story for many senior women. I wasn’t the first person this has happened to, and certainly won’t be the last. However, it did make me take stock and decide what I wanted for myself.


There is nothing like a ‘life-shock’ – whether it be a baby, a break-up or a medical scare – to make you question if your current job is worth the drama. Financial commitments aside, when your time is precious, why be miserable at work?


I was, so I chose to make a change. However, I had no idea how I could ever fit-in outside of a newsroom. I’m used to running my own race with numerous daily deadlines. I lived ‘agile’ every day of my career and life.


As a cub journalist, I received some golden advice: Don't be an arsehole. The media game is exceptionally small and unforgiving. Years later, I was lucky enough to call on the business and communications contacts I had maintained throughout my career to get instant advice on how to make the massive leap into the corporate world.


Maintaining my networks was the best thing I could ever have done in my career. When I was job hunting, one coffee led to the next, and the next. I avoided recruiters and just cold-called places I wanted to work. The worst thing you can hear is no - and that’s not so bad.


In the past few years, I have worked in diverse industries and brought my ‘news sense’ to the corporate table. A smart boss realises any successful team needs people with unique skills and different life experiences. A good employer makes sure that you continue developing and provides the flexibility to get your job done. I feel lucky to have found both.


Now, at 41, I'm a mum of two with a fulfilling second career, one which enables me to spend weekends with my family and great friends. That, to me, is a real achievement...and one worth more than the free clothes.

Mia Greves

Mia Greves, is a former national journalist and currently a corporate communications manager. Educated in Brisbane, Mia’s 16-year television news career has taken her on a winding adventure from a Sunshine Coast weather presenter, onto Sydney, Melbourne and a political correspondent in Canberra’s Parliament House Press Gallery. She has presented for both the Nine and Seven Networks, and for the past two years has worked in external affairs covering major property, retail, government and health.


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Comments (1):

Great read Mia. What great advice. If only everyone took on board not to be an arsehole! I'm glad you are enjoying your second career. Long may it continue. Rosie

rmmrosiem - January 24, 2018