No More Retirement
Until recently, most people have invested their
working lives with the objective and expectation of retirement in
their fifties or sixties. The dream had been to spend time traveling
the world, playing with grandchildren, or just doing little chores
around the house. No more working for someone else; all your needs
would be paid for with the money saved for retirement years.
A number of factors suggest that we are seeing the end of this kind
a retirement picture. Instead, people will continue to work, at
least part-time, for many more years. Relatively few people will
enjoy full retirement, but many will find new ways to enjoy partial
retirement - a different kind of slowing down.
Older workers will remain active in the workforce - on a part-time
or full-time basis - into their 70s or later. Some will remain in
their career positions, staying longer than they ever imagined they
would. Others will retire from their career positions and move into
other jobs in the same or different fields. A number of "second
season" workers will leave employment to start their own businesses.
With the average life span in developed countries now almost eighty
years, someone "retiring" at 55 has another twenty years
of career life available.
There will be a critical need for mature workers. Their wisdom and
experience will hold high value for enlightened employers eager
for reliable, stable, productive employees. The labor shortage will
create all sorts of opportunities for talented seniors. Respected
for what they have already accomplished, many will serve as coaches
or mentors to younger colleagues.
Personal values will inspire many 50+ workers to continue working.
This generation has a core value of being productive members of
society. Stopping work may be in conflict with that value.
Retirement will be out of the question for those who have not saved
enough to pay their way. They'll have to continue working to pay
the bills. The stock market drop made this decision for a lot of
Shifts in retirement will change many lives.