Life after retirement can be quite interesting as long as you decide to put your time to good use. Here are a few cool tips if you plan on working even after you retire.
Have you retired recently? Are you now lounging at home with nothing to do? Well, there are plenty of opportunities out there for you. People tend to think that they will take plenty of rest at home after they retire and indulge in all the activities the never had time for before. After all, that’s the least someone would expect after saving for their retirement through tried and trusted investment avenues such as Mutual Funds, Fixed Deposits et al.
However, many people find that it can get pretty boring after a few months of hanging up their boots. They want to keep their grey cells ticking all the time instead of wasting away. In fact, you can derive inspiration from many individuals the world over who have had successful second careers after their retirement.
In this article, we’ll tell you all about the exciting opportunities waiting for you after you retire and how to have a fulfilling second career.
Manju, who held a top post in a public sector bank, voluntarily retired in 1998. She subsequently joined a private sector bank as the Head of Risk Management before eventually resigning in 2009. She then went on to head an IT consulting firm until she finally retired in 2015 at the ripe old age of 72.
On being asked what helped her create a successful post-retirement career, she said “Confidence is what matters. You need to believe in yourself and know that you aren’t actually ‘that’ old to sit at home and watch the same soaps on TV every day. When you remain active, you are also less likely to have health issues. Using my skills always gave me a high. By nature, I like to take risk. So, a second career was actually a necessity rather than a choice. Today there are so many opportunities out there for senior professionals that are impossible to ignore.”
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Be bold, not old!
One of the main misconceptions about post-retirement is that there are no jobs out there for retirees. To an extent, it is true that many employers or Human Resource (HR) consultancies don’t exactly look for older people or have jobs specifically designed for the elderly. But they are willing to consider retirees if they ‘fit the bill’. So, you can apply for a job just like anyone else if there are no upper age limits.
The following are the criteria that your prospective employers might look for:
- Experience – The more your experience in the field, the better your chances of landing the job. Getting people with experience is important for companies, especially smaller firms and start-ups which are setting up their base.
- Attitude – This is crucial. If you are going to act like every job is a chore, you might be shown the door. Your enthusiasm should shine through when you go for an interview.
- Loyalty – If you have a lot of work experience, especially if you’ve spent a lot of time at a single company, prospective employers are likely to respect you and consider you application. If you have been a job hopper all your life, your chances of landing a job after retirement could take a hit.
- Flexibility – Being available for work is important for prospective employers. Your schedule should be set in such a way that your job is top priority, especially if it is full time.
- Energy levels – This is a very important point. If you are panting for breath in the middle of the interview, your employer might feel that you are just not cut out to work anymore. Show that you have high energy levels and not someone who is willing to call it quits just yet.
The first and last criteria are the most important. Now that you are an experienced hand, your experience will count more than your college degrees. The biggest challenge that employers face when it comes to placing retirees is their rigid thinking. This is why it is important to adapt to new environments and roles to succeed at a job post your retirement.
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The jobs for retirees are varied and aplenty. One sector that has been trending is the Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) sector. There are always vacancies available and the timings are flexible, which suits the elderly.
You can, of course, look at Non-Governmental Organizations (NGO). There are many who do not have experienced people to administer their offices. There are health care NGOs needing basic assistance in guiding patients to fill up forms. Legal expertise is a major need in several small and medium enterprises.
If you are a finance pro, you can think about joining small chartered accountant firms that need experienced hands to handle the pressure during tax season. Another area that you can consider is training or counselling centers. Also, roles that involve licensing or liaising with the government is time consuming, and retirees who earlier worked for government firms stand a good chance of being considered for the same.
Do it in style
- Think it out – Most people never plan on how they want to spend their time after retirement. If you don’t plan, you may be either bored or frustrated. Asses your needs. Why do you want to work after retirement? Is it for a constant source of income, social connections or just to want to occupy yourself? Answering these questions honestly will help you land the right job.
- Networking works – Keep in touch with people in your previous jobs – especially with the senior management. Networking is one of the best ways to find the job that you want. Keep your LinkedIn and other social media accounts active so that you know of the right opportunities at the right time.
- Get value – If you understand the roles and responsibilities of the job you are looking for, you could take up certifications that will add value to the position that you are seeking. For example, ex-service men can take up courses on security management. This will help them land jobs in private firms as security heads. Also, most of the elderly may not be able to understand new software at their work place. Even though your employer may train you, it is best to sharpen your computer skills before you join a post-retirement job.
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Apart from choosing jobs, you can consider setting up your own enterprise. But note that this is a risky proposition if you are going on your own. Ideally, you should partner with a younger person who will be able to handle the pressures of the job. Before starting on your own, thoroughly understand the costs involved, licensing procedures, your competitors and most importantly, how much you are willing to risk.
It is totally risky to dabble in businesses that you have no knowledge of. Better to take a shot at something that you are a pro at. Take care to ensure that you have all the certifications, licenses and finance to set up the venture. You can even consider being a franchisee. That way, you will get all the help in setting up a business and need to worry only about administration. It is best to start small. You can, of course, expand your base once you know you have a successful venture on hand.
Whatever the job you take up after retirement, understand that it is not worth compromising your health or personal life for it. You should enjoy your work and have minimal stress and pressure. And remember, there will come a time when you will have to really retire. You need to be ready for it – emotionally as well as financially.