In a country like Nigeria where strong bodied youths are short of employments and younger entrepreneurs finding things difficult to find their feat in business not to talk of those who had been in business for ages and yet finding continuity extremely difficult. What is the hope for a retiree?
Significantly, retirement in a way is an addition to the labour force particularly if the body is still strong enough at the point of retirement.
Nigerians are naturally strong such that we are still largely full of life at retirement age. It will not be out of order to seek what to do to keep busy for the rest of life. But in the face of stack realities in our nation, we must of necessity strategise.
Staying idle in retirement can only add to family dependency ratio. In other words, such will only increase family expenditure. The best is to remain active, reinvent yourself and use retirement as a chance for new vocational opportunities that will make the concept of the end of work in retirement obsolete.
A strategic plan can help any retiree think about what they want to do during a time in their life that offers financial security with pensions, annuities, investments, and Medicare. Sure, retirement will be a good time and opportunity to spend time with family, loved ones, and people you enjoy. Spending more time on hobbies, volunteer activities, fundraising for a favorite charity, or working in a job where you are comfortable and have a lot to offer too will not be a bad idea.
To achieve your goal of profitable vocation in retirement, you will need to invest some time into planning the second part of the career you current pursue and take the opportunity to explore how the culmination of your talents, experiences, contacts all connect with your passion. Yes, you really can do what you love and love what you do, so that it seems like a hobby rather than a job.
If financial necessity is the motivation for your next work phase in retirement, then make it a job that matches the aspects of your past career that you enjoyed doing and for which you want to be hired. Design a resume targeting your education, experiences, and accomplishments matching your ideal job, and navigate your search toward positions that will offer you confidence and fulfilment.
But who wants to hire an older worker? The general thinking is that they are often stereotyped as out of touch, out of date, lacking technical skills, not fitting in with the younger workers, and basically lacking in the ability and energy to do their job.
Today, with this large cohort leaving the workplace, there are myths about older workers that should be addressed. But then, older workers do have many marketable qualities that prove them to be good employees capable of improving customer service, employee morale, and profits. They include: dedication, punctuality, honesty, detail orientation, focus, devotion to the truth, active listening, and excellent communications skills. They take pride in their work. If all these are true about you, you may seek to work part time, as a consultant, a contract worker. Older workers are intrinsically motivated to ensure a job is done well.
Your pre-retirement or early retirement years should be deployed to plan for your next vocation but how?
• Conduct assessments of your interests, skills, values, experience, education, and accomplishments. Start focusing on your strengths, what you know, and what you have to offer the rest of the world before you die. Design a Summary of Qualifications for your resume with skills and major accomplishments that you want to apply in your future work.
• List the times you have been flexible and adaptable through restricting, downsizing, and reorganization to show you are not resistance to change.
• Make a to-do list and list all methods to locating a job, breaking each step into a strategic job search plan that you can check off when you finish. You will feel good about yourself and will give yourself credit for the progress.
• If you still desire any form of engagement, make looking for a job your full-time job.
• Consider volunteering or getting an internship as a way to maintain or increase your skills and minimize resume gaps.
• Keep up-to-date in your chosen field. Read trade publications; attend workshops, conferences, and meetings of professional organizations. Share your own knowledge with others as well through in-person meetings, online discussion forums, or blogging. This will help with networking later on.
• Sharpen your skills. Take some technical or online-based classes to upgrade your skills. This is especially important if you are considering a career change.
• Use social media. LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter allow you to network, demonstrate your expertise, and indicate that you are at least somewhat technically savvy.
• Revise your resume, prepare for behavioral interviews, and launch your strategic job search with the confidence and assurance that you have a lot to offer to the workforce.
• Become an entrepreneur or consider consulting or contract work in your field or even at your previous employer if you are willing to work for salary only.