If you haven’t saved enough for retirement, consider the following:
I’ve read various surveys reporting that many Baby Boomers feel that they do not have enough retirement savings. Many say their 60’s just crept up on them. Also, expenses like their children’s college education, cost of housing, and the 2008 market crash were obstacles to saving. Some even had to deal with unexpected medical expenses that soaked up all the funds they were trying to put away.
Now as they age, the need to retire draws closer—but the retirement savings needed to augment social security just aren’t there. This causes fear, anxiety, and helplessness. It drops many into the dark hole of denial… a place that only causes an even greater downward spiral.
Some will hold on to the jobs they have and plan to stay with it as long as they can. But they know the end is in sight.
So what can they do? Well, just as they did in their early 20’s, it’s time to:
- stop panicking
- get some advice
Remember when you were first starting out in your career? It felt hopeless as you started to interview for jobs and you were terrible at it. But over time, you started to become a better interview. You networked yourself through family, friends, and neighbors to get your foot in the door of the company that eventually hired you.
Well, it’s time to do that again!! Only this time, you not only bring a boatload of experience, you bring value to your employer, as well as the wisdom of your years.
If your current situation can sustain you and you like what you do, keep doing it for as long as they will have you. When your annual review comes along, have a heart-to-heart with your company. Tell them you would like to continue in your role for X years, and then you’d like to pull back into a consulting or a specialist role at market rate for as long as it is good for both.
After all, if you continue to bring high quality value to your workplace, why wouldn’t they keep you around?
The key is to set up a trusting relationship with your employer.
The head games that you imagined disappear because you are dealing with the company upfront. You are in control.
Now, if for some reason the company has to pull back on their commitment, you simply negotiate a good severance and do what you did in the past – network, network, network until that next opportunity appears.
Decide what you really want to do.
But before you start networking again, step back and reflect on what it is you really want to do—not just what you can do because you’ve done it before. It’s the latter that many people jump into that puts them right back into that cycle of another new job that only lasts a year. Why does this happen? Because the company needed to fill a hole quickly, and you did not recognize new skills were needed, thus, you no longer brought value. So you get replaced.
Today many people I coach feel it’s their age that is against them, when actually it is their inability to see change in their short-term future. They fail to seek out the new skills necessary to bring value to what they do. Remember, the company does not want turnover because it’s an expense.
What they do want is all employees getting behind the vision; for you, that means bringing value that will sustain that vision.
In order to successfully re-enter the workforce and build your retirement savings:
- Decide what you really want to do
- Research the long- term value skills necessary to do that job
- Make sure you have those new skills
- If you do not have the skills, go back to school or get a certification in order to show your potential employer that you are relevant, and that you can bring big value and wisdom to their workplace
Choosing a new workplace is about more than skills.
It’s also about how the place feels and what their corporate values look like. When you check out their website, can you see yourself on that site a year from now? In other words, are you representative of their culture?
Are you ready, willing, and able to be an entrepreneur?
There are also alternatives to joining “the man” again. In deciding what you want to do, you should also check out other ways of generating revenue for Y-O-U!
If the idea of being an entrepreneur appeals to you, go talk to several Business Brokers to see what opportunities they have. Or, if what you are looking for isn’t for sale, seek out a Franchise Coach who can show you various franchises that may appeal to you.
If you have the “knack” to run your own business successfully, the entrepreneur track can help relieve the long-term stability FEAR and set you up on a 20-year “revenue for me stream” working as much or as little as you want with the goal of adding to your retirement savings.There are also significant 401k savings rules that are available to you as an entrepreneur that are not there as an employee on top of your “revenue stream for me.”
Remember what’s most important.
Finally, as well as deciding what you want to do and finding it, you need to take care of yourself physically. What you eat, how often you exercise, and annual visits to trained medical personnel can help surety to your overall wellness.
If you are lack the retirement savings you need, it’s time to stop, reflect, and take action. Your future is as bright or as bleak as you make it. You are in control of your life—just give yourself the chance to decide what you want and then go for it.
Retirement savings is important, but there’s more to consider as well.
Sure, you’ll need to finance the retirement lifestyle you desire, but many make the mistake of thinking retirement is all about the money. At Retirement Lifestyle Coaching, we’ll help you see the big picture when it comes to crafting a retirement lifestyle that works perfectly for you.
Bob Foley is your Retirement Lifestyle Coach and you can reach him by email at email@example.com or simply by scheduling time on his calendar here.