In episode 81 of “The JoyPowered® Workspace Podcast,” JoDee and Susan discuss how older workers can reinvent themselves to forge new careers later in life. Whether they’ve been forced out of their old job in favor of a younger replacement or they’ve decided to follow a new passion, it can be hard for people age 50 and up to make headway in a new field. According to a Wall Street Journal article, 56% of US workers who are age 50 or older are pushed out of jobs before they plan to retire, and only 1 in 10 of them will ever find new work that earns as much as the job they are forced out of. That seems pretty bleak, right? Not so fast!
Today’s episode is about not living in fear of your age holding you back. JoDee and Susan tracked down a few people who have actually reinvented themselves in the pursuit and achievement of a new career later on in life, and are living much better for it. The guests on today’s podcast are Ann Boldt, Bill White, and Peggy Hogan.
First up, Ann Boldt walks us through her transition from genetic counselor to college advisor at Carmel High School in Indiana. After beginning her career as a genetic counselor, Ann eventually left the workforce for a time to spend time with her children. She filled her time with raising them and everything that went along with it, including PTO, Girl Scouts, and volunteering. As her youngest neared college age, she toyed with the idea of going back to work, when she found the opening for a college admissions counselor at a local high school. Though she didn’t have direct experience in a high school administration, her facetime with the high school faculty from parent teacher organization and transferable skills from her previous career helped her secure her new job, which she has been in love with ever since.
Next, Bill White, Susan’s husband, imparts his journey of career transition. After an extended period of college, Bill went to work as an architect in the banking world, where he handled branch remodels for years before growing dissatisfied with the practice. After an “aha!” moment, he decided to go back to school to get his master’s, the minimum required degree for a college professor. Luck was on his side, and he was able to secure a gig at IUPUI, a local college, shortly after earning his degree. His only regret? That he didn’t make the move sooner. Purple Ink’s manger of career transition services, Peggy Hogan, joins the podcast to recount some of the people she’s helped transition into completely different careers, how they’ve positioned their transferrable skills, and then reminds listeners of an often forgotten about trait that is a deal maker or breaker in the hiring process – likability.
The last person on the podcast to speak on starting an encore career? Susan! After working for a large corporation for years, she was laid off at age 55. Though she was 55, she felt that she still had a lot to give, and she soon began her consulting practice. For a while, she considered herself retired, just dabbling in consulting, but her practice soon grew too large to be considered anything less than a full blown encore career.
For today’s listener question, a guest is concerned about a recent job interview where the company held a case study for a real problem they’d been having with the business. The listener was concerned about the company taking her work, then going in a new direction for the hire. Finally, in the news, JoDee and Susan discuss a Wall Street Journal article regarding the uptick in bereavement policies among employers. Historically, companies would only let you take a handful of days of for a strict subset of relatives, but companies like Facebook, Mastercard, and Airbnb are setting a new gold standard in bereavement policy, with up to 4 weeks of leave!
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