COVID-19 has made us worried about tomorrow. Instead of thinking outside the box, the answer may lie within. Learn more on #GreyMatters.
Thinking Outside the Box vs. Thinking Inside the Box
[0:00] – Introducing this episode of the Grey Matters podcast: the increasing challenge that COVID-19 is placing before baby boomers.
- The changes brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic will profoundly affect all baby boomers and Gen Xers, especially those who are close to or past the point of retirement. It is a fire that threatens to consume the financial security and health of those whose jobs will suffer in its wake, and it’s time to start thinking of ways to counteract or even undo the damage.
[2:29] – Early retirement, even for people who don’t want to retire yet.
- Under this pandemic, businesses have suffered, and so many people who are on the cusp of retirement are being laid off. In these cases, they are realizing that they might not have that last few years of gainful employment that they'd planned on to feather their nest, so to speak.
- These sudden, life-altering changes require equally prompt course correction. The problem is that for many people, they don’t even know where or how to begin.
- Many people who are being forced to retire in these times did not plan to stop working this early, believing that they still have so much more to give.
- And with the global pandemic completely altering the landscape, it’s clear that entrepreneurship may be the most viable option to survive, even for people who had absolutely no plan of getting into business in the first place, for the simple reason that they can’t afford to retire just yet.
[6:01] – What should older generations be doing now?
- One of the narratives apparently being tailored for baby boomers and Gen Xers is the “sit and wait for the world to get better” approach. However, this does not really help anyone, especially people from those generations who do not intend to wait for society to normalize.
- It is important to start building your own course and opening up opportunities for yourself at a crucial time like this.
[10:03] – The challenges of entrepreneurship, then vs. now.
- While some of us may feel traumatized by what’s going on in the world today, now is not the time to let our fears and anxieties cripple us. We have to take care of ourselves and our loved ones, and to do that, we need to take control, pivot, and reinvent ourselves as necessary.
- Three decades ago, becoming an entrepreneur required an enormous investment in certain interpersonal and business-related skill sets. Nowadays, the battleground has shifted to the digital realm; in order to be globally competitive, you need to be on the World Wide Web.
- Fortunately, social media platforms represent an incredible opportunity to market your business and reach as many people as possible – an invaluable resource at a time when face-to-face meetings are next to impossible.
[12:33] – Thinking outside the box vs. thinking inside the box.
- Instead of stressing over the prospect of having to learn entirely new skills, take a look at the skill set that you've honed over your career and lifetime, and lean into that. Figure out a way to leverage that in this new space.
- Recognize that it's what you've done in the past that's going to serve you in the future — and finding a way to apply and leverage that experience is going to be the key.
[14:36] – The biggest challenge that baby boomers and Gen Xers face as they look for opportunities in this new world.
- Grieve for the world and for your career, if you must.
- Give yourself time to feel it all. But at the end of it, you must pick yourself up and start working hard to build the future you want.
- Marnie McLoud
- Dave Jones
- Steve Loeber
- Tom Loudon
- Ian Christie
- Cindy Cassidy
- Leslie Solgrove
- Jeffrey Goldberg
- Kevin O'Malley
- Joe Miller
- Doug Lee
- Jan Ends
- Ron Lamarhart
- Michelle Ochres
- Mary Ahern
- Thomas Vorschtendeckler