I spend a lot of time talking to people my age about their desire to go back to work. “If I can only find something for 20 hours a week where I can use my brain,” said a friend of mine who has been retired a few years. For fifteen years, he was Vice-President of a pharmaceutical company.
His desire to work is not uncommon. Many retired business people and educators miss the action of their occupation. They don’t necessarily want to work full time, but they want to find a position where they are useful and appreciated. They are not interested in being a Walmart greeter or a Uber driver (even though there is nothing wrong with that).
While my contacts want to be involved with the decision makers, they can’t even get their job request phone calls returned. They send out resumes, go to networking parties, and even attend job fairs. Nothing ever materializes.
Huffington Post just issued a story, “Where Are All The Old People In Silicon Valley? It covers the fact that once older folks lose their job in the Bay Area, there is no chance of getting back in. The article quotes Mark Zuckerberg of Facebook who once offended 50-plus crowd when he said, “Young people are just smarter.”
I’m announcing today, that I am going to try to prove Zuckerberg wrong. I’m in the midst of contacting Facebook, Google, Proctor & Gamble, Amazon, Pfizer, etc about starting a program where they hire seniors to find solutions to major challenges. The qualified seniors can work flexible hours just as long as they meet deadlines and make significant contributions to the company.
When I outlined my intent on Facebook recently, the response was overwhelming. Lots of friends wanted more information. My job has just begun. I feel that I can start a trend where major companies take a chance on seniors. Now I just have to find the right senior candidate, for the right meaningful project.