More of us are working beyond the years of retirement, either out of necessity or by choice.
Generally, as an aging population, we are healthier in our 60s and 70s than ever before. More of us want to stay engaged and can do so. Working longer can increase our nest eggs and Social Security and give us a sense of purpose. While the trends are to work beyond 65 and to return to work from retirement, ageism is still prevalent both at work and getting work.
The Harvard Business Review cites scientific evidence that contradicts the popular assumption of “youth trumps age” for better job performance. The researchers wrote, “For most people, raw mental horsepower declines after the age of 30, but knowledge and expertise—the main predictors of job performance—keep increasing even beyond the age of 80.” The study also finds that cognitive diversity increases teamwork and creativity.
The movie The Intern with Robert De Niro and Anne Hathaway is about a 70-year-old widower returning to work as an intern for a young internet-based company founded and run by its young entrepreneur. At first, the obvious ageism is present until the young people warm up to the old guy. And the old guy soon becomes indispensable in saving the owner from jeopardizing her business and marriage. The point is the intern becomes mentor. Mentoring and interning can be a path forward to a sometimes contentious relationship between generations.
The Longevity Project at Stanford University presents the video: “Older Workers and the Lessons of the Pandemic.” The panel discusses the difficulty in finding work as we age and the repurcussions. One panel member, 63-year old Ray Suarez, a well-known journalist with PBS Newshour among his credits, explains his experience looking for work after a storied career. You can read his story in The Washington Post.
“Aging Workforce Brings On COBOL Crisis”, — Signal Magazine
“Best Life: Silver disobedience, turning aging on its head”, — Ivanhoe Newswire
Articles / Research
I clung to the middle class as I aged. The pandemic pulled me under.
— by Ray Suarez for the Washington Post
“More Americans Working Past 65”
“Why More Seniors are Working Longer”
— Investment News
“Two Solutions to the challenges of population aging” — Brookings Institute
“The case for hiring older workers”
—Harvard Business Review
“Why Older People are Starting New Businesses—and Succeeding”,
— Los Angeles Daily News
“Older Entrepreneurs as Successful as Their Younger Counterparts, Study Reveals”, New study makes the case that entrepreneurship isn’t just for the young, — Rensseleaer University
Women’s Work: Stories from Pioneering Women Shaping our Workforce,
— Chris Crimson, 2020, Simon & Schuster
Waiting on Retirement: Aging and Economic Insecurity in Low-Wage Work, — Mary Gatta, 2018, Stanford University Press
Aging, Work, and Retirement,
— Elizabeth F. Fideler, 2020, Rowman & LIttlefield Publishers