Postscript on finding a retirement job: The following story appeared on CNBC.com on July 19:
"Half of American jobs are at risk from automation, new study suggests" giving further reason why you do not want to depend on or look for a job. Read on for our to generate retirement income.
How to Get a Retirement Job
This blog is for people approaching retirement and already retired. So I address people seeking a full time job (not yet retired) as well as those retired who need to supplement their income with a part-time retirement job.
I have a very different orientation than most people about getting a retirement job and earning income. Because my orientation is different, it may be useful for those who read this post. It will hopefully supply readers looking for retirement work another and more successful way to secure an income.
I am 57 and in my adult life have had one job that paid a salary. I had that job for only two years, about 40 years ago. The other years I have worked for results. i.e. self-employed. No results, no income.
I spent 20 years or so as a stockbroker and then registered investment adviser. In these positions, one earns commissions on sales or fees on managing money for other people. If I didn't go out and get clients, no income.
I retired from that profession and have since been a business owner. There have been times when business was terrible where I didn't take an income for 12 months. I made sure employees and their payroll taxes were paid. There have also been two years where my income was in the seven digits. It has been feast or famine but most years in between.
The Old Model for Getting Employment or Retirement Job
So I have a reaction to this comment in today's NY Times:
"I feel hopeless, and that just makes it hard," said Sherry Lockhart, 53, of Enumclaw, Wash., who was laid off by the state's liquor control board a year ago, when voters privatized liquor sales. Now, her jobless benefits are about to be slashed as a result of federal spending cuts. "I just feel I've done my best over the years, and I feel like I haven't failed the system. The system has failed me, and millions more."
I don't understand how "the system" has failed anyone.
This woman's comments seem to indicate that she is owed a job by the "system." Last I checked, this was a free capitalist economy. The most capable get hired first.
If she wants a guaranteed job regardless of her capabilities, I don't know where she can find that as I think guaranteed or secure employment has also disappeared in China and Russia. The notion of a guaranteed job is an element of socialism and so far, we have not deteriorated to that.
Maybe she is bitter that the world has changed and she has been left out. (This is a problem for many people which I address below).
I don't know what she did at the liquor store--maybe stocked shelves or was a cashier. In the last 20 years, skills such as mastering the preparation of an Excel spreadsheet or basic functions of Windows 7 have become prerequisites for entry-level positions. She may not have those skills. But whose fault is that?
Was someone from the government to come to her door and take her to classes to train her for a new economy? Or, does a capitalist society work best using Darwin's laws of the fittest. In an economic sense, those who have the skills and abilities and training desired by buyers will earn the money. Those who do not face extinction.
Unfortunately, there are millions of people who adhere to a broken personal model. That model being that jobs should be abundant and available for those of any ability. Just as a business that has a broken model will cease to exist, these individuals will cease to make a living. Let's discuss the correct model that anyone can master and use to become financially successful.
The New Model for Getting Employment and a Retirement "Job"
The question from the old model is, "where can I find a job?" The replacement question of the new model is, the new economy is, "what can I provide that will be of value to people who have money and will pay?"
If one was a cashier all their life and there are no jobs for that position, it simply means that being a cashier does not answer the question of what you can provide that will be of value to people who have money and will pay.
It simply means that others don't need that function provided. To continue to look for that job is insane if there are no buyers. Think about that--have you been seeking a job or retirement job that does not exist anymore or for which there is little demand?
At the Safeway supermarkets in my area, there are no self-service lanes. If you go to France, there are ONLY self-service lanes. You will find only ONE lane that has a cashier to assist those that need help. All shoppers are expected to use the self-service checkout and bag their own groceries.
As soon as the supermarkets catch on in the US, 90% of the supermarket cashier jobs will be eliminated. Just like the toll takers at the bridge, they have been replaced by automation. So please stop looking for these types of simple, manual easily-automated retirement jobs.
Get Paid by Giving Employers What They Need
So what function do the buyers (employers) need?
One simple way to answer that question is to open the job classifieds in the newspaper. Those jobs being advertised are functions needed by people with money willing to pay. If you find you don't have the skills or experience for those jobs, one option is to get those skills.
Another option is to provide the functions that are not listed in the employment classifieds because they don't fit the parameters of a typical job.
For instance, every restaurant owner seeks more business. In fact, EVERY business wants more business.
You won't find that job listed in the newspaper: "business getter." Approach the restauranteurs in your city and ask if they want more business for their restaurant (they will say "yes"). Ask if he will pay you $10 for each new diner you bring to his restaurant. There are number of ways you could collect many $10 bills from this restaurant owner. For example:
- Print flyers at two cents apiece with a coupon authorized by the restaurant owner and place them on the 5000 windshields of the downtown parking lots.
- Get the same coupon created online (if you don't know how to do that, then LEARN). Visit all the sites serving your local community that have e-mail addresses on the site such as the Chamber of Commerce, the city's business directory, the city's employee directory, sites of the largest employers, etc. Commit several hours a day to sending out personalized e-mails recommending the restaurant with a link to the online coupon.
- Position yourself at the busiest intersection downtown and hand out flyers to the 2000 people who go by during lunch hour.
You are hopefully beginning to see that business owners have unfilled needs and they are willing to pay to satisfy those needs. Bringing customers to any business is a perfect retirement job.
These needs will not appear in the employment classifieds because the business owner has never thought to hire a "business getter." These needs are so obvious we don't even think about them. Examples include:
- People who need their house cleaned
- Elderly people who need in-home care
- People who need their children looked after
- Businesses who would pay to have their store front windows washed but don't bother to call anybody
- Businesses happy to have you make calls and find people interested in their products
- Charities happy to pay you a percentage of the money you raise by calling potential donors
The variety and number of needs that individuals and businesses have are endless. And they are happy to pay you to satisfy these needs. Each is a perfect retirement job.
In each case, you get paid for results. Do not expect to get paid in advance or get paid a salary. That is the old world. If you want to get paid in advance, you need specialized skills.
So in your new model don't expect to see these jobs in the newspaper or advertised on Craigslist. In the new model, you first ask yourself, "what results can I create that other people need and will pay for?"
You look to see if you have particular skills, talents or experience that will best satisfy those needs and leverage your time. You then approach those buyers and offer to get results for them and have them pay you. That's how money is earned. That's how you create your own retirement job.