When you had your first job as a teenager, the allure of extra pocket money was a thrill. Then, somewhere along the line, you realized that you had to do this whole "work" thing for the rest of your adult life, and it was only the sweet promise of retirement that kept you going.
The funny thing about retirement is, however, it's not always everything it promised to be. It might be that you have too much life on the other side of retirement and you're starting to feel the pinch, or maybe you miss that buzz from being busy and always on the go.
Whatever it is, an increasing amount of Americans are looking for part-time jobs as retirees. We spoke to career coach Simon Bennett to hear about what to look out for as a retired worker.
Consider your lifestyle.
Before you start your job search, Simon says it’s important to take a step back and think about what type of lifestyle you want.
Create a budget for all the things you’d like to do and then work out how much money you’ll need to maintain it — is it achievable, or is there a shortfall? “Doing this will give you some insight into the type of work — and how much of it — you’ll need to do to achieve your goals,” Simon says.
Start with what you know.
If you already have a skill and enjoy using it, Simon recommends taking full advantage of it. “It doesn’t matter what it is, there’s probably a market for it somewhere,” he says.
Suzanne used to work as a journalist before moving into public relations, so she had public speaking experience. “I wanted to find a job where I could combine my skills,” she says. “Retirement is meant to be the best years of your life, so it was important I did something I enjoyed but was also comfortable with.”
It wasn’t until she performed the eulogy at her dad’s funeral that Suzanne realized she wanted to become a funeral celebrant. “It’s not that I overly enjoyed the job as such, but rather it gave me a sense of satisfaction,” she explains. “The combination of my skills in journalism and presenting means it doesn’t feel like a job. Plus, it gives me an opportunity to meet new people.”
Find your second career.
Retirement is the perfect opportunity to try something new — especially if you have a burning passion. Whether it’s baking cookies on the weekend, playing a musical instrument, or making your own clothes, turn that hobby into a little money-spinner. “While it’s never going to replace a full-time income, if you’re excited about your hobby, you can make some decent money from it,” Simon reveals.
Suzanne adds it’s about looking at your past career and what you like and finding out how these aspects can be applied to a new job. “If you’re doing something you love and you’re willing to persevere at it then everything else seems to fall into place,” she says.
Network with everyone.
Ease your way into your job search by starting with contacts you already have. “A lot of people tend to target large chain employers such as Bunnings and Woolies and, while that’s fine, everyone else is applying there. So it makes it difficult to stand out from the crowd,” Simon explains.
It’s better to look around your local neighborhood and target smaller businesses because they don’t have hundreds of people applying for the same position. “If it’s a small family retail business and you know the owners, you’re already halfway there,” he says.
Part-time Nanny or Babysitter
The interaction with chirpy, energetic children makes this job a great choice for retirees.
The appreciation from families can also bring about a sense of accomplishment and satisfaction, knowing they’re grateful for your presence.
What it pays: Approximately $20 per hour.
If you’ve got admin skills from a previous career, put them to good use by taking on clerical work. “Skills and experience from your work history are valuable and transferable,” Simon says.
It will help you stand out and slip straight into your new role. It also keeps your mind active while you earn extra money to put toward something nice.
What it pays: Approximately $20 per hour.
Combine the outdoors with exercise and serve the community at the same time.
“It’s incidental exercise, which is great for the body and mind. It can also be quite social,” Simon explains.
It gets you out of the house and it’s a wonderful way to meet new people.
What it pays: Approximately $8-$20 per hour.
This post was written by Mary Brook and Kate Wagner. For more, check out our sister site Now to Love.