Yesterday I had the great please to watch The Intern with Robert De Nero and Anne Hathaway - what a joyful movie it was but more importantly it had a powerful message - utilising retirees to mentor business owners, university graduates and teams and generally assist in bringing values back to a company.
It is a must watch for everyone in business and more especially those who own a business or those who are struggling to understand that while the world is changing - new positions being created, new ways of reaching target markets, new technology etc some things don't change and never will - like work ethics, standards, dress for success (yes look like you are successful and not just gotten out of bed) and how older people within the organisation can bring a sense of calm, stability, values as well as a common sense approach not necessarily learnt in the home or school these days and a life time of experience and support to an office environment in a non-threatening manner.
It made me think how lucky I am - I have 2 daughters - one who at 23 has her own business and one who is 24 and working her way through a large banking organisation, each week I get the joy of experiencing what Robert De Nersos character did in the movie by helping and mentoring both them through their daily business issues, how to overcome them, work with them with new technologies, research things for them to help them in their business lives - it along with my Volunteering keeps me connected with the business world, provides me with a sense of purpose while being able to help the next generation to learn, grow and take on issues in a supportive role. It is very rewarding and I believe they are more successful because of it and so are their companies. I believe more companies would prosper from utilising switched on Retirees.
Since I have been retired, I have had many people contact me to help them with their businesses, or with projects that simply don't get done in a busy office environment - I love these projects however it always amazes me that most people seem to think because I am retired I will work for nothing - guess what as a self funded retiree happy to work and keep connected, but I too like to be paid - unless of course I am volunteering.
Living and being around retired people most of the time now, there are so many people out there with so much life left in them, so much experience and so much knowledge like the Robert De Niro character they are busy doing things but could give so much more if only organisations understood the value they could give and not look at them as being old, not expect them to work 90 hour weeks but look at them as being experienced in lifes ups and downs, business up and downs and they have made it through, they have gone through changes in business and life and seen that while often it seems fruitless perseverance, support and people can get your through and they also understand that a good work life balance is important because without friends and love ones around you when you retire you have nothing no matter what you put into building the organisation.
Be bold and find energetic Retirees to help your business or people within your business, provide them with support and mentoring not from the latest speaker of the day or methodology of the day, not from some upmarket counsellor, but with someone who can support them in the office and help guide them in a unique manner (personally and professionally) so your business will thrive and in return maybe some older people will feel that their life experiences are not going to waste and they learn and grow as well.
Food for thought