Next For Me hosts events across the country. We discuss the future of our 50+ generation. We cover work, finances, our communities and what’s next. It’s a great way to connect with people who are thinking about these things too.
Last week we visited Ohio for 3 events in Hudson, Columbus and Dayton. We partnered with Donna Kastner at Retirepreneur and she was a most gracious host in her home state. We even joked that we were on the road like a band on tour.
By the time we finished Donna observed,
“I think one more important dynamic emerged by the time we hit Dayton… we care about this and the people in the room noticed and appreciated this.”
The program was around the theme “Too Young to be Done: What’s Next For You?”
Longevity advances have graced us with a vibrant new talent pool – those at or nearing their 60s who are too young to be done, but who crave meaningful, flexible work for this encore career chapter, which could span a decade or more.
While everyone arrived and enjoyed light snacks Donna created a conversation starter with the questions:
What prompted you to attend this workshop?
- Explore possibilities for a future encore career chapter.
- Already have an idea — need to flesh it out further.
- Already freelancing — looking to expand.
- Something else.
The rooms were buzzing in no time and then everyone grabbed a seat and the program began.
The Power of Positivity
Jeff Tidwell from Next For Me discussed how their company was hatched. It began because of the staggering numbers of people who will be in transition after 50. We’ve all seen the Boomer “doom & gloom” headlines. He soon learned that as serious as the issues are, their audiences wanted to hear stories of positive transformation. How someone faced a challenge and made their way through it.
The adjustment in the editorial positioning spilled over into their strategy internally and in how they sold their products. You could say they are practicing what they publish.
Generational Blending: The Next Big Thing
Before starting Donna asked the group to each have a quick conversation with their neighbor.
What’s next for YOU? What barriers are preventing you from conquering “What’s Next?
She then opened the topic of multiple generations working together for better outcomes. New evidence shows that mixed-age teams outperform same-age teams. This means more companies will be seeking modern elders like you to join or coach these multi-gen teams.
Donna has a great “I’m from New York originally” style that is fast-paced and a joy to watch in motion. Without wasting any time, she got the groups engaged by asking them if they could imagine a business or role in their future what kind of business would it be? Business to Consumer, Business to Business, or “I don’t know”. And then, was their dream to “Make a Buck vs. Make a Difference”?
She addressed the sometimes “way off” stereotypes of each generation and some tips on avoiding them and being genuinely engaged with people outside of your comfort bubble. Also, she shared some data that illustrates how the 3 traditional life stages are out the window in a time when we’ll live much longer and have many transitions into other stages.
Never Too Old to Get Rich
And to conclude attendees enjoyed a short video interview with Kerry Hannon. The new book (reviewed here) by career transition expert Kerry Hannon is a roadmap for anyone age 50+ looking to be their own boss and launch their dream business.
We stayed late a couple of nights finishing up the conversations that the program prompted. There were cheers and tears as folks looked head-on into their futures.
There was a lot to absorb in the quick tour we made. We do know that whether in the midwest or any other place in the country, these topics are top of mind for millions of Americans. Attendees connected with like-minded people who are striving to answer this big question: What’s next for me?