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Working in Retirement

How to be a competitive employee for decades to come

Deborah Russell, the Director of Workforce Issues with AARP, recently addressed some of the common issues faced by Americans 50 and over in the workplace. In an interview with Forbes magazine, she discussed everything from finding a new job to asking for a promotion. 

Russell particularly emphasized the fact that baby boomers are continuing to work longer than ever. She explained that one of the most prominent trends she has seen recently is that of the mature worker staying employed. Consequently, offices will become much more multi-generational than in the past.

She advised that boomers who are currently looking for jobs to begin a search online. They should also get engaged in social media, because websites like LinkedIn are great ways to launch your resume online and show off your technological savvy.

Journalist Mark Miller, who writes about retirement and aging issues, seems to agree with this tactic. "[Social media is] essential, I think. LinkedIn and Twitter, especially, can play a big role in helping any job hunter, and older workers are no exception. It's hard to overstate the importance of networking, differentiating yourself..." he told Forbes in a different interview. "Social media platforms offer some important means to those ends through sharing expertise and making new connections."

Russell also suggest that, if you have taken a break from work, your resume should show that you have been broadening your horizons. She recommends taking lifelong learning classes or engaging in volunteering activities to round out a resume.

If you're already employed, but looking for a promotion or a new opportunity, Russell explained to Forbes that you should justify the move with a proposal or presentation of your accomplishments and show it to an employer.

Overall, it seems that many baby boomers are thinking about new career possibilities more than a full-on retirement. A Del Webb survey found that more than 70 percent of baby boomers plan to work in some capacity in the near future.

Consequently, Del Webb retirement communities are designed with the working retiree in mind. From state-of-the-art fitness centers with later hours to social halls that can easily host late-night gatherings, homeowners can enjoy all of the luxuries of retirement while still pursuing a career at the same time. Better yet, if employees feel like telecommuting, communities like Del Webb Orlando have spaces such as the Wall Street Room, which provides laptops and wireless connectivity.  

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