Encore Careers: Working Beyond 65

by Mary on November 4th, 2016

Seems like it used to be that retirement couldn’t come soon enough. But now? More than ever, older Americans are choosing to work beyond age 65. In fact, thanks to Baby Boomers, the number of older workers in the country has never been larger. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, almost 20 percent of Americans 65 and above have chosen to continue working.

People cite a variety of reasons for working after 65. Employee benefits, more time to save, and a higher Social Security payout are common motivations. Plus, a lot of people like to work and feel that the classic “full retirement” would just be too boring.

Interestingly, when Americans choose to work rather than retire they don’t simply remain at their current jobs but opt for a new job entirely after quitting their careers. An AARP survey found that post-career people seeking a new job want a pleasant work environment and a flexible schedule.

The book Great Jobs for Everyone 50+, published by AARP, identifies the highest paying jobs for older adults:

  1. Project-Based Consultant – Consultants are brought into companies to address particular problems or work on a targeted project. Focus on the industry that you gained expertise in all those years. If your skills are transferable to other fields (e.g., legal services, accounting, HR professional) you can offer your services to companies in industries you have a passion for – recreation and sports, entertainment, or charitable organizations.
  2. Market and Survey Researcher – This is a great job for you if you’re a retired teacher. Years of practice of giving quizzes might be the key! Researchers conduct surveys on the phone, online, door to door and by mail; typically they also write a report of the findings.
  3. Travel Nurse – Those who have an Associate’s or Bachelor’s degree in nursing and the appropriate license are in demand as travel nurses.
  4. Dietician and Nutritionist – There’s a growing need for degreed, licensed dieticians, nutritionists and other skilled health care workers.
  5. Santa Claus – Interested in seasonal work and love kids? Dress up as Santa Claus for malls and other locations. Twinkle in the eye required. White beard provided upon request. Bonuses are often paid in cookies.
  6. Retirement Coach – A background in human resources, counseling or teaching can translate into a job helping people figure out what they want to do after they retire.
  7. Nonprofit Fundraiser – Working for a nonprofit organization can be rewarding for you and the organization, whether the job is applying for grants, writing fundraising letters, or planning events. If you had a career in public relations, marketing or sales, this might be a good fit.
  8. Casino Worker – If you like working at night and want a job where you can be active and moving, consider casino work. This requires a state license. Check for requirements with your state’s gaming commission or casino control commission.
  9. Registered Tax Preparer – This high paying seasonal job is great if you like working with people, numbers and details, even if you don’t have an accounting degree. You must take some continuing education and pass a competency exam to obtain a tax preparer identification number.
  10. Mediator – This can be a work-at-home job. While you don’t have to have a law degree, many do. Still, if you have a background in marriage counseling or settling workplace issues you probably have patience and the listening skills needed for mediating.

new career opportunities after 65

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