Wednesday, February 4, 2015

7 Steps to a Successful Encore Career

It's little wonder that baby boomers are flocking to second careers, 60 being the new 40 and all.

In addition to crunching the numbers before you punch out of your current job, there are a handful of less obvious considerations which, left unaddressed, could not only scuttle your startup but endanger your retirement. Health insurance and education costs, financing options, tax implications and Social Security timing all play vital roles in whether your new venture will sizzle or fizzle.

"Work is healthy as long as you feel you're in the driver's seat, and at 50 or 60 you can be, as long as you do your homework," says Kerry Hannon, author of "What's Next?" and "Great Jobs for Everyone 50+."

In the meantime, start to prepare your professional support network for your next chapter, advises Art Koff, CEO and founder of, a retiree job resource based in Chicago.

"You need to maintain your networking and continue to go to conventions and association meetings," he says. "It's totally necessary to maintain those contacts after you retire."  A lot may have changed since you first set your sights on your dream career. Use your last few years at your current job to explore whether that second act is still a good fit.

If you plan to simply hire on elsewhere, start by searching the job listings on, and  "That will rule out a lot of jobs that you might want but aren't equipped to handle and rule in some that maybe you weren't thinking of," says Koff. "It also gives an indication of how many of those jobs are out there."

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