We interview Susan Spaulding, who helps corporate executives and business owners recalibrate for Life 2.0.
Coming to you from the 2 Boomer Broads Executive Dining Room
Entrepreneurs are much more used to recalibrating and reinventing themselves than those who have owned a business for a long time or worked in corporations. A person who has worked in a high-level position often finds it difficult to separate their true identity from their former life. However, many have transitioned to other ventures that are both life-full-filling and satisfying.
Now is a great time to tap into that.
One thing that keeps former executives from pursuing their dreams, after retirement, is that they have a hard time dealing with the fact that they may have to spend part of their hard-earned money to do what they love.
Sharone quotes from Hello Dolly,
“ Money is like manure. It doesn’t do you any good unless you spread it around and help young things grow.”
Susan tells the story of a man who became a consultant after leaving a corporate job. He calls the money he makes “Monopoly Money,” and has chosen to use it to help friends and others in need.
As Baby Boomers, we’re still young at retirement age. (65) There’s plenty of time to shapeshift into whatever floats our boat.
Susan suggests that you do small scale experiments to find out what truly interests you.
How to recalibrate to Life 2.0
Life 2.0 is whatever or however you want to define your life. It’s about what’s next and is the discovery process of identifying who you are separate from where you’ve been. Build a story around your interests, skills, expertise, passions, put together a plan, and the story you want to put forward, and start to experiment. Then, be ready to recalibrate and reinvent.
For one thing, you’re not as confined as you had been. (with business responsibilities or kids)
In her book, “Recalibrate for Life 2.0 – Transition Stories for Business Leaders,” Susan interviewed a dozen business executives and business owners who gave her tips. (they include lawyers, bankers, entertainment, and small business owners)
- It’s about being relevant. You do that by remaining open to new skills and new ways. Look for new interests and pursue them whether it’s online, through a class or otherwise.
- Where can you add value?
- How do you want to be viewed?
Sometimes couples, who have both been in business, experience conflicts, especially if one is not in sync with the other’s reinvention plans. They’ve invested more time at work than at home. When they leave their jobs, suddenly they’re home and don’t know how to live with each other. Their lives, which had previously been divergent, are now converging.
Others think they have it all figured out when they exit a job and it has to be a big idea. When they’re given permission to think it doesn’t have to be a big idea, their pursuit becomes more palatable and doable.
An executive may have a harder time letting go of his or her position than an employee. The bigger the corporation, the more of a box that person is in. The higher a person goes up the corporate ladder, the more resources, and perks and it’s hard to do without.
Business owners, like other entrepreneurs, are used to the fact that they have to recalibrate their businesses to deal with change and challenges making it easier for them than those who have been in a corporate environment for a long time.
Successful executive recalibrations
One lawyer became a photographer by taking classes and online workshops.
A banking executive took his banking knowledge to the urban core and now helps those who have difficulty with finances. He also travels, but does it for the purpose of giving back. This is called VolunTourism.
An executive tried becoming a consultant but found he missed being part of a team and the youth in his industry. He’s now back in the game.
Another lawyer, who did acquisitions and knew how non-profits worked, found a small non-profit and became its executive director. He’s able to make some money, contribute and is a leader in his community.
Mentoring – giving back to the younger generation by teaching them skills.
Susan continues to work with businesses to help them identify what the best market-driven growth strategy would be for an effective exit. She also helps businesses and individuals make a smooth exit and transition.
For more examples of ways you can recalibrate to Life 2.0, please listen to the entire podcast by clicking on the player above.