Most executives are focused on their current business – building revenues, managing costs and keeping employees productive. Those who are looking at the bigger picture are already concerned with the developing demographic clouds.
Most observers think it will take another four or five years for most executives to even notice that a major problem has developed. But today CNN ran yet another story alerting those who are farsighted to the rising challenge.
Today, approximately 10,000 Baby Boomers turn 65. Tomorrow, the same number will turn 65. And approximately the same number will turn sixty-five each day for the next nineteen years.
Managers, who are currently hiring in lower-cost countries, are delighted to use retirement related attrition to manage part of their need to reduce their domestic workforce. In addition, the recent decline in real estate values and the performance of the stock market over the last decade has some people retiring later.
But even your most driven, energetic and healthy employees cannot keep aging at bay. (Recently we had several reminders that even the healthiest can have life threatening accidents or heart attacks.) As they approach their late 60′s, many people will find themselves unable to work full time, even if they want to and the job is available. In addition, many of your most successful employees are likely to want to shift to work part-time or retire early.
So, while the boomers may be willing to stay a bit longer than their original plan, or take early retirement to help their firm’s near-term budget, farsighted managers are going to be watching the age and health related forced attition. With 10,000 more Baby Boomers reaching sixty-five every day, people will be leaving the workforce. Those managers who are looking at the broader picture today meed to be concerned with protecting the company’s culture, tacit knowledge and intellectual capital as their most senior people leave the scene.
The single most important reason to initiate or increase the reach of your organization’s mentoring programs is the retirement or forced attrition of the Baby Boomers. Most companies have already significantly shrunk the population of employees at the next level of experience.
Mentoring can help the organization retain the lessons of their experience. Mentoring can leverage their experience and can be used to keep retirees available as a resource. Some companies are even pairing the recent Baby Boomer retirees with ”attention sponge” Millennials.
Mentor Resources provides software for the administration of mentoring programs. We look forward to working with your organization.
ps. Now, if you want more motivation for improving your mentoring program and increasing employee engagement, click through and read this article. Topic for tomorrow’s blog!