• Changing careers, changing jobs, new job, new career, career transition

From Career to Consulting

If you’re wrapping up a successful career, pursuing a retirement career might be the last thing on your mind, but many new retirees put their decades of expertise and skills to use through consulting and freelance jobs.

Jerry Stewart, a 67-year-old engineer from Petal, Mississippi, recently retired. While he is enjoying time spent taking vacations with his wife and working on projects around the house, he hasn’t ruled out consulting.

“With 42 years of experience in my field, I have something to offer businesses that may need perspective on certain projects,” says Stewart. “Working three days a week for a couple months a year would be a great way to use my skills and earn extra income.”

Due to limited resources, many companies may be looking for someone with a wealth of experience they can hire for individual projects instead of taking on a full-time employee. Retired consultants benefit from the flexibility of still being able to pursue other interests.

If you’re thinking about consulting or freelance work during retirement, consider the following:

  • Network now. Sprucing up your LinkedIn page or résumé can show your skills to potential employers. Talk with colleagues about your plans and part ways with your current employer on good terms—they may need your knowledge again in the future.
  • Look at how you want to invest your time and energy. What new projects would interest you most? What should your rate be? How much time are you willing to spend on a project? Outline parameters that will work best for you as you enter into a post-retirement career.
  • Boost your investments. Consider talking with a financial planner about how you can continue to reach your personal financial goals.

“I’m lucky enough to have made good decisions when I was working, including investing in Roth IRAs and annuities to balance my retirement fund,” says Stewart. “I look forward to what the future holds.”

If you’re earning extra income in retirement, discover how you can put it to work for your future with Retirement Planning and Trust Services. Visit our Retirement Planning section to learn more.

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