‘Lost generation’ of older workers looking for fulfillment on the job

HR, over-50s not necessarily aligned when it comes to T&D, retirement planning: Report
By Sarah Dobson
|Canadian HR Reporter|Last Updated: 04/01/2016

As people live and work longer, a four-generation workforce — where staff in their 70s and 80s will work alongside those in their 20s — is becoming a reality. But, too often, the focus of HR and managers is on the younger generations — educating and developing them to reach their full potential — while ignoring the other end of the spectrum, according to a report from Ashridge Executive Education in the United Kingdom.

There needs to be a focus on the “lost generation” of the over-50s, said the authors of Don’t Put Baby (Boomers) in the Corner, to keep them engaged, giving them fulfilling and sustainable employment, and using their skills and experience for the benefit of the economy.

When older workers were asked what work gives them — so what they would miss if they were not working — the top selection was “mental stimulation” (63 per cent), found Ashridge’s survey of 1,834 people in the U.K., including 1,426 aged 50 and older and 408 HR staff. That was followed by fulfillment (59 per cent), a sense of purpose (49 per cent) and pride (46 per cent).