Once you have passed through the bliss of those months just after retirement, shaking off stress, reconnecting with the grand kids, taking more walks…smelling the roses, it’s time to consider part-time work. I needed a supplemental income to my Social Security and IRA checks.
After working in the insurance business for 40+ years, this was to be my last option. Once I decided to retire, I did consider working part-time for my employer of the last 20 years. However, I really wanted to do something different, a new challenge. So here is how I went about finding a new and totally different part-time career decision.
Last July after I announced my retirement plans, I contacted three companies that I had served as a volunteer or worked for in the past. I have been serving as a volunteer at the YMCA in York and Manos House in Columbia. I had no idea what jobs might be available, especially since most of my formal education was insurance or business related. I sent a brief email announcing my coming retirement to three places and inquired about potential job openings where I could join them as a part-time employee. The other company, Market Place Chaplains, was one I previously worked for to gain some ministry experience.
The YMCA advised they would keep me in mind and I still volunteer there once a month. The Manos House did not respond, this is a youth detention facility that houses teenage boys who are court ordered there due to alcohol or drug convictions. Market Place Chaplains said yes we have an opening and when can you start? When I advised my present employer of my plans to retire, I gave about 75 days’ notice, so I had to pass on this offer. So here I am, retired and about 3-4 weeks later I started to begin my search.
Networking and contacting people you already know is by far the best option. We had a “Retirement Party” and my wife invited everybody we knew. They all wanted to know my plans for the future so I shared that I was looking for a fun part time job. Other networking tools to use are Facebook and LinkedIn. They great ways to update your profile and announce your retirement plans, you could generate some offers here. I do remember telling friends I would be willing to do anything, stock grocery shelves, security work, maybe even provide home care for senior adults. Was I getting desperate already?
I found Craigslist to be filled with job opportunities, so this became a daily place to search. Since I love to write, there were some gigs that opened doors for articles and blogs. I did find a job working part-time security and was hired at $10 an hour which was a fraction of what I was making in the insurance business. Later I will share what happened here…. Craigslist is a great option.
Office of the Aging
This was an option to search daily for employers willing to hire us older folks. Not everyone is interested in hiring seniors, especially outside your area of past employment experience. I found out most wanted to offer somewhere between minimum wage and $11 an hour to start. (http://web.co.lancaster.pa.us/150/Aging)
If you haven’t been to one of these yet, be prepared for an interesting event! I was nearly overrun by walkers and aggressive seniors plowing thru the aisles grabbing every free give away from each vendor. There were vendors like funeral homes, senior centers, handicap and home elevator contractors, assisted living centers… on and on. There were a few places actually taking basic information for both volunteers and part-time jobs. Go early and miss the crowds if you decide to consider this option. I did but doubt I will return. (http://www.50plusexpopa.com/)
Help wanted ads
Help wanted ads would be my least likely option, who do you know who has ever been hired by following up with one of these? Have you noticed most daily or Sunday newspapers “Help Wanted” sections are nearly nonexistent? Employers must pay to put in ads there, but on Craigslist it’s free to post a job opening. Consider your local “Shoppers Guide” or “Merchandiser” as a better option, check yours and since they seem to be regional, contact friends in the next adjacent community for their copy.
Now you have a good start to finding some job options to consider. Of course pray about where you belong and look for something you will enjoy. I did find nearly all part-time jobs required working at least one weekend day and holidays. I ended up taking the security job as it seemed interesting, however I would have to buy uniforms, work evening hours, commute about 15 minutes from home, and the pay was $10 an hour. So I did all the necessary clearances and background checks. On my paid orientation day as a new employee, I got a call from Manos House. The said my email with my attached resume got lost. I had sent a follow up email about three months after my first contact back in July. They asked me to come in as soon as possible. One of the other hats I wear is my wife and I have been running a Faith based recovery program for many years and I was serving as a lay pastor. Manos House works with teens with the same issues so I had some knowledge of the struggles they were facing. I was offered a job as Staff Youth Worker, pay was the same as the security job and it was 5 minutes from home. There were no uniforms to buy and it sounded like a challenge. So I have been at my part-time job 2 months now. I like the work and it’s a chance to make a difference in the lives of young teens who have made some bad choices.
So from the time I started my search to the date I started working was four months. It takes time, don’t give up, and consider each option …. find something you will enjoy!