Challenges and Opportunities
New Horizons in Management series
Edited by Ronald J. Burke, Cary Cooper and Alexander-Stamatios Antoniou
Chapter 9: Motivational goals and competencies of older workers who re-engaged in the workforce
There is a growing discussion of the impact of the ageing global workforce on society. Most projections suggest that the labour force of the future will become older and increasingly ethnoculturally diverse, with some significant changes to be observed in the years following 2020. The purpose of this study is to develop a better understanding of the motivational goals and competencies of older workers who re-engaged in the workforce. In particular, we interviewed people who are self-directed in their goals and how they responded to life span and interpersonal issues. Our data were generated through a purposive sampling approach. We conducted interviews with 25 individuals (7 women and 18 men) over 55 years who have retired and continue to work in some capacity, or who have reached a retirement threshold and choose to continue working. We found three sets of competencies that self-directed older workers illustrated in being successful in adjusting to life span issues and other obstacles they faced: sustaining motivation, adapting to life span issues, and sustaining relationships.
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