As a baby boomer, you’re in a mature phase of your career, which might translate into a very demanding level of job responsibilities. So you might think it’s out-of-the-question crazy to propose a shortened workweek of, for example, three days a week. Unless…
Unless you propose a job sharing arrangement. Job sharing is a form of part-time work where two people share the responsibilities of one full-time position.
Five Advantages of Job Sharing for Baby Boomers
Job sharing offers several pluses as part of a pre-retirement lifestyle.
Fewer than 4 days a week — You can trim your work schedule to 2 to 3 days a week. For many high-responsibility jobs, that would be otherwise impractical or impossible. (Many who go part-time choose a four-day workweek.) Yet it’s enough for meaningful engagement at the job, plus partial income, plus lots of free time each week. Having a job partner to complete the workweek makes it possible.
Career momentum maintained —Though you work part time, your job position remains at full-tilt, full-time. This dispels concerns that your position is at risk of being marginalized if you go strictly part time, i.e., without a job partner.
Longer vacations —You’re in a stronger position to negotiate an extended vacation. If you like to travel, there are probably trip options you’re ready to take now that you didn’t have time or money for in earlier stages of your career. Job sharing allows for longer times away at one stretch because of partial work coverage—as long as you get agreement from your job partner, of course.
Better benefits —You could retain many coveted employee benefits (think health care coverage, earned PTO and 401(k) contributions) you wouldn’t get as a contracted worker. It depends on your employer’s policy, or the job sharing deal you negotiate where there is no policy.
It’s a phased retirement option — You might share your job with another baby boomer who also wants a transition phase before full retirement. Or you might set up a job-share with a younger employee, acting as a mentor or trainer before you make your eventual exit. Expectant or new parents may especially welcome an invitation to explore the possibility of sharing your job.
Could Your Job Be Redesigned to Fit Job Sharing?
Virtually any position can be redesigned into a job sharing arrangement. Including yours.
The Job Sharing Proposal Package includes a job restructuring worksheet that helps you answer to the question, “Exactly how will the work get done under your new job sharing arrangement?” If you have any questions, please let me know. I’m very accessible and would enjoy talking about your situation.