How will Boomers handle the retirement boomerang?

Almost two years ago, I wrote a blog post entitled “The Retirement Boomerang.” In that post, I cited a study that showed almost half of workers age 65 or above who retired “boomeranged” back to work. They didn’t necessarily want to return to the same job, but they felt a sense of loss when they stopped working.

Many Boomers leave the workforce and then seek out a new career, or a second act, rather than pursue traditional retirement. My wife and I experienced this phenomenon when we left busy professional careers. We weren’t…

“DE&I” is all the rage. Does it represent commitment or is it all for show?

Protesting crowd with one person holding a sign, “No Justice No Peace”
Protesting crowd with one person holding a sign, “No Justice No Peace”
Clay Banks on Unsplash

Have you noticed the term “DE&I” bandied about lately by politicians, business leaders and heads of institutions? If you’re “woke,” then you know it stands for “Diversity, Equity & Inclusion.” What does that really mean? In the context of government or business policies, it basically represents treating everyone equally, regardless of social standing, race, sexual preference or any other distinguishing characteristic. Think of it as a three-legged stool that broadly applies to welcoming in people of less-privileged identities. …

What would it be like if generations really got along?

Nathan Anderson, Unsplash

One powerful and potentially lasting way to fight against ageism is to foster greater connections between older and younger generations. The generational divide — caused as much by tribalism as by age — may seem difficult to overcome, but there are beacons of light in the darkness that can help us envision an intergenerational world. Here are three innovative examples: — Encore is a vanguard in bringing together generations. According to this nonprofit organization, “For the first time in U.S. history, people over 60 outnumber people under 18, raising fears of widening generational divides. sees another path —…

Why the WHO just started a global campaign to combat ageism

World Health Organization

Who would think that WHO (the World Health Organization) would launch something called the “Global Campaign to Combat Ageism”? But they just did, stating this compelling reason:

“Ageism is the stereotyping, prejudice, and discrimination against people on the basis of their age. Ageism is pervasive and has profound negative consequences on older adults’ health and wellbeing. We need to act now to improve the lives of people everywhere. …

“Boomer-preneurs” have a strong chance of success.

Coffee cup with the word “Begin.”
Coffee cup with the word “Begin.”
Danielle MacInnes on

The number of Boomers who have retired in 2020 dramatically increased. Pandemic-related job losses, as well as ageism, contributed to many more Boomers leaving the workforce in 2020. These factors suggest that the U.S. job market won’t be a particularly good one for Boomers in 2021.

At the same time, however, the U.S. Census Bureau is reporting a significant uptick in new business applications. For example, for the week ending October 3, 2020 — while the pandemic continued to rage around the U.S. …

Pandemics, recessions and other bad stuff create an emotional longing for an idealized past.

Old fashioned watch in sand
Old fashioned watch in sand

Nostalgia is a powerful and often necessary emotional cloak— a way for humans to shield themselves from unpleasant contemporary challenges.

During this pandemic, haven’t you found comfort and consolation in favorite foods, music and TV shows? Think about how many of those comforting things have percolated up from your past. Childhood memories are especially powerful nostalgic triggers because, for many of us, our childhood home represented comfort and security. …

Why starting a business as a couple could be a minefield or a gold mine.

Couple working at a computer
Couple working at a computer
Photo by bruce mars on Unsplash

Some couples would never in their wildest dreams want to own a business together. Others might think the idea is a dream come true.

At a time when the economy is shaky and you may not want to depend on someone else for your livelihood, starting a business together could be an attractive alternative. If you have even the slightest interest, I’m going to discuss the relationship side, not the business side, of owning a business as a couple. I’ll lay it all out for you: Why working together could be a minefield or a gold mine.

What makes me…

“Discrimination” doesn’t mean what you think.

Illustration of various people social networking
Illustration of various people social networking
Gordon Johnson,

My 40-plus year career in direct marketing taught me a lot about marketing — including how to discriminate.

It turns out that one of the most important direct marketing principles has a lot to do with discrimination, but it is based on the secondary definition of discrimination: “Recognition and understanding of the difference between one thing and another.” Unfortunately, most of us know discrimination only by its primary definition: “The unjust or prejudicial treatment of people or things, especially on the grounds of race, age, or sex.”

Direct marketing taught me to discriminate through…

Symbolic or Systemic?

Stop Hate for Profit Logo
Stop Hate for Profit Logo

The “#StopHateforProfit” campaign is a boycott by businesses who agree to pause their advertising on Facebook for the month of July. According to the campaign’s organizers, “it is a response to Facebook’s long history of allowing racist, violent and verifiably false content to run rampant on its platform.” The backers of the campaign are themselves an interesting group: ADL (the Anti-Defamation League), NAACP, Sleeping Giants, Color of Change, Free Press and Common Sense. These organizations have distinct and diverse missions, but they’ve come together with the common goal of stamping out hate online.

What they think about…

The huge cultural shift happening today is reminiscent of another time in American history.

Black is Beautiful button
Black is Beautiful button
North Carolina Museum of History

The Black Lives Matter protests of 2020 are likely to result in many transformative changes. One change already in the works is the decision by large consumer goods corporations to examine the racist legacies of their brands.

Aunt Jemima, Cream of Wheat and Uncle Ben are three brands that, because of racial stereotypes, will be eliminated. Others are sure to follow. Each of these brands has considerable equity that will be lost when their names and visual identities are changed — but this is a moment that calls for dramatic action, even in the brand world.

Discarding racially insensitive brands…

Barry Silverstein

I’m an author, blogger and retired marketing professional. Visit my website to learn more:

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