Tuesday, October 21, 2008


Recognize these characters? They are the famous Walt Disney Seven Dwarfs from the Disney movie SNOW WHITE. Why have I featured them so prominently, because I think they have a positive message for us about work.

A real life person, Lee Iacocca, also has a positive message about work. It was the July, 1996 FORTUNE cover featuring Lee Iacocca with the headline- "HOW I FLUNKED RETIREMENT" that was the catalyst for us to write DON'T RETIRE, REWIRE! Lee Iacocca said he flunked retirement because he had underplanned his life, his activities, not his finances. Today it's a different story. Today's economic crisis, the surrounding chaos and impact on our investments, is driving many people into considering going back to work, if they're not there already. Lee Iacocca hadn't planned it, but he has rewired several times....he has gone back to work...sure it was to buy businesses, to write books....maybe not our league, but the key is is that he is doing work he enjoys!

Work is only a bad four letter word if you hate what you're doing!

I am a "realistic optimist," not a Pollyanna, and maybe it sounds corny but I think we should adapt the tune that the seven dwarfs sang-----"hi ho hi ho it's off to work we go..."

Much of the media is reporting the horror stories. They're not giving their readers or viewers any sense of hope, or any tactics or ideas to pursue. I'm known as the "rewiring guru" and I take that title and coinciding responsibility seriously so I'm here to give retirees a few ideas...BUT THE TRUTH IS, THESE IDEAS WORK FOR PEOPLE REGARDLESS OF THEIR AGE.

1) Before you charge out, use the ZEN philosophy- You can't see your reflection in rushing water.

2) Think about how you want to work. --Do you need full time, part time, seasonal, or flex time and how do you define that for yourself?

3) Try combining your interests and your skills. Yes, times are challenging, but go after work that you think you'll like and that you would look forward to doing.

4) Your resume tells some of your story, but why not create an accomplishment sheet for yourself. Having a list of your successes will help you recognize all you have done and allow you to determine what might be applicable to a new work situation. Plus it will help those you are networking with understand you better!

5) Manage your expectations.

We're all in this together and I hope to be sending along ideas with some regularity...and remember...breathe...

Wednesday, October 15, 2008


The book, A TALE OF TWO CITIES, begins with the line, "it was the best of times, it was the worst of times" and for many that line sums up life today, both here and abroad. For over 15 years I have worked in the areas of executive search, and personal and professional growth and development. Writing DON'T RETIRE, REWIRE! was a logical output of that work since so many of us Boomers were looking ahead. Well we're still looking ahead....but the future has changed and for many it's pretty fuzzy. Many people feel betrayed by life, their employer, WALL STREET, and the government. As one friend said, " there's no place to run, and no place to hide!" So , breathe, and let's begin.

The concept of "rewiring" is not age or life stage specific, so it's not surprising that I have been doing some programs for outplacement firms, churches, and non profits to help people look at the future and their job options with a new set of eyes.

My talks haven't just been about tactics and strategies but about pain, being angry and in denial and how you need to rewire some of your energy and time so you can face the future more positively. I'm going to offer ideas on job hunting but also on keeping your sanity, and that is the focus of my blog today.

Here's a few basic ideas we need to be doing:

1. Breathe. Feel your stomach go out when you inhale. Focus on your belly. Slow down.
2. Eat. What foods are you eating? Junk or comfort food? Go for greens and protein.
3. Listen. What are you saying to yourself? Is it negative or positive? Don't depress yourself.
4.Watch. Watch what you're viewing on TV. Don't overload on financial news or politics!
5.Fitness. Get off your duff. Take a walk. Go to the gym. Walk
around the office. the block, the company parking lot!
My goal is to have you rewire some of your energy---even in a small way---do something different. You need it; I know I do!
Stay tuned.