In 2017 one fifth of new business start ups were headed by those over 55, with women leading the way.
People 50 plus account for less than one third of the workforce, yet account for over 40% of new business start ups. Furthermore, those over 65 and self employed have more than doubled this decade.
And why not?
“There is a whole third life that people look forward to: it’s not just about sitting under a tree in the sun, it’s about staying active and keeping the brain stimulated. One way to do that is to keep working. And there is a financial imperative to make sure the future is secure as you live longer.” Liz Earle quoted in the Guardian
The good news is that new businesses set up by those 50 plus have been shown to be more likely to succeed than the average. Experience counts for a lot when making the leap.
Many who have had corporate careers who feel they have been managed out of their jobs post 50, have the funds available to act on dreams to go it alone.
Many more are driven by financial need to find a way to keep earning well past the retirement dates we have been used to. For those that have been able to retire, having a side hustle that supplements the meagre state pension can make the difference between surviving and thriving.
Need and necessity aside, the fact is that we are living longer than ever before and so long as we are lucky enough to stay healthy we can look forward to another 30-40 years post 50. We don't have to "wind down" any more - many of us just got started at 50!
For myself, I have to say that having become self employed at 50, the past 8 years have been the most challenging, stimulating and exciting years of my working life. I have made so many mistakes and missteps, learned so much about myself and my own abilities that every small triumph is a cause for celebration. I am proud of what I have achieved, proud of myself and am so glad I took that leap of faith.
What would you do if you if you could work for yourself?
The Guardian: https://bit.ly/2vlCTsi
Financial Times: https://on.ft.com/2kZ81V5