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This Not So Retired Life UPDATE (1-22-17)

Welcome to This Not So Retired Life, a podcast that spotlights inspiring individuals and their non-traditional approach to "retired life."

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Who is your idea designed for and how does it support the dreams and obligations of those 50 and older?

To start, we are targeting the following three groups: 1. Individuals 50+ looking for a more fulfilling job. 2. Individuals late in their career who have hit a crisis (e.g. laid off, sick family members, divorce) 3. Millenials just starting to plan their careers and saving. These three groups will find value in the podcast for different reasons, however, they share a common need to shift their perception of what's possible. Our goal is to provide the spark of inspiration to kickstart that shift.

The Current Paradigm:

The belief that retirement is a predetermined age, around 60 or 65, when we stop working and start "living", was formed at a time when life expectancy was much lower. Now, we could live to be twice that age.  However, our cultural norms have not caught up. 

The Challenge: 

So the question becomes, does retirement have to be all or nothing? How might we inspire and empower these individuals to re-frame the way they approach retirement so they can live a long, fulfilling life,  in a financially-sustainable way?

For some, retiring at 60 is still desirable and feasible.  For others, this is not the case. Whether because they simply want to keep working, they're looking to try something new, or they need extra money to support multiple generations, there is a large population of individuals between 50-65 that are looking for an alternative to "traditional retirement." 

Our Solution:

This solution is intended to spark new thinking. It is not a financial solution...exactly. Rather, it is intended to be a catalyst for change. By sharing inspiring stories of real people in their late careers/early retirement who are discovering new careers, part time jobs, working in their communities, or starting businesses, we hope to make this new, more financially-sustainable model, more accessible...and maybe even desirable! 

How does it work?

For many reasons, these stories will be gathered and shared at a local level. First, we would like the stories to be culturally relevant. Second, we want to share tangible, relate-able stories that help inspire action. We'd like to highlight real models (as opposed to role models) that listeners have a higher likelihood of knowing and potentially even meeting with. However, the stories will likely be housed on a common platform, for those interested in stories from different communities.

We will leverage local journalists, entrepreneurs, credit-unions, and/or communities to find initial sponsors and interviewers.  Each interviewer will receive a toolkit which shows these sponsors how to find, conduct, edit, and post local interviews. Where we may suggest ideas for putting this idea into action, each community will develop its own approach to curating and sharing depending on its culture. 

Assumptions and design questions for prototyping:

  • A podcast is enough to move someone to action after years of thinking in a           different way
  • Interviewees and listeners would actually suggest other people to interview
  • People want to work more and find a new job their passionate about
  • A podcast is the “correct” form of media for reaching this population of people
  • What questions inspire people to act?
  • How might we reach a broad audience?

First podcast prototype: Sit Down and Think

Please listen and provide feedback on our first Podcast prototype! How do you feel after listening to the podcast? What are you left wondering? How could it be improved to reach a broader audience?

Insights and Implications gathered from prototypes

What early, lightweight experiment might you try out in your own community to find out if the idea will meet your expectations?

I will start by interviewing people I know who have started second careers after 50 or are working part-time and share their stories on a blog. I would make sure to add a comments and "share" section to learn about how people are taking in and reacting to the information. I will also contact the local NPR station and morning shows to see if they'd be interested in running some of these stories.

What skills, input or guidance from the OpenIDEO community would be most helpful in building out or refining your idea?

What type of media does this population consume? what format is most digestible and approachable? How could you actually help plan, not just educate people on what's possible? How could we package and share the stories? What institutions could we collaborate with?

Tell us about your work experience:

I have worked with human-centered design as a way of approaching problem solving with kids, in non-profits, with cities and corporations.

Please check all that apply:

  • I'm not currently involved in a credit union, but am curious to learn more!

This idea emerged from

  • A Design Jam

How would you describe this idea while in an elevator with someone?

For the past few generations, we have operated by an unwritten law that retirement is a prescribed time in life when we stop working and start enjoying ourselves...if we have the funds to do so. By sharing examples of individuals 50+ who are reframing this construct with renewed purpose we can inspire current and future generations to do the same.

How might your idea be transferable to a large number of people?

Because the stories will be captured online, they are available for people around the world. We would like to start locally so that people in the community can relate to the stories shared. This process is then easily replicable by other communities who want to share the stories of their own residents. It can also be scaled nationally or internationally by creating a website or app where these stories are housed.

How do you plan to measure the impact of your idea?

-Number of listeners -Number of times its shared -Comments posted -Rate at which individuals are recommended to be interviewed -Follow up with survey: ask individuals to share stories of how they were impacted by this podcast

What are your immediate next steps after the challenge?

Finding a few initial interviews and a platform or organization that wants to share the first few stories, lend their editing/recording resources. Find sponsors or organization that would want to advertise their services that relate to the purpose of the podcasts.


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