A member of the Chamber of Commerce Professionals Group on Facebook asked:
Curious….if your organization has a retiree rate and if your organization has a retiree group or council that meets regularly…I’d like to hear from you on what the mission and purpose of the group is for your Chamber.
We spend a lot of time talking about Millennials and worrying about them joining the chamber. Part of that is because they are the future of business and part because of their sheer numbers. The other side of that hourglass population are the Boomers. These folks are heading towards retirement. Is your chamber ready?
The question on the Facebook group is a good one. While many put off their retirement due to the economic downturn a few years back, retirement for this large population is inevitable. What is your community doing to prepare for it?
Keeping Retirees Involved
A good start in getting/keeping them involved is mentoring your young professionals. Many YPs want to start their own businesses. Having guidance from people who have done that provides valuable insight. It also affords the opportunity for the YPs to show your retirees something about social media or other technology. Mentoring and reverse mentoring keep both generations engaged.
If you don’t have a retiree tier, make sure they know they are welcome to volunteer for your chamber. Many retirees want to stay involved in the business community so if you don’t create a special group for them, make sure you market your need, or desire, for volunteers.
If you have active retirees and business leaders, consider approaching them to speak at some of your lunch and learn sessions. The information they’ve acquired over a lifetime in business is invaluable.
People who have spent years serving the community often don’t want to give that up just because they retire. Make sure your retiree population knows they’re wanted and needed.
They want to serve so help them do it. Think of ways they can continue to be of benefit to your community.
Guest post by Christina Green
Image credit: Norma Davey