A time old question and one I’ve been asking myself quite a lot recently. As a member of the 50’s are the new 30’s club (just) I’m more frequently asked to consider, by my own inner monologue whether the time is now to call it quits and sign up for my cardi and Werther’s originals? And, when the average age of the faces staring back at me on the daily Google meet is tops 30 its not surprising that this pops into my head quite a bit.
Another couple of questions lurking on the sidelines are ‘Am I in a young persons game?’ and ‘Can I add any value to my workplace?’
Well the answers are:
Yes you definitely can and this ‘Old dog’ passed her UX exam with flying colours last year. Not too shabby, and a hats off to the business for offering me the chance to try new things.
No, the game is still working for me otherwise my years of wisdom would tell me to stop.
And finally yes. My value is everything I’ve learned so far and can share with the team when I need to. How to work the problem, how to stay calm, how to recognize when people are struggling with work and/or home, how to add a bit of levity in a tricky spot, how to acknowledge when something is done well, how to be tough, how to be a support, a guide and a friend.
There are the obvious responses too, like:
‘Well you’ve achieved everything you need to now, right?’ or ‘Well you’ll retire soon won’t you?’
Well those answers are:
No, you can never achieve everything but you can try and come close.
No, retirement is not for now.
In all honesty, I’ve never really cared about my age, nor have I allowed external opinion to cloud my career choices. If I want to achieve a goal I make sure I put in the work to tick it off my list. This is a mindset that is age indifferent and allows mixed age groups to work together and to achieve great things. All it takes, and this is the money sentence, is a willing business to recognise that older isn’t an impediment and sometimes the old dogs can guide the pack to success. Fortunately for me our business does exactly that and that makes me pretty happy.
So, I think I’ll stick around for a bit if that’s ok, in my cardi too (shhh). I’m going to pass on the Werther’s though.