What’s next? That’s a question that we’ve asked many times throughout our careers. And despite having 50-plus years of collective experience between us, it’s not one that we intend to stop asking anytime soon. In fact, for the sake of the insurance industry, we encourage more people—especially our female colleagues—to do the same.

Executive Summary

Experienced insurance professionals seeking new challenges may provide opportunity to stave off the talent deficiency and even boost leadership diversity, allowing more women to step into executive roles, say two executives working through their "second acts." Here, they also give tips for other Act II performers embarking on similar journeys.

As the retirement age continues to increase, many experienced professionals are not looking at the stereotypical retirement anytime soon. Instead, we are looking ahead to another 10, 15 or even 20 years of productive, profitable employment—the “second act” of our careers, as many call it.

Switching It Up

According to a recent report from the American Institute for Economic Research (AIER), many of those with 25-plus years in the workforce are very successful in finding new careers. In a recent AIER survey of 2,000 people (“New Careers for Older Workers,” April 2015), 82 percent of people 47 and older who tried to transition to new careers in the last two years were successful. In some cases, workers remained at the same company but in a new role. For others, they changed where they worked, their occupation or their field. Nearly 70 percent of successful changers saw their pay either stay the same (18 percent) or increase (50 percent), while 31 percent took a pay cut.

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