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How to ask for a flexible retirement

If you're not ready to fully retire and change your lifestyle completely just yet, you might be able to create your own arrangement with a so-called flexible retirement. We take a look at what this means for older workers looking for alternatives to giving up employment entirely.

Some companies do offer employees in their 50s and 60s formal programs to ratchet down workloads and hours, but if yours doesn't, all is not lost. You may be able to negotiate such an arrangement on your own.

Flexible retirement steps

How so? Here are some preparatory steps you can take:

  1. Be up front with your boss.
  2. Explain how flexible retirement will benefit both you and the firm.
  3. Emphasize your expertise and experience ... and how you'll continue to contribute whether working from home or the office.
  4. Identify younger colleagues you can train to take on some of your former responsibilities.
  5. Arrange to split your work hours between home and the office, or simply cut back on your overall hours.
  6. Stay mentally, physically and financially fit. Changing your focus and your routine after many years of working full-time can be a big adjustment.
  7. Negotiate to keep your health and retirement benefits as long as possible.
  8. Make sure you've stashed away enough savings so you can afford a cut in pay.

Take a test run now so that when you eventually do decide to leave the workforce entirely, you will be able to retire well.