How “The New Normal” May Impact your Retirement

Although we’re not past the health crisis yet, a picture of what the new normal might look like is becoming a bit more clear. In my last blog post, I wrote about The Coronavirus Crisis and The Real Estate Market, and what you need to know. Now let’s discuss the virus’ impact on other areas of society. 

From education to business and retail, changes prompted by necessity during the pandemic are now becoming methods of choice. In fact, the changes taking shape can be cultural. They can also be  economic, or even psychological. The emergence of this new normal is likely to have an impact on the way that many Americans prepare for and spend their retirement.

It’s no secret that every crisis throughout our history has led to permanent changes. It’s a big part of how a society progresses and evolves.

So, will the new normal include an even greater percentage of retail revenue being generated online rather than in stores? Almost certainly. It was already in the process of occurring before the pandemic hit, so it stands to reason that it’ll be a permanent part of the new normal. That’s why job openings for warehouse workers, delivery drivers, and telemarketers all rose during the pandemic even as millions of people were being laid off. These openings are expected to remain strong in this new corona-economy.

Did You Lose Your Job While Planning to Retire? 

A big concern of mine is the level of disparity that now exists. It seems like the middle class, perhaps even the lower-middle class, are suffering worse with job loss. If you are near retirement and working in the retail or hospitality industry, job loss is amplified, as these industries might be slow to come back to the level that they were before.

In 2008, things seemed a bit more transparent during the financial crisis. However, today we’re trying to get clarity in terms of what the new normal will look like. 

Across many industries, we’re seeing a tremendous number of Americans being furloughed. Moreover, if they don’t get furloughed, they could potentially be laid off. Corporate America is waiting to see how everything pans out – making it harder for those at risk of losing their jobs to plan for retirement.

Forced Into Retirement Before You Were Ready?

For those of you that are forced to retire or leave the private sector early, there are options.  You can leverage existing, marketable skillsets to help transition through this new corona-economy. Some of the most sought-after transferable skills in this economy are creativity, teamwork, communications, and critical thinking. 

Businesses are looking for people that are seasoned and experienced, with know-how to get through adversity – and can hit the ground running. They can train them on software. They can train them on protocol. If you think about it, bringing in people from different backgrounds and embracing your own cognitive diversity – the difference on how you process information and the experience you have – might be a great value-add. 

If you are faced with an untimely job loss, I recommend tapping into the hidden, unadvertised job market. Companies do not promote those jobs. Also, workers tend to focus their job search on industries that they are in and look to go to a competitor. I encourage someone that’s been in an industry that’s struggling to realize what their transferable skills are and leverage personal allies to tap into this market.

In general, most people don’t particularly like change, and that’s especially true as we get older. We become set in our ways. We prefer to keep doing things the way we’ve always done them because it’s comfortable. Change can be inconvenient. Change can be painful. Very often change can be scary. However, it’s also true that change is sometimes forced upon us. We don’t have a choice in the matter and as painful and scary as it might be, we must change or get left behind.

Unsure About Your Retirement Future? Talk To An Income Specialist Today!

You have a financial goal and you know what it’s going to take to achieve it. Then, out of nowhere, life throws you a financial curveball. No matter how much you prepare, setbacks will happen, but they don’t have to prevent you from achieving your retirement goals.

If you find yourself in a precarious position due to this new corona-economy, I strongly recommend speaking with an Income Specialist. By speaking with an Income Specialist, you will see just how prepared you are and learn what can be done to ensure your retirement is everything you want it to be.

Connect with an advisor in your area to find out if your retirement is on track.