Supreme Court Justice Ruth Ginsberg passed away in September, leaving the current administration the opportunity to fill her seat with another jurist supposedly more in line with their ideology. I am not trying to get political, especially with the election just hours away, but what was Ruth’s retirement plan? While we may never fully know, she had the opportunity to retire under a different president and senate all of the same political party. They could have picked her successor and her ideology and legacy would have been carried on. So why didn’t she?
If you recall, I wrote about the 70 plus year old flight attendant at Delta who got terminated. What the heck was she thinking? After all those years of demonstrating where the emergency exits were located on the aircraft, when the time came she couldn’t find one herself.
Ruth Ginsberg and the flight attendant all share something in common; they had no strategic retirement plan. Sadly, many other Americans also have no plan either. We are often asked what we do and when we tell people, the response we often hear goes something like this, “Oh I am never going to retire” or the one I am hearing more frequently, “I am going to work full time for a few more years, then do something on the side.” Neither is strategic and leaves too much to chance. What if you are downsized? What if your health prevents you from working? What if the current economic conditions are such no one is willing to hire someone part time or in a consulting role? Although I haven’t been to Wal-Mart in a very long time, it is my understanding they have all but eliminated the “greeter” position.
If you have a strategic plan, you could retire on your terms and on the date that you choose. It could also mean that you could help shape who your successor might be and whether or not your legacy will continue. Ruth either didn’t care about her legacy or somehow mistakenly thought she would live forever. The bottom line is she didn’t have a strategic plan for her retirement and her legacy ended with her death.
If want control of your destiny and you desire a strategic retirement plan, give us a call.
Mike Mickels is President of CochranMickels Retirement Specialists and an avid sporting clay competitor. CochranMickels Retirement Specialists provides personalized planning and investment services to individuals approaching and in retirement. They also provide retirement and benefits training to Federal employees. Securities offered through Registered Representatives of Cambridge Investment Research, Inc., a broker-dealer, member FINRA/SIPC. Advisory services offered through Cambridge Investment Research Advisors, Inc, a Registered Investment Advisor. CochranMickels and Cambridge are not affiliated.