waste

We're wasting Experience - One Mature Age Aussie at a time


by Hunter Leonard

A few of my friends and colleagues have asked me the reason why I decided to start a new social enterprise for mature age workers – Silver & Wise. In this short article, I’ll explain the reasons behind it, and our goals for the next few years.

First of all, as my headline suggests, there is a serious issue related to mature age workers in Australia. We are sending them to the scrap heap far too early. And along with that, losing the opportunity to take advantage of hundreds of thousands of years of experience in hundreds of industries.

A few of my friends and colleagues have asked me the reason why I decided to start a new social enterprise for mature age workers – Silver & Wise. In this short article, I’ll explain the reasons behind it, and our goals for the next few years.

First of all, as my headline suggests, there is a serious issue related to mature age workers in Australia. We are sending them to the scrap heap far too early. And along with that, losing the opportunity to take advantage of hundreds of thousands of years of experience in hundreds of industries.

The facts speak for themselves. Mature age Aussies are being made redundant faster than at any time in history. They are then unemployed for longer – with the statistics placing them worse off than individuals from non-English speaking backgrounds or limited literacy. Fully 1/3rd of people over 50 who experience age discrimination in their subsequent job search give up entirely, and last year the number of people over 50 out of work and looking for employment grew by 12% - far faster than the growth of unemployment overall.

Australia is rated way worse than countries like Japan and Canada in the way we take care of our mature workers, and in the end this will harm us all, because what every developed economy needs now is productive, tax paying workers. 

The huge social issue all of us face is the inability to support our social agenda because the government simply will not collect enough tax to fund health, superannuation, retirement benefits and other key programs.

The Human Rights commission suggests that according to their models, if only 5% of those over 50 looking for work were found gainful employment, we would see a $46 billion benefit to the economy.

Personally, when I started researching this topic, I had an immediate connection to the issue in that I happen to be over 50, and I run a successful consulting business. I wouldn’t want to experience being discriminated against because of my age, as I believe I know a fair bit about my professional discipline and have a lot of experience delivering successful strategic marketing programs.

That is the background as to why we are starting Silver & Wise.

Now here are our targets:

  1. To create a profitable social enterprise that changes the lives of individuals over 50; both socially, emotionally, spiritually and economically by enabling them to contribute productively as they actively age.
  2. To create a network of at least 25 senior marketing advisors consulting to SME businesses by 2021
  3. To enable at least 750 mature age entrepreneurs to start their own SME business by 2021.
  4. To provide core skills retraining to at least 1425 mature age Australians who are willing to work, but need new skills to engage in a new career.
  5. By helping over 2000 Mature Age Aussies work or run businesses until they decide to retire, we will put them back in control and make a $20 billion dollar impact on the economy.

I have to say I am incredibly excited by making a difference to this social issue, and the feedback so far from people wanting to do our courses, license our marketing models, invest in the business, and help us expand across Australia has been phenomenal.

And we haven’t even started yet!

So there you go. If you want to help make a difference in this area, or just want to share your own experiences with this social issue, or get involved please feel free to contact me to discuss.

Heres to making Silver & Wise the go to destination for the mature age Aussie who wants to work or run businesses. And let’s change the way we view and support our experienced individuals in Australia.

Long Live Experience.

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