An early retirement package: it’s what most long-term employees strive for in the final years of their careers. The opportunity to retire early from the workplace with a generous financial package is a common goal. It is a dream come true for many who want to be financially comfortable while having the time to pursue their passions. Early retirement looks different for everyone. Retirement could mean the chance to move abroad to a place where the sun always shines, the opportunity to spend more time with family, the chance to travel, or the time necessary to invest in personal passions. Whatever retirement looks like for you, a strong financial package will give you the flexibility to pursue your dreams.
The first step to achieving an early retirement package from your current job is realizing that with the appropriate negotiation skills, you hold the power. Negotiation tactics are key to getting that pension sooner rather than later. It’s never too early to invest in a negotiation skills course to prepare you for the conversation which could bring your retirement dreams closer.
In the meantime, here are several tactics and skills which are essential to the retirement negotiation process, all of which you will need to consider when putting together your negotiation strategy.
1. You’re Not Handing in Your Notice
Remember, negotiating an early retirement package shouldn’t necessarily be a black-and-white scenario. It’s important to approach your boss with the right attitude, preparation, training, and not miscommunicate your intentions.
Present yourself as being open-minded and willing to negotiate. Make it clear that your intention is not to hand in your notice if all your terms are not met. First and foremost, you want to open up a dialogue with your company. Let your manager know that early retirement is on your mind and see what possibilities arise from the conversation.
2. Get Ready for the Question, “Why Do You Want to Retire Early?”
If you already have a positive relationship with your boss, you should be genuine, yet professional and firm, when you present your reasons for wanting to retire early. Perhaps you are suffering from a health condition and want to focus on healing and enjoying your remaining time as fully as possible. Maybe unexpected life circumstances have prompted your retirement request because you are suddenly in need of the full use of your time.
Come with solid reasons in mind. If you present your case as if retirement is something you just thought of on a whim, you won’t be convincing. That doesn’t mean you need to wait for difficulties to arise in your life before negotiating an early retirement package – you can still argue your case on the grounds of intimately knowing your own needs and readiness for more freedom to pursue other interests outside of your professional life.
3. Take Generational Factors into Account
Be aware of your generation’s workplace trends and use this awareness to help make your case for early retirement. This macro information is crucial to the negotiation process. For example, reports show that millennials start their careers later in life than their grandparents and parents. If you are part of the latter group, you can make a strong case for having already invested many productive years in the workforce. Know your numbers, including how long you have been at the company and how long you have been in the workforce. This information will support you in making the case for an early retirement following many years of committed service.
4. Prepare Your Portfolio
Go into your retirement negotiation with a clear presentation of all the valuable work you have done to date. Help your employer understand the ways you contributed to growth during your time at the company. When you show all that you were able to accomplish in your best years, you will be able to make a better case for early retirement. In many cases, companies value employee loyalty and have regulations in place which recognize and reward consistent hard work. If the business sees how hard you have worked and how much value you have created, your employer may be willing to let you end your career early, so you go out with a winning record.
5. Have a Clear Value in Mind
A major part of negotiating early retirement includes talking about hard numbers. Your top priority should be achieving clarity on what benefits your retirement package will include, as well as how soon those benefits go into action.
Make sure you know exactly what you are entitled to, and be ready to communicate this objectively and with confidence to your boss. You will need to take several factors into account when calculating how much money you will need to have saved or coming in through pension payments. You will need to know where you plan to live, your healthcare cost, and the price tag for your lifestyle. Retirement is more than a number – it’s an entire package. Make sure you approach any early retirement negotiation with a clear expectation of what you’ll need to be able to live a comfortable and healthy life throughout your retirement.