Boomers in business

A growing number of workers aged 50 and older are starting businesses of their own.  The fastest rate of entrepreneurial growth in the economy isn’t found among millennials, but baby boomers.

Financial expert Leonard Raskin, president and CEO of Raskin Global, says they do so for a number of reasons, such as wanting to stay busy or not having enough saved for retirement.  “They’re looking to do something that’s their passion,” he says.  “They’re looking to do something other than the job that they were in and didn’t like for all those years.”

A lot of these new business owners buy into franchise opportunities.  That route has its advantages and potential disadvantages, Raskin says.  “The biggest thing to be careful with in a franchise situation, though, is some of them cost a lot of money,” he advises.  “And if you don’t know that business and you just think, ‘Oh, I can do this,’ it could be very detrimental to your wealth in the long run.”  He recommends FranNet as a resource for those thinking about a franchise.

Raskin points out that people who have been in the workplace for decades bring their experience and good work habits with them.  “If you ran a big Fortune 500 or something of that nature and now you’re looking to follow your passion,” he says, “you’re saying hey, I’ve got all these years of business experience, I might as well put it to work in a company that’s mine.”

A couple of other cautions Raskin wants potentially self-employed boomers to think about.  “If you’re going to get into this business, make sure it’s more than just a hobby,” he advises.  “Make sure you really do have a good business plan, you understand what you’re going to do.  And I would also say, be careful of getting into business with partners.”  Choosing the wrong partner, he says, can lead to a costly “business divorce” not far down the road.

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