Book Review: The 100-Year Life
Gratton, Lynda and Andrew Scott. The 100-Year Life: Living and Working in an Age of Longevity. Bloomsbury Information, 2016.
Fuqua students in their 20’s have a 50% chance of celebrating their 100th birthday. Their grandparents in their 60’s have a 50-50 chance of living another quarter century. Millions of people are looking forward to a long life and those who exercise regularly, do not smoke and control their weight are expected to remain healthy and fit deep into old age.
A long and healthy life has long been regarded as one of the greatest gifts, yet foresight and planning are needed to guarantee that the decades late in life will be happy. Structuring and using those extra years effectively is the subject new book, The 100-Year Life, by two professors at the London Business School, Lynda Gratton and Andrew Scott.
The book begins with the obvious question: How will this gift of time be financed? Obvious answer: The increase in life expectancy will be funded by working longer or saving more. “Making the most of the gift of a long life requires everyone to face up to the truth of working into your 70s or even 80s. Simple as that.” To some that may sound depressing, but the nature of work will change profoundly to include more innovation, decision making and social engagement.
Gratton and Scott explain that currently, there are three stages in adult life: Education – Career – Retirement. When working life extends to 6 or 7 decades, transitioning between careers will become normal. In some decades, workers will choose maximize finances while in others, they will focus on creating a work-life balance. Workers will routinely take breaks to become re-educated for new careers.
In every age, there are winners and losers. As the 100 year life becomes commonplace globally, there are ways to ensure a successful life. Remain flexible. Continue to learn. Take action. Defer gratification. Authors Gratton and Scott present the financial and social strategies that lead to a long life that is creative and fun. This book is recommended.
© Meg Trauner & Ford Library – Fuqua School of Business.
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