Baby Boomer Entrepreneurs and Work Life Balance

A distinct trend is that of Baby Boomers choosing to continue working into their “retirement.” They want active, full lives. Complete retirement from work does not fit into that definition.

Some choose the path of getting a part-time or full-time job. Increasingly, however, we see Baby Boomer entrepreneurs — people starting or purchasing a business or a franchise for the first time later in life.

Korky Vann writes about this trend in Seniors Seek New Balance Of Work, Leisure, an article in the Hartford Courant. She was kind enough to consult me about the article, and one of the interesting aspects of her article is that she captures the growth industries that are popping up to help Boomers make decisions about their work later in life. She notes:

But figuring out what to do with the rest of your life can be challenging. To help make the best choices, soon-to-be retirees are turning to retirement coaches, retirement self-help groups and even retirement retreats for inspiration. These businesses are among the newest in the so-called “silver industries,” a term coined by Harry Moody, director of academic affairs for AARP, to describe new companies responding to America’s aging population.

Some answers might be as close as your library or bookstore. A new crop of books covering second careers, volunteerism, financial security, health and wellness, hobbies, downsizing and aging in style provides important information for middle-aged transitions.

In other words, not only is there a trend toward Baby Boomers undertaking new opportunities as entrepreneurs, but that in turn is giving rise to new opportunities for enterprising entrepreneurs to serve this huge demographic.


Anita Campbell Anita Campbell is the Founder, CEO and Publisher of Small Business Trends and has been following trends in small businesses since 2003. She is the owner of BizSugar, a social media site for small businesses.

10 Reactions
  1. Greg Balanko-Dickson

    Great article and link Anita. This is a trend I began to watch when researching my first book Tips and Traps When Buying a Business.

    These are exciting times to be in business and represent a great opportunity for baby boomer

  2. Anita,
    Great article, and so true.
    More and more inquiries are coming in to my franchise consulting firm from the about to retire baby boomers.
    They tell me that they want a business that gives them the freedom and flexibility to enjoy their retirement, and build equity and create some additional cash flow.
    Some even talk about passing the business down as a legacy to their children and grandchildren.
    These are interesting times!

  3. “They” have been telling retirees for years to strive for financial security. When you get it much of the risk in your life goes away. Risk is what made your life challenging. Somehow you need to put some risk back in your life. Risk is the spice of life. What that risk is depends on the individual. Of course some people like bland.

  4. The worst thing about retired life is that you sit all day in your house and spend lazy time. You get unnecessary tension. It is better to engage into something and why not business!!!
    I think business is great.

  5. Yes, sitting on the couch is a bad idea if the folks at are right. One of us dies every 54 seconds … maybe I should start a funeral home!!!

  6. Anita,

    Good article. How we all need purpose in our lives, and we need to find that. It can be a scary time of life – everything is changing. But we can see it as an exciting time – time to go on to a new challenge and goal.

    I think starting a business (either from home or outside the home) can be a great remedy to this situation. A home business normally requires much less money to start, and allows more flexibility in your work hours.

    Either way, keep learning and taking on new challenges. It will keep you young!

  7. Anita, thank you for this excellent article on Baby Boomer Entrepreneurs. I have been delighted to see this increase in exposure to the opportunities for Baby Boomer Entrepreneurs since the SBA activated their new site for people over 50 seeking to start businesses. I think the point that you make about balancing life is the key ingredient to making this an attractive option for Baby Boomers. I will be sharing your post with others in a directory I am developing on this topic.

    Shallie Bey