Lynda Gratton

The Corporate Implications of Longer Lives

‘The Corporate Implications of Longer Lives’, MIT Sloan Management Review by Lynda Gratton and Andrew J. Scott.

1st March 2017

People are living longer and working longer – but few organisations have come to grips with the opportunities and challenges that greater longevity brings.

There is growing awareness that increasing longevity will have major implications for how people manage their work lives and careers. Rising life expectancy means the level of savings required to provide a reasonable income for retirement at age 65 is becoming increasingly infeasible for most people. We predict that, given the average level of savings in advanced economies, many people currently in their mid-40s are likely to need to work into their early to mid-70s; many currently in their 20s (many of whom could live to be over 100) will be working into their late 70s, and even into their 80s.

While people know they will have to restructure their lives and careers, corporations are unprepared. Organisations and leaders have been somewhat inconsistent in their reaction to greater longevity.