I'm eligible for retirement but may not take it. Do I have any obligation to discuss my plans with my supervisor?
According to Pew Research and the Social Security Administration, about 10,000 men and women a day hit the usual retirement age of 65. So the problem you face is no doubt one that's cropping up all across the contemporary work landscape.
Unless your company has a specific policy requiring notification of your intentions upon reaching retirement age, you are not obligated to discuss the matter until it suits you. But whenever you leave, your company will still need to find a suitable replacement, and it could take a significant amount of time to do so.
If and when you decide to retire, it would generate considerable goodwill to start succession planning by first broaching the topic with your boss and setting a general time frame for your eventual departure. Offer to start compiling a list of your job duties and responsibilities that can be used as a training and reference document by your successor. Once you've taken these steps, you can also offer to help break in your replacement, assuming the company brings him or her on before you actually leave.
While you're making a plan for work, be sure you're creating one for home as well. Prepare your finances, of course, but also ready a strategy to keep physically and mentally active and involved in your interests. This way, you'll have something to retire to and not just a place you'll retire from. E
, organizational psychologist, is the president of management-consulting company Lumpkin & Associates in Fairhope, AL. Need answers? Email your career-related questions to firstname.lastname@example.org