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Flexible and longer working in the news

by on January 9, 2015

Two articles caught my eye this morning.  First in the Telegraph Rowan Williams, the former Archbishop of Canterbury uses some interesting language in discussing the issues of older workers.  Although retiring from his main job two years ago, Rowan Williams has many other roles but talks about ‘slimming down’ his work commitments as he gets older.  This notion of slimming to me suggest a reduction in ‘size’ rather than ‘scope’ of work.  Later the article, he is quoted as saying “I’d like to see many more people supported instead to opt for a new rhythm of work when they reach a certain age, that is less hectic, less driven, but where they can still be and feel valued. At the moment there is too much of the attitude that you work-until-you-drop, or retire and die. That’s not a real choice.”

Again the use of the term ‘rhythm’ is interesting here as while he uses the term ‘less’ twice later in the same quote, there is more focus on creating a different way of working rather than opting for work that is less valued.

Elsewhere OnRec report the increase in flexible working policies by employers who see this as a potential solution to the issues of working longer. However the report’s focus on health related issues and worker absence is slightly worrying as it suggests this is a problem associated with older workers rather than seeing health as a life-long issue that should be a concern for both young and old.

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