From Lame Duck to Lucky Duck.

July 23, 2022

From Lame Duck to Lucky Duck.

May 29, 2023

If you’re an air traffic controller in your early 50s, you’re a lame duck, as this profession has a mandatory retirement age of 56. If you’re a 65-year-old pilot, you’re not flying anymore—truly a lame duck! And if President Joe Biden chooses not to run again (possibly due to how people perceive his age), he will also be considered a lame duck, or in this case, a leader with less influence.

Of course, there are lots of lame ducks in all kinds of professions—people who are forced to retire or are being pushed out simply because of their age.

But what if we were to rethink the whole lame duck premise? What if we began to think about these people with institutional wisdom as ripe sages instead of lame ducks? What a wonderful “swan song” (excuse another bird reference) to see the last few years of one’s career dedicated to cultivating and transferring enduring organizational wisdom.

Remember, you may no longer be youthful, but you can still feel useful. And once you believe this in your heart (and act on it), you can then make your transition to a more spacious life filled with learning, community, and purpose. We see these people all the time at MEA. And we call them Lucky Ducks.

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