Qualitative Aspects of Retirement Planning

All too often, ‘retirement planning’ is reduced to a number—crunching exercise—a series of quantitative projections and illustrations indicating how much money a client needs to save to achieve his or her desired income goal at retirement.

However, retirement planning, in the proper sense of the term, is much more than this. Clearly, the ‘numbers’ cannot be ignored however, the less tangible qualitative aspects of retirement are equally important considerations. After all, it is the qualitative factors that ultimately define the quality of your retirement.

When you suddenly have 24 hours of each day available to you, how will you spend your time in retirement? Many people—particularly, those who have climbed the corporate ladder with some degree of success—are defined by their careers (as much as they may not admit it). Are you prepared for life after your high profile career ends? Do you have an active social network in place and hobbies to keep you mentally challenged and engaged when you enter the next phase of your life?

As much as the RRC/CR Program provides in-depth coverage of quantitative retirement concepts, it goes beyond the numbers and also emphasizes the important qualitative questions that you should be asking your clients as part of the retirement planning process. Of note, soft skills are also covered—it is not a matter of simply asking your client a question; you have to ask it in a way that puts the client at ease and encourages them to provide you with the answers you need. Moreover, the qualitative learning objectives in the RRC/CR Program of study are supplemented by additional content and lifestyle planning topics through The Retirement Institute Web site.