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Coasting until retirement?
Old 05-24-2021, 01:04 PM   #1
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Coasting until retirement?

I'm 52. Targetting next year sometime. I have made my career in IT sales for last 25 years. It has been pretty stressful, only as good as your last quarter. Quota increases that drive you to a new job every 3 or 4 years on average. I have exceeded quota for 19 years straight.

My question for those who made the goal line: did you coast your last year or two? I am just exhausted. I ran out of f**ks to give about chasing incremental dollars when the government takes 52% (waving at my California friends). I would pull the plug now, but I have some equity compensation vesting between now and next April that is non insignificant. I have seen slacker individual contributors spend a year at my company selling zero and being able to stay for a year before the system forces them out. (My company slow to fire except for egregious behavior). I dont see myself selling zero, but I don't see myself grinding as hard as I have done.

Any coasters here?
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Old 05-24-2021, 01:36 PM   #2
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Heck, I am 3+ years out and I am already starting to close the tray table and bring the seat to the fully upright position. MC kinda pissed me off last year when they would not back a promotion for me, so then and there I decided I would do the parts of the job I enjoy (and those parts that actually benefit growth/revenue) and pencil whip the numbers to keep everyone at ease, but I would not kill myself.

I have seen guys do almost nothing for 2+ years heading into retirement at my MC.
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Old 05-24-2021, 01:40 PM   #3
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Most certainly. Thankfully, my last gig in the Air Force allowed for a lot of down time.

There is even an acronym for this time frame in the military, it's called being "ROAD" or "retired on active duty."
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Old 05-24-2021, 02:23 PM   #4
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OP - have you run FireCalc or similar tools with, and without, the non-vested equity compensation? If both scenarios are successful, I suggest you pull the plug now. Coasting before leaving could sour your exit both for you and for the team/manager that you leave behind. If they notice your performance dipping, you may get called out on it leading to some unpleasant conversations... if you can, leave now while you're still a rock star
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Old 05-24-2021, 02:30 PM   #5
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Use vacation, work 35-40 hours. During those hours do your almost best.

Say no more. Delegate more. I'm not wired to coast/do poorly/not care/slack.

But, you can pull back in safer ways. I wouldn't want to mess with being let go after 20 years.
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Old 05-24-2021, 03:06 PM   #6
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Most certainly. Thankfully, my last gig in the Air Force allowed for a lot of down time.

There is even an acronym for this time frame in the military, it's called being "ROAD" or "retired on active duty."
At MC we called RIP, Retired In Place.

To OP, there is a lot of grey area between being a total slacker and a GungHo SOB.

And even if you back off a little, someone will notice.

In my case about 6 months before I announced, I just started not to worry about the little sh!t, that normally works itself out. I delegated more than I had in the past. Maybe they would make some mistakes, but heck, I would not be there to clean them up .

When I announced to my project teams that I would be retiring, one younger lady, a process engineering manager that I highly respected and who I had worked closely with and travelled with over the previous 2 years, basically said "well we could tell that 6 months ago". FWIW that was said with a laugh and taken with one as well.
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Old 05-24-2021, 03:38 PM   #7
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I coasted for eight weeks. The time between when I was given a heads up about a handshake and the time it happened.

One of the managers who reported to me was able to guess within the first week. He asked me to come clean in week 2.
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Old 05-24-2021, 03:48 PM   #8
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I 'semi-retired' going down to 60% time at 46 and was essentially coasting until I fully retired at 55. You guys would be making me feel guilty, but fortunately my guilt gland retired long before the rest of me did.
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Old 05-24-2021, 04:31 PM   #9
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You guys would be making me feel guilty, but fortunately my guilt gland retired long before the rest of me did.

LOL, perfect.

As far as Firecalc and planning, yes I have run the scenario many different ways. At this point it is wants versus needs in adding more to the pot. Also, having been frugal for so long, it seems really wasteful to leave a significant amount of money on the table between now and april.

I'll still far exceed my goals for the year, but I am not going to kill myself doing it. I think I have a little COVID burnout too. I'm an extroverted sales dude that has worked in a home office exclusively for 14 months. Didnt wear long pants for 10 of those months.
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Old 05-24-2021, 04:32 PM   #10
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Saw a thread on Reddit about this. People that had jobs that didn't have much work to do so they had to figure out how to look like they were working, including taking long lunches so you leave later at night from the office. No one knows you arent working hard
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Old 05-24-2021, 04:36 PM   #11
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Saw a thread on Reddit about this. People that had jobs that didn't have much work to do so they had to figure out how to look like they were working, including taking long lunches so you leave later at night from the office. No one knows you arent working hard
Office Space comes to mind....
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Old 05-24-2021, 05:14 PM   #12
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Hi Sean,
I did much the same thing you are contemplating when I retired from SAP in March 2001 at the age of 52 but for different reasons. I was a software pre-sales engineer, salary plus commission, and had been in the software industry since 1970, yes back when everything was mainframe computers. I was a sales guy from 1978 to 1994 for more software companies than I can remember. I stopped caring about work in early 1999 about 2 years before actual retirement and stayed until 3/2001 so I could collect my final 2 annual $50,000 bonus payments. I still worked sometimes and did a lot of mentorship. I took off between 2/2000 and 8/2000 when my wife got sick and died, then went part time from 8/2000 to 3/2001. I remember the HR people telling me I could not retire since I was younger than 55 so officially I voluntarily resigned.
Stopping caring about work and still getting paid is very doable if you want to try. Your attitude change may surprise you, your co-workers and your bosses as you may become more of a team player and less competitive.
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Old 05-24-2021, 05:27 PM   #13
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Not much changed for me near the end, as I coasted my whole career Well, kind of. I was an engineer and pretty much only worked 40 hours/week my entire career except for a few exceptions. Early on I decided my outside life was worth more than busting ass just to make money, so I prioritized that. Now I did perform well in all my jobs and was well liked and respected, but my identity was never in my work, so when it came time to retire it was an easy transition.
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Old 05-24-2021, 06:28 PM   #14
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Had my foot hard on the accelerator for the last couple of years before retirement. During the last stage of my career I moved across the State for one last promotion to head up a Division of my organization. Drove my team hard for several years and my stress level was off the chart … until … that day in March 2020 where I met with the Chief Executive and negotiated a May 1, 2020 retirement date.

For the last six week I was a total slacker. Didn’t spend much time in the office. The only real “work” during that time was to meet individually with each project manager offsite for a very leisurely lunch and a couple beers. Enjoyed those conversations.

Beyond that did the bare bones minimum to keep my teams employed and paid.
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Old 05-24-2021, 07:56 PM   #15
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I did not really "coast", but I did have a "glide path" for my last 2 years of work . Details of how it progressed are here if you are interested: https://www.early-retirement.org/for...ans-81406.html

From a work standpoint, my major action was more mentoring of people on projects and teams, giving them more responsibilities, and letting them get all the credit and rewards since I no longer needed that.
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Old 05-24-2021, 08:28 PM   #16
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Hi Sean,
I did much the same thing you are contemplating when I retired from SAP in March 2001 at the age of 52 but for different reasons. I was a software pre-sales engineer, salary plus commission, and had been in the software industry since 1970, yes back when everything was mainframe computers. I was a sales guy from 1978 to 1994 for more software companies than I can remember. I stopped caring about work in early 1999 about 2 years before actual retirement and stayed until 3/2001 so I could collect my final 2 annual $50,000 bonus payments. I still worked sometimes and did a lot of mentorship. I took off between 2/2000 and 8/2000 when my wife got sick and died, then went part time from 8/2000 to 3/2001. I remember the HR people telling me I could not retire since I was younger than 55 so officially I voluntarily resigned.
Stopping caring about work and still getting paid is very doable if you want to try. Your attitude change may surprise you, your co-workers and your bosses as you may become more of a team player and less competitive.
Thank you for sharing your story, Tom. Means a lot.

Of my 6 person team, I usually carry about 40% of the number, even though we are evenly quota'd. We have three brand new hires this year and I have been coaching and mentoring them. I find myself not willing to fight territory battles as much.

We are going to build a house in about a year and that will consume most of my attention and I'm looking forward to the process. I'll just make sure I'm at 125+% attainment and get my TPS cover sheets done on time.
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Old 05-24-2021, 09:25 PM   #17
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Thank you for sharing your story, Tom. Means a lot.

Of my 6 person team, I usually carry about 40% of the number, even though we are evenly quota'd. We have three brand new hires this year and I have been coaching and mentoring them. I find myself not willing to fight territory battles as much.

We are going to build a house in about a year and that will consume most of my attention and I'm looking forward to the process. I'll just make sure I'm at 125+% attainment and get my TPS cover sheets done on time.
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Old 05-24-2021, 09:28 PM   #18
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Oh yeah, I coasted big time. Never looked for work and avoided all I could.

If you don't like it, fire me.
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Old 05-24-2021, 09:42 PM   #19
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Just the opposite for me. I worked and traveled more my last years than ever before. I made it known that I was going to take the next riff offer and in fact spent a lot of my time finding spots for my team - AA, local engs., and mgrs. around the region. It happened, I took it, and was very glad to leave on a positive note.
However, a year later I found out that some of my best laid plans did not last. Some were transferred and some we declared excess. Kind of pissed me off but not really unexpected.
Where I worked we had a reorg about every 5 years and it was mostly about survival - the tech bust of 2000 had a brutal effect on the business. The last few years were not fun.
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Old 05-25-2021, 04:22 AM   #20
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You can take your foot off the gas.
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