FBINAA Sept/Oct Magazine.2018

match given your needs and goals. In order to prepare for this dis- cussion, it is critical to take time now to reflect on how you want to spend your time, what you are willing to do (and not do), and what goals you want to achieve. Determine what kinds of experi- ences you desire, what brings you fulfillment, and what you want to avoid. Become educated on your finances so you know how much income and what benefits you will need and for how long. The questions below are offered as a potential road map to this type of preparation. How do I want to spend my time? You will have significantly more control over how you spend your time in the future. Considering your last decades have been dictated by set shifts and overtime demands beyond your control, this might feel like a new concept. It is important to understand how you want your time to look in the future. Reflect on how you spent your time over the past decades: consider your time overall, time on the job, and time away from work. Look for themes, such as if you devoted a lot of time to coaching and developing your staff or if you sought out assignments that required you to travel. Identify what you would like to continue, stop altogether, or try. Next, envision your next 30+ years. Think about how much of that time you want to be working, traveling, practicing your hobbies, learning a new skill, being with family and friends, and/or volun- teering. Of your working time, consider what control you want over your schedule and what flexibility you will need. What kinds of experiences do I want? Your next chapter is a great time to seek out new experiences and/or establish yourself in a different way professionally. Now is the time to think about the kinds of experiences you want to have. Perhaps you have spent your career in federal law enforcement and want to experience public service at the local level: seek out jobs where you can apply your skills in your community. Perhaps you have always enjoyed sharing your knowledge with younger officers: consider teaching as a way to continue this experience. Assessing what you have most enjoyed about your previous roles is a great way to navigate future opportunities. What are my goals? Just because your primary career is coming to a close does not mean you cannot make goals. In fact, just the opposite! Think about professional goals. Perhaps you want to start your own consulting business. The time is now to learn what you will need to have in place, start your business plan, and build your network. Or, you want to publish articles and speak at conferences on law enforcement topics of interest to you. You can start preparing for and doing this now so you can simply continue this in the future and devote more time to it. Think about your personal goals too. Perhaps you want to serve on a local community board or learn a new skill. Considering what major goals you have for your next phase will help you understand what investments (time, money) you will need to achieve them. How much money and what benefits will I need? Avoid shying away from this topic because it is critical to helping you choose what industry, where, and what you will do for work. Use your learnings and responses to the questions on time, experiences, and goals to inform this question. It is also important you thoroughly understand what your household’s fi- nances and benefits will be in retirement and your options. Now is the time to educate yourself (and your spouse/partner). Seek out professional advisement so you are informed and can confidently continued on page 22

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T ime and again I’ve interviewed experienced, accomplished law enforcement executives like yourself, wanted to hire you, but ultimately passed because despite your experience and skills, you couldn’t convey what you were looking for or what you wanted in your future thus it was difficult to assess whether you would be a good match for our company. It is a privilege and an honor to work with professionals like you so I’m sharing ques- tions here that will hopefully help guide your transition and pre- pare you for your next interview. If you read nothing further, know this: your next interviewer will expect you to know what you want in your second career in order to assess your fit for their needs. Yes, your experience and skills are important, but at these senior levels, employers are making a significant investment in you personally so you need to be able to help them assess whether you are an appropriate


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