Are You Really Ready To Hang Up Your Dancing Shoes?

What does it mean to be ready to hang up your shoes for soon-to-be retired individuals?

This question came to me after I reviewed the calls I had last week.  I had been given an assignment to fill an underwriter position, a rare task as most of my recruiting is opportunistic.  It was a very specific assignment in this case and one that I felt I was definitely challenged by.  Being an experienced recruiter, I resorted back to my old recruiting day tactics where I searched for a specific job order.  What I found was absolutely eye-opening!  Many retired (or so-called retired individuals) really wanted to get back in the saddle again.  I was referred to recently, and even post-retirees, who had hinted they would take another position in their career lives. 

The Pattern With Retired Individuals

I don’t know if this was because many of the respondents were recently let go during the great release, or if they were just tired of playing golf or sitting on the beach as retired individuals.  However, there was clearly a pattern of bankers wanting to return to work.  They essentially wanted to take the money and run to their next position.  I have referred to the graying of public finance bankers and bond counsel over the years and have actually moved professionals in their sixties to new firms. I have also had conversations with individuals in their late sixties and even early seventies who have no desire to move on, i.e. retire.  They love what they do. 

What Is It With Soon-To-Be Or Current Retired Individuals? Passion Vs. Paycheck

The same week that I saw the desire to return to work by those retired individuals or those who have been released for one reason or another, I had a young banker ask me the following puzzling questions:  

“Do the candidates I work with love their job, or are they just using public finance as a tool to pay the bills?”  

I have to admit that this question surprised me.  Why?  Because I can say overwhelmingly that the candidates I am fortunate enough to work with daily love public finance.  It gets into their blood! Suppose it is not in their blood, so to say, they are not the candidates that I can help.  Clients can see through the smoke screen if they are taking a position to get paid or taking on a new assignment to help the issuers and their clients. 

Display The Passion

The latter attitude must be demonstrated to move ahead in this hiring environment right now.  There are bankers who have been released but are still looking for new homes.  However, if public finance is not their true passion, then it will be extremely difficult to land that next position.  Like the retired individuals who are aching to get back behind the desk and go to one more city council meeting, you must feel the passion too and demonstrate it during your next interview.  Let us help you share your passion with our clients who are still eager to hire those professionals in the field of public finance –  whether banker, municipal advisor, bond counsel, institutional sales personnel, or trader/underwriter. 


You don’t need a resume to chat with us! If you would like to discuss your options, please reach out for a confidential conversation at 760-477-1284 or email at [email protected]. He can also be reached on LinkedIn. Harlan publishes a blog every Thursday here. Subscribe to our monthly newsletter here, which is a compilation of our weekly blogs, so you never miss one. We have also been mentioned in Forbes, click HERE to read for yourself.  

About Harlan Friedman, JD & Founding Member, H. Friedman Search LLC. Harlan is a thirty-year veteran Public Finance Banker turned recruiter who specializes in the placement of all levels Public Finance Bankers, Healthcare Bankers, Municipal Advisors, Compliance Officers, Issuers, and Bond Counsels.