To read this content please select one of the options below:

Antecedents of older workers' motives for continuing to work

Andrew Templer (Odette School of Business, University of Windsor, Windsor, Canada)
Marjorie Armstrong‐Stassen (Odette School of Business, University of Windsor, Windsor, Canada)
Julian Cattaneo (Odette School of Business, University of Windsor, Windsor, Canada)

Career Development International

ISSN: 1362-0436

Article publication date: 21 September 2010




The purpose of this paper is to identify demographic and work‐related antecedents of the motives that influence the decision of older workers to remain in the workforce.


A cross‐sectional study was conducted with three groups of respondents aged 50‐70 years: those in their career job (n=395); those employed in a bridge job (n=195); and those who were self‐employed (n=174).


In general, the demographic variables (age, gender, marital status) predicted the financial motive for continuing to work whereas the work‐related variables (work centrality, career satisfaction, and perceived contribution/perceived reward of owning one's own business) predicted the work fulfillment and generativity motives. However, the pattern of relationships differed across the three groups of older workers.

Research limitations/implications

The three groups could not be directly compared because of differences in some of the measures. Only one variable, work centrality, was a significant predictor across all three groups, suggesting that instead of seeking to identify universal antecedents, the focus of future research should be on identifying antecedents specific to different groups of older workers.

Practical implications

To promote the retention of older workers, policies, practices and programs should be customized to the different needs of career, bridge and self‐employed individuals.


Little research exists on the antecedents of older workers' motives for continuing to work. Prior research has either not differentiated among older workers or focused solely on one specific group of older workers.



Templer, A., Armstrong‐Stassen, M. and Cattaneo, J. (2010), "Antecedents of older workers' motives for continuing to work", Career Development International, Vol. 15 No. 5, pp. 479-500.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2010, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Related articles