Life Two Podcast

We’re in the midst of what many call a retirement crisis, with too many saving too little, too late. How do we turn this challenge into an opportunity to create financial security and personal fulfillment for millions of people? Co-hosted by retirement experts Don Ezra and Common Wealth, LIFE TWO offers in-depth, insightful conversations with the world’s best thinkers on the trends and ideas that are driving change in the retirement security field. The 10-part pilot series also features lessons from Don’s newly released book on how to plan and think about life after full-time work, helping to make this daunting topic more approachable and empowering for everyone.

Don Ezra

Don Ezra

is a former co-chair of Russell Investments global consulting and the creator of the retirement website donezra.com. His latest book is Life Two: How to get to and enjoy what used to be called retirement.

Alex Mazer

Alex Mazer

is a Founding Partner at Common Wealth, a mission-driven business focused on expanding access to retirement security. Common Wealth partners with associations, unions, and other groups to build and manage large-scale, collective retirement plans.

a list of episodes
  • Episode 1

    What does it mean to retire in the 21st century? Pensions and a full-stop retirement are becoming things of the past, and global retirement systems are struggling to keep up with the changing trends. In this special double-interview episode, we speak to Chris Battaglia (VP/Group Publisher, Pensions & Investments) and Jeremy Cooper (Chairman, Retirement Income, Challenger Limited) about what needs to be fixed and which countries are doing retirement right. Even as individuals are increasingly left to manage their own financial future, later in the show we explain why retirement, or what we call Life Two, is potentially the peak time of life: the most enjoyable and the most rewarding.

    Show Index

    00:00 | Opening
    01:50 | Intro to Chris Battaglia: his background
    04:50 | Global retirement challenges: longevity, what is retirement, investments, coverage
    09:40 | Crisis? Successes and desirable improvements
    20:10 | Why education hasn’t been successful
    26:20 | Technology is helping to fill the gap
    32:50 | The retirement transition, at the personal level
    40:50 | Intro to Jeremy Cooper: the Cooper Review
    47:40 | A tumultuous time in Australia
    52:30 | “My super” as a simple (if imperfect) default
    1:02:00 | Four criteria for evaluating change
    1:08:00 | People continue to save in retirement
    1:21:40 | Defaults for decumulation are manifestly more difficult
    1:31:10 | Thoughts on personal retirement
    1:35:40 | Don’s personal touch: Reframe retirement as Life Two, truly the best time of life
    1:45:40 | End

  • Episode 2

    Retirement, or what we call Life Two, is one of life’s biggest expenses, and with people working and living longer, traditional retirement planning is becoming more costly and complicated. Jonathan Clements (former personal finance columnist for The Wall Street Journal) of HumbleDollar draws on his experience and observations to tell us what goes into a good retirement plan, and later in the show, we break down an individual’s five financial stages and determine where you are in your retirement planning.

    Show Index

    00:00 | Opening
    01:30 | Intro to Jonathan Clements: his background
    04:30 | The key to financial success is great savings habits
    09:40 | Our whiny current self versus the needs of our future self
    11:50 | Put retirement first
    16:10 | The human side of money
    23:40 | Investment and financial strategy in the next stage
    26:10 | Visualize retirement, identify what matters to you
    34:40 | Financial risks in retirement: don’t over-complicate things
    43:00 | Paternalism helps retirement readiness
    46:30 | Where the financial services industry can add value
    52:10 | Personal feelings today
    54:50 | Jonathan’s website and further reading
    58:40 | Don’s personal touch: Three action steps for you to take, what to avoid, and mindsets to adopt
    1:11:12 End

  • Episode 3

    Just the thought of retirement planning can be daunting for many, so getting started is often the hardest step. Individuals not only have to overcome financial issues, but also psychological barriers. David John (Senior Strategic Policy Advisor, AARP Public Policy Institute) describes the challenges people face and the approaches for a successful retirement. Later in the show, we take you through the first stage of retirement planning, identifying the minimum, successful and exceptional standards.

    Show Index

    00:00 | Opening
    01:30 | Intro to David John: his background
    04:00 | What hinders people from starting?
    08:40 | Automatic and behavioral finance solutions
    13:30 | Specific examples: Oregon and California
    18:20 | Saving for emergencies
    22:20 | People on lower and moderate incomes
    29:00 | Personal stories!
    32:50 | Motivation to take action
    39:40 | Learn from other countries
    43:30 | You don’t need numerous savings accounts for different purposes
    47:40 | Trust (but verify)
    53:10 | Where to find David’s work
    56:10 | Don’s personal touch: the minimum standard, success and the gold standard in the early years
    1:05:50 | End