MOLCA: Mission-oriented Late Career Alliance

We’re piloting MOLCA and we’d love for you to join the Beta

Are you in the last 20% of your career?

Innovate the ‘late career’ phase of your life for purpose and impact

Are you afraid that coming to the last part of your career means conventional slow down to retirement, when actually, you want to be more active in tackling societal challenges? Are you worried you’re not where you should be in terms of positive impact in the world, making a difference, or leaving a legacy? Do you feel alone in trying to figure out how to harness your potential in this phase of life?

If you’re nodding yes, then you may be the perfect candidate for the Mission-oriented Late Career Alliance, or MOLCA. (Note here, ‘late career’ is a description of your phase of life, it’s not about job hunting.)

MOLCA is a learning and innovation membership community where you join a team of peers from a similar stage of life with similar energy. You meet every few weeks using a professional meeting structure to keep each other on track, and enjoy stimulation from connecting with relatable people who are on a similar journey of late career innovation.

What’s a mission-oriented late career?

It’s when you’re in the last 20% of your career and you’re ramping up your efforts to make a difference, create impact or leave a legacy. Your interest might be in health and wellbeing, environment, creativity, technological innovation, or something else.

You might be working on your mission through your job or through activity outside your job, or you might be pivoting in your life journey in some other way. Your impact might be focused on a local place, a region or state, or a dispersed global community. You’re navigating how to build up or build across, when people might assume you’re winding down. Picture it like this:

You’re on the upward ticking dotted line. You’re still passionate about making a difference, but not in the same way as when you were 25 or 30. Our ‘career-spans’ and ‘health-spans’ have lengthened, but there’s no instruction book for re-making a late and longer career for impact. You’re ‘too old’ to have a mentor — you’re supposed to be the mentor. People (maybe including yourself) expect you to have everything figured out, ‘by now’.

The truth is, a lot of us late career folks don’t have things figured out and would love to have a late career mentor. So MOLCA acts as your mentor, a group of motivated, late-career peers.

How MOLCA works

Imagine logging on to the call with your MOLCA team. The meeting format is set, so you know what to expect. The team’s eager to hear how you did in the past couple of weeks. Since you hit a snag, you want their advice and insights. In fact, you never realised that interacting with people from different professions and locations would help you uncover such great ideas. Your insights also help them on their projects. You’re talking more about things that matter.

In between meetings, you can take some of MOCLA’s ‘micro courses’ and workshops to get inspiration and tools for your mission, on topics like design thinking, impact science (eg ways of improving and measuring impact), entrepreneurial mindset, increasing your ‘health span,’ and mapping your ‘career span.’ 

Your MOLCA peer group are relatable because they too:

  • Are trying to harness meaningful things
  • Are working to make a clear narrative out of interdisciplinary careers, where accomplishment looks different
  • Are more careful and strategic with their time than they were in their 20s and 30s
  • Have worries about keeping skills current
  • Are often balancing care for quite elderly parents with guiding college-age or adult children affected by the pandemic
  • Have the challenge of deciding how to deploy any status or influence they’ve built over their career
  • See the future opening up, full of possibilities



I’m Ann Thorpe, facilitator, partnership manager, design thinker and convenor of MOLCA. At 59, I’m a climber. Literally, that’s me at the climbing gym.

I’ve been talking to late career people like you and me, and a lot of them are casting about for the way forward. It’s dawning on us that expectations, experiences, and capabilities of late career are not what they used to be. Whether you’re 58 or 64, you probably feel more like you’re you’re 40. And there’s more you want to do.

For me, the Mission-Oriented Late Career Alliance emerges from several places:

      • A sense that there are a lot of people interested in talking about this late career phase but who don’t have a place to find and connect with this kind of peer
      • Worry about a world facing climate change, polarization, and pandemics

I’m a professional facilitator so I know that MOLCA meetings need a great structure that ensures 100% participation, evenly, among the group for both giving and getting feedback. By following the structure, your team doesn’t have to worry about how to organise each meeting, you just get on with the work.

Why you should look forward to joining a group of strangers

It may feel odd to join a group of strangers, but actually, you’ll be connected by the fact that you all have a mission for impact with your late career. And connecting with strangers in itself has value. People you know less well (weak ties) are more likely to be a source of new and diverse information that’s useful and relevant. They’re outside your social bubble, connected to different networks.

Why MOLCA works

MOLCA teams bring motivation, because they’ll be asking how you’re doing on the steps for your mission, and they’re counting on you to do the same for them. They bring a sense of community, since everyone on the team is Working On A Thing. They bring improvement—for example in helping you set better goals, refine your approach or update your problem solving skills.

Research shows that our actions ‘rub off’ on others. So if you surround yourself with people actively working toward their goals, you’re more likely to stick with yours too. Being in a team also means you’re more likely to push yourself harder than you otherwise would (thanks to the Köhler motivation gain effect)

All this will help you to engage outside of MOLCA meetings — take action, and move out of your comfort zone. You’ll be prototyping your way forward, sometimes failing quickly so you can stop working on the wrong problems. You’ll be reframing problems, instead of saying ‘that won’t work’ you’ll be asking ‘how could that work for me?’

Finally MOLCA works because you’re investing in it and yourself. There’s a modest membership fee (on the order of $12/month) to bolster commitment, filter out tire-kickers and cover the cost of assembling and running the alliance: finding team mates, providing the frameworks, connecting you online, and bolstering the process with regular micro-courses and workshops.

The ‘mission’ for MOLCA is to connect fellow travellers in late career and help them grow.

It’s impossible to predict the future, but once you take action, you change the future that’s possible.

What’s included in the membership:

  • Initial ‘joining’ process that helps you articulate your mission (a starting one, it may evolve) and understand the meeting structure so you know what to expect
  • Invitation to join with peers in the same life stage via a group that meets about every two weeks to support and keep each other accountable in their missions.
  • Structured meeting format that means you can relax and know that you both get and give meaningful input in each meeting.
  • Monthly supplemental micro-courses and workshops, these are recorded for you to access later if need be.
  • Online platform for chatting with peers in between meetings and events
  • A weekly, short ‘bulletin boost’ by email
  • Possibility (but not guarantee) of meeting in person with people who are near you geographically

But it’s not for everyone

It’s probably not for you if:

  • You mainly just need to find a job
  • You’re not really ready to take action, try stuff, or explore your mindset
  • You’re uncomfortable with a structured, online meeting 
  • You can’t afford a modest fee
  • You don’t have access to hardware and software necessary to join internet-based meetings and platforms
  • You haven’t hit your 50s yet
  • You’re retired

Sign up for the Beta

If you’re interested in joining the MOLCA beta, expected to start in February 2024, sign on to the waiting list. The Beta (or pilot test) will run for a few months without any fees, but we’ll be asking for feedback and trialling the methods. Please fill in the information below and we’ll get in touch with further information. Don’t miss out, the deadline is extended to 14 February 2024 for a late February start.

If you’re thinking ‘maaybeee…’ then go ahead and sign up, you’ll get more information and you can decide then. And please spread the word! If you know someone who might be interested, pass it along.

We’ll reply via email to comments and questions from the above form, but they won’t be visible on this site. They’ll contribute to an eventual FAQ (frequently asked questions).