Learning Unit 4: Case study 1: Employment at 50+: the benefits and disadvantages of self-employment

What will I be able to do at the end of this learning unit?

  • Contextualise the reality of 50+ unemployment
  • List the relevant skills to become a 50+ entrepreneurs
  • Describe the benefits and disadvantages of self-employment
  • Develop a self-diagnosis of one’s own entrepreneurial competences
  • Explore employment opportunities within the social business sector and silver economy sector
  • Provide guidance to 50+ individuals on how to establish professional relationships with people and companies with the aim of collaborating on common projects and businesses
  • Advise on the development and implementation of plans, programs, projects and activities, in order to accelerate social entrepreneurial initiatives

Source: https://www.dreamstime.com

Employment at 50+ can be a daunting concept. As with many things in life, there are benefits and disadvantages to this concept. However, it is essential to remember that entrepreneurial ventures can be pursued at any age in life.


  • Savings on some expenses
  • Flexible schedule
  • Freedom to choose your work
  • Freedom to choose who you work with
  • Independence
  • Pride of owning your own business


  • Unstable income
  • Working longer hours
  • Loneliness and isolation
  • No job security
  • Investment risks
  • Personal sacrifices

Explore this concept further, with the case study provided on Henry Nestlé. This case study can offer you an insight into the mind of a senior entrepreneur and inspire you to consider options within this field.

Henri Nestle started as a pharmacist’s assistant, but when he sold the company, which bore his name at the age of 60 it was already a global success selling his renowned milk-based baby food – Farine Lactee – across five continents.

His background in chemistry, and his scientific knowledge molded his philosophy and his forthcoming strategy to business. An entrepreneur and consistent innovator, he tested with the production of everything from lemonade to cement before developing the Farine Lactee formula that would spell his wealth. Initially, Henri Nestle purchased the milk required for his baby food each morning but by the summer of 1869, two years after establishing the Farine lactee, this was no longer functional, so he chose to buy his supplies from a milk collection centre in a small village close to Vevey, from where it was brought to the factory

Although he was from Germany, Henri Nestle, and his heirs, exploited the reputation for Switzerland’s high-quality milk as an aspect of the product’s marketing plan from the start. Nestle remains one of the world’s biggest purchasers of milk, as well as things like cocoa and coffee, pamphlets, distributed to doctors and pharmacists, which demonstrated the excellence of his product.

His knowledge of the significance of developing a brand was cited in advertising campaigns of those who acquired the company after he sold it, making advertisements that stay beautiful as well as practical.

By 1875, Nestle’s products were sold globally from Indonesia to Egypt and from the US to Argentina. This international initiative to create products for consumers the world over has persisted.

From this case study, it is clear to see how Henri Nestlé paved the way for a new product that has become an international seller worldwide. Through perseverance and commitment to his business, Nestlé proved that his original business plan could be adapted to reach a greater audience on a global scale.

From this, we can see how Nestlé pursued a career that has provided products for customers from  Indonesia to Egypt and from the US to Argentina. His marketing campaigns, and commitment to his brand ensured his success and made him the founder of the popular brand we are all familiar with today!