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Careers After 50 – Make Your Age Related Advantages Work For You!

Finding that right career after 50 may be a struggle but studies have shown that job hunters age 50 and older have found new careers and jobs in record numbers. In fact it is the only age group showing gains in employment. Changing careers after 50 can bring to the job hunting process a whole new set of challenges but overall with the right job hunting strategies you can reach your career goals. The biggest roadblocks many after 50 experience in finding a new job or career after 50 are self-imposed. If you have doubts about your abilities and how your age will negatively impact the hiring process you have a big handicap to overcome. Job hunters of any age that exude confidence and project a positive attitude will always have an advantage in searching and winning the right job. Moreover, job hunters after 50 who develop plans to counteract negative stereotypes about their age will generate other significant job hunting benefits. So let’s stop being defensive about your age and get on the offensive in your campaign for a new career or new job: Level the Playing Field: You will probably be interviewed by someone much younger than you. They may have wrong-headed ideas about your age even before the interview starts. Most, if not all of these myths they are not permitted to in ask about. These ideas are out there so to be proactive you must be prepared in the course of the interview to answer them. You don’t have to show up at the interview with your gym bag. But you can weave into the interview stories of your frequent physical activities. If you haven’t missed a day in years due to illness; this can also be mentioned. In answering interview questions make it a point to tell the interviewer about new skills you’ve acquired in the past few years. This will dispel the ideas that you are stuck in the past and are incapable of learning. If in the past you successfully worked for a younger manager add this fact to your interview questions. Also, discuss you experience working well with co-workers of all ages. Showcase Your Experience: Over your working life you’ve had many chances to hit the ground running, to learn new methods and concepts, take this opportunity to emphasize these desirable abilities. As you’ve learned new skills and effectively used new technology be sure that this experience is emphasized in your resume and during the course of the interview. Another stereotype of older workers is that you are stuck in the past and lack imagination. Answer questions that showcase how you used your imagination to solve problems and created out of the box thinking that resulted in benefits for your employer. If a relevant accomplishment occurred more than 10 years age, treat it like it happened yesterday. Focus your experience on what you can do for the employer rather than your years of experience or when you graduated from college. Final Thoughts: Energy and a high level of interest in the career opportunity will put you ahead of many younger job candidates. Dress appropriately for the interview. Build a fitness and diet plan into your career change planning and job hunt effort. It will boost your confidence help your overall job hunting attitude. Remember: preparation, study and a positive pro-active approach will move you ahead of many younger job hunters. Learn more about how career change planning and working your career plan can help you find your dream job in a career that you’ll love. Discover up to date job hunting ideas and tips at You’ll find informative articles on career planning and job hunting along with stories of individuals just like you who successfully made career planning after 50.

Job Hunting After 50 – Move Ahead of the Kids!

Job hunting after 50-move ahead of the kids and get you job hunting effort back on track.

Job hunting after 50 is no picnic. Either you’re unemployed or your current job is on the brink of ending.

You’ve built what you think is a great resume. After sending out a number of resume application packages you find your job hunting after 50 seems to have reached a dead-end.

You send out emails and make phone calls and nothing seems to work. Are you hoping the economy will approve so job hunting will result in some success? We all know that to worry or be overly concerned about something you cannot control will lead to nothing positive.

Finding the right job in today’s job market is difficult. There are many times hundreds of résumé’s received for each job opening. Discouragement is everywhere. We see it everywhere in the media. Our friends and relatives reinforce the negatives in the job market.

It’s real easy to be sucked into this negative mind set. You’re working hard on a daily basis and the results are just not happening. Are you disheartened? Probably you are but don’t let this feeling stand in your way.

Now what are the job hunting related things you have control over? Let’s get your job hunting after 50 back in gear taking control and moving forward.

First, it isn’t you. If you don’t get a response to your application does not mean you are not qualified, or your age is against you, or you didn’t cross the right t or dot the i. It’s real simple, take the lack of action to mean just that, it’s not personal.

Second, what is the difference between your efforts and others who seem to be getting job interviews and finding employment?

You send out resumes every day and time passes and all you hear is deafening silence. You make a series of calls and get no responses. So you take some time off which means you do not read some information which would help you in your job hunt. So you miss some important job hunting techniques and continue on the same path.

While other younger job hunters are ramping up their job search efforts your effort seems to have hit the doldrums.

And you get even less results and more discouraged. Your frustration grows, your original job hunting goals seem unattainable and too difficult and you slow down some more. You rationalize that you’re just wasting paper and stamps. Let’s stop this nonsense, right now.

Third, now is the time to start over; your first step is to set daily, weekly and monthly realistic but stretch goals in your job hunt over 50.

You know you have marketable skills so let’s get busy getting the best resume in front of as many relevant eye balls as possible. If you want your ships to come in you have to put a large number of ships out on the ocean.

If you wait until the economy becomes better, or you get the right feelings to reenergize your job search plan, you’ll be waiting a long time. Someone younger than you will grab the very job that you are exactly qualified for. Now is the time to get back in the game, or raise your job hunting after 50 to a higher better focused level.

Fourth, get some help in your job search. Go to your network and find someone who can review and give you advice on improving your resume. There are others who can help you find jobs in the hidden job market. Others can direct you to sources where you can study a whole range of successful proven job search techniques.

Finally, work on improving what you can control. Stop listening to those negative voices. Rebuild you career and career hunting plan and take action and work you plan each and every day. Celebrate your successes as you reach and exceed each written job search goal.

With your new reenergized job hunt plan after 50, the right job and career will now be more clearly in sight.

By John Groth. For more about how career change planning and working your career plan can help you find your dream job in a career that you’ll love. Discover up to date ideas and tips at You’ll find informative articles on career planning and job hunting along with stories of individuals just like you who successfully found the right job by career planning after 50.

Age Discrimination During the Job Search

Fairly frequently many individuals sense that they are being discriminated against because of their age throughout the job search process. Should they be older than, suppose, forty five years old, many people begin to think that their numerous years of experience as well as their birth years begin to work against them within the job search world. This might, or might not be true; however the belief is the fact that many organizations, particularly the big corporations, apply age discrimination.

In all of my numerous years being a hiring manager, human resources professional, as well as a small business owner I have not experienced, nor observed, any kind of age discrimination with regard to any hiring situation. Never! Even so, i am not saying that this doesn’t necessarily take place. And might you become an unwilling recipient regarding age discrimination you may well be encouraged to search out the recommendations from a lawyer. However, the actual proof will be for you to prove you had been discriminated against according to your actual age.

Whenever I am interviewing candidates for virtually every available job I’m attempting to fill age in no way comes into the situation. The main reason for this is that it’s against the law to take into consideration a person’s age with regards to their eligibility for any job that they’re hoping to be hired for. Provided that the actual candidate has got the required skills as well as education coupled with high quality experiences based on the specifications of the position the particular candidate is going to be viewed as a serious candidate through the job applicant screening process.

A very important factor to consider is the fact that for each and every unique open job which is openly advertised, whether on the web or perhaps in the local weekend newspaper, you might have somewhere between fifty to one hundred fifty applicants regarding these jobs. Of these, say, one hundred applicants, roughly thirty will be really qualified as well as uniquely suited with regard to this unique job. The additional seventy or so applicants may have various degrees of experience and skill-sets that may possibly match up very closely in what the particular employer is looking for or won’t match it even the least bit.

It really is human nature to genuinely believe that you didn’t get the position you applied for, or even interviewed for, simply because of your age (aka age discrimination ). All of us search for factors as to the reasons something failed to occur apart from the most obvious simple fact that you had been not chosen for a number of reasons that will have absolutely nothing related to you whatsoever – or your actual age. The job interview process is an extremely difficult situation to navigate for just about any job seeker simply because of the amount of job hopefuls that submit an application as well as the many factors which are completely outside the applicant’s control.

Rather than concentrating on whatever you view being the reason behind not becoming a job candidate which was selected, give attention to approaches to strengthen your job interview skills/style along with your capability to express the additional value you are able to provide any one single employer. Focus on being the job seeker that shines and also is “confident and capable” therefore evolving into the career candidate that companies seek to invest in.

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10 Tips For Finding a Job When You Are Over 40


Here are 10 top tips for finding a job if you are over 40. I encourage you to read them all because any one of them could make the difference for you. As a qualified leadership trainer I am very conscious that breakthrough ideas may come either from what you read, or they may just come as a flash of inspiration triggered by something in your unconscious mind as a result of reading. In other words, this is a process that stimulates creative thinking and forces you to consider new ideas. I hope you find it useful. Here are the Top 10 Tips:


1. Specialise – There has been a trend in recent years for employers to seek out increasingly specialised skills in their recruitment process. Think about what your specialist strengths are and how you could help an organisation by applying them. Then seek out opportunities that require these specialist skills. Although there may be a smaller number of jobs in your particular specialism, your chances of securing one of them are much better. So for example, if your skills lie in sales, think about what industry sectors or geographies you might have built experience in. Which other companies need to sell into those customers?


2. Broaden your search – It may be necessary to look outside of your immediate geographic or industry area in order to find the right job. By broadening your search you expose yourself to the opportunity of finding something that you would otherwise have missed. This may give you a difficult decision to make but at least it will be your decision which is always better than not having a decision at all.


3. Register with agencies – It may sound too obvious to mention but it is important to register with a reasonable number of appropriate recruitment agents. The opportunity to use the internet to do this makes life a lot simpler. It does however remove the human element and you do run the risk of just becoming a statistic if you don’t insist on a face to face meeting or at least a telephone conversation. Furthermore there are some agencies that specialise either directly or indirectly on more mature or experienced workers. Search out this type of agent in your area and make friend with them!


4. Dedicate a specific amount of time to job searching – With plenty of time on your hands it is easy to function without urgency. Treat your job search as if it was your job. Start at a particular time, form a to-do list of activities you need to complete during the day, schedule your own coffee and lunch breaks and decide how many hours per day you wish to spend on it. This is important to enable you to make structured progress but it is also important because it should allow you to switch off when you have achieved your objectives or tasks for the day. I cannot stress how important it is to switch off and don’t forget to celebrate your successes or progress each day.


5. Exercise Use your spare time to keep in shape – We have all heard the saying that a fit body = a fit mind. By doing exercise and getting the oxygen flowing around in your body you will make yourself far more productive on a day to day basis. You will also feel good and present yourself better when you meet people.


6. Do something for the community – Most working people are so busy with work that they never have time to get involved with local activities. Why not use your temporary spare time to support a local charity or help to organise local events in the community. You will be amazed at who else you might meet in these “unusual” places. I know CEOs who help out at the local boy scouts or girl guide associations


7. Consider part time work – There are numerous part time job opportunities that you may be able to use to bring in some short term income. Many of these may expose you to new people, new industries, with the potential of turning into a permanent job or business opportunity. it is worth registering with at least one agency that specialises in part time work. I know people that do any of the following part time: HR, finance, sales, IT support, training, restaurant and bar work, community work, charity work.


8. Take a sales job – For many people who have never sold, this may seem like a fate worse than death. But rest assured that many sales people are among the top earning employees in most organisations. If you have never sold before, you will possess knowledge and experience that is valuable to another company. They are often prepared to provide you with some selling skills training and are also willing to pay you handsomely for your contribution (albeit partly commission based). If you are nervous about this type of move, try to negotiate a bigger basic salary and other perks such as travel, car, phone, pension and laptop.


9. Networking sites – Most people now have some experience of social networking through Facebook, Linked-In and many more. They provide a great way to cost effectively build a community of connected people. Although I resisted for a long time, I specifically selected LinkedIn because it seemed to be more business orientated than Facebook. I now have hundred of people that I can communicate with on a regular basis and it automatically updates me on their movements.


10. Retraining – Some people are horrified by the idea of retraining after the age of 40. But this may not be as ridiculous as it may sound. Many mature people have become web designers or developed some other specialism as a result of retraining and many have gone on to become very successful as a result. The beauty or retraining in the modern world is that it has become much cheaper and much easier than ever before, particularly with the advent of the internet. With the pace of change and the emergence of new technology, it is possible to become a leading expert in almost anything in just a matter of months. Just imagine how much free information is available on the web on any subject you can imagine. Did you know that if you were to read the top 20 articles or 5 books on almost any new subject you would probably be in the top 1% in terms of your knowledge expertise? Why not pick a subject and just go for it! You can read more tips and advice on how to find jobs for over 40s by visiting Article by Joe G Nathan.

Job Hunting – Should You Lower Your Expectations?

When it comes to determining whether or not you should lower your expectations when hunting for a job, there are a number of important factors that need to be taken into consideration. One of those factors is your need for a job. For instance, do you have a family to support? Do you have rent, mortgage, or car payments that need to be made? If you do, your need for a job may actually be quite high, especially if you are not receiving money from your state’s unemployment fund. If your survival depends on having a job, you may need to lower your expectations, even just temporarily.

Another factor that needs to be examined, when determining whether or not you should lower your expectations when hunting for a job, is your expectations. For instance, are they reasonable? Are you interested in working as a doctor? If you are, do you have a degree in medicine? If not, your expectations are not only too high, but they are unreasonable. The first step in not being required to lower your expectations when searching for a job is making sure that your expectations are reasonable. For instance, if you worked as a retail cashier for a while and attended business school, you may want to think about trying to acquire a job as a retail store manager. This type of goal is one that is just right, as it isn’t too unrealistic.

It is also advised that you examine the current job forecast for the industry that you would like to work in. In keeping with the above mentioned example of a retail store manager, if the retail industry isn’t doing too well, there is a good chance that not as many new retail stores will open up in or around your area. This may limit the number of retail store manger jobs that are available. In this case, you may need to lower your expectations or just change them, to include something different.

Of course, what you need to remember is that if you do need to lower your expectations when hunting for a job, especially if your survival depends on it, it doesn’t have to be permanent. For instance, if you are required to take a job as a retail store cashier, but you are actually qualified to work as a school teacher, your retail store job doesn’t have to last forever. When working and making a little bit of money, possibly enough to help your family or pay your bills, you can continue on by searching for teaching opportunities. If you keep after your goal long enough, you should be able to find an opportunity that you are more than qualified for. If and when that time comes, you could choose to give up the job that caused you to lower your expectations.

Although you may not necessarily want to take a job that you may consider to be beneath you, there may come a time in life when you have to. If and when that time comes, it is important that you remember that nothing has to be permanent or forever etched in stone.

Graham Moore Graham has 9 years experience working with companies and individuals in the areas of recruitment and development. Follow my bog for further free tips and advice.

Boom Or Bust – Job Hunting Tips For the Mature Age Worker

If you are over 45 and suddenly find yourself made redundant or seeking a career change, the thought of having to hit the job trail and compete against people years younger than yourself can be downright scary. It may have been years since you’ve had to update your resume or attend a job interview, and you may be feeling more than a little rusty.

But take heart – as a mature-age job seeker you have plenty to offer, and employers are increasingly valuing your unique set of skills and experiences. And rightly so – the Australian Bureau of Statistics estimates that 85 per cent of new employment growth will come from those aged over 45 by the year 2016. Now more than ever, it is imperative for both job-seekers and employers to get with the times and recognise the value that mature workers offer.

The facts about Boomers

The Australian Human Rights Commission has found that mature-age employees can save costs to employers by staying in their jobs longer – in contrast to sometimes fickle Gen Y workers (who have just been advised by the federal Employment Minister to stop being so picky about jobs during tough times). Workers aged over 55 are five times less likely to change jobs compared with workers aged 20 to 24, and this directly reduces ongoing recruitment and training costs.

And contrary to the perception that older workers are less healthy, ABS data has also found that mature-age workers were the least likely group to take days off due to illness, thereby reducing costs and negative impacts on productivity.

One of the most common myths about older workers is that they are less technologically savvy than their younger colleagues – but older people are, in fact, the fastest-growing users of technology.

What older workers have to offer

Critchley enumerates the many assets that older workers bring to the table. These include a wider skills base and broader experience, greater wisdom and maturity, a solid work ethic, ability to speak their mind and take action, reliability, dependability and loyalty to their employer.

Mature-age workers could also be key to businesses in hard economic times. Mercer’s Workplace 2012 states that ‘Older employees can be a very valuable resource, offering much needed experience and corporate memory, which may be critical to successfully re-building a business outside of the economic crisis… The experience and guidance of older workers who have been in the organisation for some time can be invaluable in developing younger staff.’

Industry perceptions

Marketplace perceptions of mature-age workers can vary a lot depending on the market segment, says Phil Hatchard of Adage, a website which caters to mature-age job seekers and mature age-friendly employers. Small and medium enterprises (SMEs) tend to be extremely receptive to mature-age candidates, valuing their versatility and breadth and depth of experience, which can be invaluable to small and medium-sized businesses.

Recruiters, on the other hand, can present more of a challenge as their age profile tends to be more youthful. Larger and higher-volume recruitment agencies find it hard to educate their consultants about the value of hiring maturity. ‘They tend to perceive older workers as being harder to place in roles due to misconceptions that they are less productive, won’t fit in with the “dynamic” culture or may be too expensive. Of course this is not grounded in fact. That said, smaller niche agencies are usually owned and operated by more experienced recruiters and they have a higher level of understanding and commitment to mature age hires,’ says Hatchard.

Out of practice… but not out of the game

The mature worker’s tendency to stay for longer periods of time with one employer means that many are at a loss when they suddenly find themselves looking for work. ‘Many older workers haven’t had to write a resume, develop their interview technique or know how to effectively market themselves via online technologies,’ says Phil Hatchard. But luckily, it’s never too late to learn.

What you can do

‘Approach every job with enthusiasm and energy,’ says Steve Gunther of 2discover, a recruitment firm which demonstrates a strong commitment to placing mature-age workers. ‘The reality is that you have more experience, the same desire to do a good job and succeed as anyone in the marketplace, young or old. Technology may be the only thing between you and someone from another generation. Bring yourself up to speed in using the Internet, computer skills, and resume and cover letter presentation and content.’

Know your strengths and market value

‘Firstly, take some time to map out your key skills, strengths and passions, and be clear about the value that you bring to an organisation. In the current market, experience and knowledge is vital to help companies who may be struggling through tougher times,’ advises Hatchard.

It is important to recognise that even if you have worked in one industry for a long time, your skills are transferable – and this is something you need to emphasise to potential employers.

Stay connected with the market

Do whatever you can to make contacts, network, keep in the loop and keep updated. This could mean attending networking events, using social events and your kids’ school events to make contacts, joining professional bodies or attending professional development courses. Bring your business cards with you wherever you go.

And don’t be afraid to call on old contacts. ‘Utilise the rolodex of contacts that you’ve built up over the years and contact those who you feel may be able to help point you in the right direction. You’d be surprised at how helpful some people can be if you just ask!’ says Hatchard.

He also suggests that you select a reputable executive search or recruitment firm to provide you with advice and guidance on who may be hiring in your space, as well as keeping up on industry news via online newsletters or business trade magazines to find out where the activity is, what projects are underway and which companies are currently flourishing in the market.

Stay positive

While job hunting can be disheartening at times, it’s important to be resilient and stay positive. When you walk into an interview, you have to create the right impression almost instantaneously – because ‘employers can spot frustration and despondency a mile off,’ warns Hatchard. ‘Presentation is vital once you have a foot in the door so stay fit and healthy and keep the energy levels up.’

‘The thing to remember is self-value and self-worth. Mature-age workers have just as much (if not more) to offer an employer as younger workers. The trick is ensuring that you present and articulate your key strengths in a manner that represents you as a person and as a professional,’ stresses Gunther.

So walk tall and hold your head up high, knowing that you have plenty to offer a future employer. It’s only a matter of time before you find the right one who will value your experience and allow you to keep growing and developing in your professional life.

By Josie Chun – Career FAQs has everything you need to know about career news, job advice, sample resumes, cover letters and more at

Staring Down Age Discrimination in Your Job Search

Does age discrimination exist? Yep. Can you eliminate it? Nope. But the good news is that you have some level of control, probably more than you think. Before we tackle that, let’s get it all out on the table. WHY does age discrimination exist? Like all forms of discrimination, there are some misguided assumptions or beliefs that people may have.

– Older people will cause my health care costs to rise.

– Older people are set in their ways and can’t/ won’t learn new tricks

– Older people are technologically out of date.

– Older people have less energy and are really looking to just coast to retirement.

Before you get indignant and insist none of these apply to you, think of it this way. Let’s acknowledge that one or more of these thoughts may be in the mind of the person who has some control over your fate. But most hiring authorities are smart enough to keep from verbalizing their biases. What do you have control over and what do you not?

Clearly, you have no control over your chronological age, and you can’t actually eliminate an individual’s biases.

But you can mitigate the impact of these biases with a long hard look at yourself. Let’s attack them, one by one.

Older people will cost more as a part of my health plan.

Are you doing everything you can to maintain your health? Do you appear healthy and vital? If you are, or if you aren’t, it can show and often does show. Assumptions will be drawn.

Older people are set in their ways and can’t/ won’t learn new tricks (processes, methods, programs, etc.)

It’s not enough to say “I love learning new things!” Think back throughout your career and think of examples and stories that tell and show that you have eagerly embraced learning opportunities. Find opportunities to weave those examples in to the conversation.

Older people are technologically and otherwise out of date

Well, are you? If your technology skills are out of date, it may be assumed that your ideas and professional skills are out of date as well. In the world we are now living in, outdated tech skills really do impact your effectiveness. If you are not prepared to operate in a digital world, your “bag of tricks” is significantly limited. If you find yourself challenged in this area, get it fixed without delay.

Take a look in the mirror. Is your physical presence up to date? Nothing screams old like out of date glasses, clothes and hair style. If your clothes don’t quite fit anymore, or haven’t left the closet since the Reagan administration, you need to make a small investment and update your look. Maybe physical appearance shouldn’t matter, but we all know that it does.

Older people have less energy and are really looking to just coast to retirement.

Again, what does your physical presence say? Are you looking people in the eye, smiling, walking with energy? How do you spend your free time? If you are involved in any higher energy pursuits (running, hiking, camping, etc.) you may be able to work it in to the conversation.

The positives? There are many! Older workers can be a great asset to the workforce for many reasons that can counterbalance, or even outweigh the perceived negatives. It’s no secret that a stronger work ethic, greater loyalty, less drama and more professional maturity often come with hiring older workers. We were raised differently, look at work differently and aren’t always necessarily looking for the next great thing or job. Think of examples of times when you have displayed those qualities as well, and look for opportunities to tell those stories.

Put yourself in the employer’s shoes. All want to find and hire people that will embrace their new role enthusiastically, will bring fresh thoughts to the table and will be a fully participating member of the team. That’s you, right? Then show it.

Julie Bauke, President of Congruity Career Consulting believes that we all deserve to “skip to the shower” on Monday mornings.

Unemployed And Overqualified For The Job? How to Respond

We can all remember looking for that first “real job” and hearing the words, “sorry, we need someone with more experience”. These are frustrating and disappointing words to an eager young job seeker. Years later, you are once again a job applicant. Have you been told “sorry, you are overqualified”? For me, the second scenario was more frustrating. As an inexperienced applicant, you almost anticipate that rejection. With years of job stability and sold work experience, it can be quite a shock to hear that these good qualities are causing the “overqualified” rejection.

How can you overcome this obstacle? Before you submit your resume for a position that you know or believe might fall in the overqualified category, review your resume and revise it. Often a hiring manager will toss out resumes that clearly signal too much experience, too much education – overqualified! In this situation, there is no interview. You have been labeled and rejected based on the resume.

Revise your resume to focus on why you are seeking this open position. Emphasize your skills and accomplishments. Include your reasons for interest in this position. For example, you might say that although your previous job was in management, you want a position with more balance and something less intense which would give you more time with family. In your cover letter, you might use the words from the job description to point out how the skills you possess match the employer’s needs. Down play any titles you may have held in previous jobs. For example, at one point, in the title insurance industry, I was officially a “Vice-President, Branch Manager”. After missing out on interviews because of the overqualified label, I removed “Vice President” from my resume. The purpose of this resume statement is to convince the hiring manager to schedule an interview with you.

In the interview, again down play any titles from previous jobs. Do not mention skills and experience that are not required for the open position. Focus on your ability to be a team player. Point out your loyalty to previous employers which can be validated by your longevity on prior jobs. If you are asked about salary, explain that you are flexible with regard to salary and that your previous salary is not relevant to your current job search.

If the hiring manager expresses concern that you may leave as soon as a better offer comes along, you might consider making an offer to sign a 12 month contract with the company.

The goal, of course, is a job offer. In this situation of “too much experience”, the hiring manager needs to be comfortable with your sincerity. No one wants to recommend a candidate for hire that leaves 60 days later. You can be honest without going overboard with your titles and accomplishments. Also, keep in mind, it is quite possible that the hiring manager will be a younger person so be sure you are friendly, relaxed and non-threatening. The overqualified label creates a tricky situation, but it can be successfully handled.


Mel Otero, author, worked in management in the mortgage banking industry and title insurance industry for over 25 years. She has started web sites and written articles to provide information, resources and inspiration during this difficult economy. She loves to write, learn and share experiences and information. Constantly researching and looking for helpful tools, the ultimate goal is making a positive difference in lives.

Should You Be Worried About Age Discrimination?

Almost every client I work with who’s above the age of 40 asks the same question at some point: Do I need to make myself look younger on my resume? The fear that they are being skipped over for younger candidates is clearly a widespread concern among today’s job seekers.

While I certainly encourage those with 30 or more years of work experience to only include what’s most relevant on their resumes, this article in the Wall Street Journal last week caused me to wonder whether age discrimination is really as rampant as people fear. One passage in particular jumped out at me:

Meanwhile, the share of people age 25-34 living with their parents jumped to 13.4% in 2010 from 12.7% in 2008… The poverty rate for adults age 25-34 living with their parents was 8.5%, but in that case they are considered part of a household. If their status was determined solely by their own income, 43% were below the poverty threshold for a single person.

This is data from the U.S. Census Bureau-generally a fairly credible source-and it states that almost 43% of our young workers are living below the poverty line. The Bureau of Labor Statistics also reported that those aged 25-34 suffered the highest unemployment rate of any age group in August 2010-9.8%. Those 55 and over actually had the lowest rate of unemployment at 7.3%.

I’m not suggesting that age discrimination doesn’t exist. If coloring your hair and buying a trendier interview suit will help you feel more confident during your job search, then go for it. However, the reality is that younger workers are facing a job market that’s just as tough as it is for older workers-and in many cases the younger ones have an even harder time getting hired because of their lack of experience. With more than 13% of the young worker population still living at home with their parents, it’s clear that even many with jobs are not making enough to live independently.

These statistics show that the job market has been tough on everyone. To increase your odds for an interview and an offer make sure your resume is completely customized and tailored to each position you apply to. For strategies at overcoming the “age issue” on your resume, speak with a certified resume writer today.

Jessica Holbrook Hernandez is an expert resume writer, career and personal branding strategist, author, speaker and President/CEO of Great Resumes Fast. She creates high-impact, best-in-class, resumes and cover letters that transform job searches into interviews and ultimately job offers. For more information about professional resume writing or to read more career and job search related articles visit or call 1.800.991.5187.

Fighting Age Discrimination – Successful Ways Baby Boomers Can Hold Their Job

Baby boomers are facing an increasing problem as the years go on. Besides worrying about social security and where they will go once they retire, baby boomers are having a difficult time maintaining jobs. This isn’t because of credentials or qualifications. It has to do with their age.

Baby boomers were born post World War II and before the Vietnam War when there was a massive increase in the number of children that were born in the United States. This a large group of people and companies are having a harder time maintaining them. The problems arise because the baby boomer generation is making a ton of money. Companies fire the older person, who is in their 50s and hire a young person out of college for half the salary. There is a way to fight this and that’s with the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA).

Everyone is protected from discrimination based simply on their age. The Equal Employment Commission has been inundated with age discrimination complaints over the past few years. There was an increase of 41 percent between 1999 and 2002 and keeps going up.

Baby boomers don’t have to worry about their job security when they know they have the EEOC working for them. If a problem does happen at work consider all the reasons. If you know you were doing a great job and there was no other reason for your firing, talk to the EEOC and see if someone can help you. Unfortunately, during these times of inflation, companies are making less money. They are looking at ways to save and will either layoff workers or buy them out. The oldest and highest paid are usually the first ones to go.

The ADEA isn’t a new concept. Discriminating in the workplace based on age has been illegal since 1967 when a law was passed that said no one is allowed to be discriminated based on any reason such as religion, race, sex, gender and age. For baby boomers, growing up during the civil rights movement could make you want to fight if you are fired. If you have right to, just take the proper steps to ensure you are getting everything you need.

Today’s baby boomers tend to have a stigma of being unhappy or jaded. If you look at everything they have to deal with, it’s easy to understand. Baby boomers not only have to be concerned with their job safety, but what will happen once they finish working. Social security is a mess and estimates say there won’t be enough to pay everyone. Healthcare is on the rise and with more baby boomers hitting the Medicare age, it will cost even more for medical bills. The worry and concern over these issues is valid. So, the last thing anyone of the baby boomer generation wants to worry about is whether they are being discriminated based on age at their workplace.

If you have felt discriminated based on age, call your local EOCC chapter. Speak with a representative and explain what has happened in your situation. They will explain to you the steps you need to take and where to go. You can even retain a lawyer if you feel you have a strong enough case. Find one that specializes in these types of cases. Getting someone with experience will be able to help you and show you all the exact steps that you will need to take. You don’t have to take it lying down. If you feel strongly that you have been discriminated against based on age, fight for your job and livelihood back.

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Career Change – How Old is Too Old?

The quick answer, for those that need to know now is, naturally enough, you are never too old to change careers. If I wanted to be ‘hokey’, I’d point you to articles on Grandma Moses and tell you to get inspired. Maybe even ask you to Google the 99 year old lady with a brand new law degree who’s forging ahead to get her ‘Doctorate’. But I won’t.

How many friends and family… and work mates do we know that hate their jobs? Many will tell us, usually agonisingly so, just how much they hate their work and then admit to being in that career for years. Sometimes for decades. It seems an impossibly stupid thing to do, staying in a career that does not give us the stimulation or satisfaction we crave. But so many of us do, our sanity saved only by our imagination and the daydream of being somewhere else and doing something else.

And what of the reasons we give for staying in a career that we don’t love? ‘I need the money’. ‘The boss can’t survive without me’. ‘I am loyal,’ ‘It’s a job and it’s close to home’. The excuses are a dime a dozen and they all sound the same. The excuses we use are usually quite interchangeable. We can apply them to our health and our relationships as well, e.g. ‘I needed her money’.

I heard Nigel Marsh, author of Fat Forty and Fired, say (in a TedX event) recently that if you don’t have plans for yourself, someone else will make you part of their plan. And that’s what we do, willingly hand over our soul and trade our own daydreams for the right to help someone else buy their yacht!

The saddest part is when we have traded much of our life in the name of meaningless loyalty, we find that the loyalty is not reciprocal. The words, “I’m sorry, we are moving in a new direction and you don’t fit as part of our future,” signal there is someone out there that can help our ex boss get that yacht faster and we are gone. The harsh reality is that we run at a 4% retrenchment rate in Australia. As each year passes, the chance of winning the ‘order of the boot’ out of the employment door rises. And then there is always the chance that we screw up and get fired!

Rather than take stock of ourselves and what we really desire, the action we’ll most likely take is to find another similar job and work to help the new boss get the harbourside mansion. Contrary to the song lyrics, history almost always repeats. The bone jarring question is, ‘Why’? Is it fear? Uncertainty? Or have we accepted that what we have always done is what we must always do? And therein lies perhaps the greatest excuse. Somewhere back in immaturity, we made a decision on what we thought we’d like to do and then invested time, money and some of our soul into making that immature decision work in with adulthood.

The world is full of self snared workers still willing to trade their futures for their past or because of their past. An unhappy dentist may cry, “but you don’t understand… it took me eight years of education to be a dentist. I can’t throw all that away”! The same guy owning an investment property for 8 years would sell in a New York minute if he knew the stakes were going down on property. It’s in our nature to hold on to what we have because of our past, but doesn’t it really have more to do with our future? No matter how much time we have left?

If we look to the future we have big decisions to make. And still so many of us don’t really know exactly what we’d do if we were allowed to do anything. And of course, we are allowed.

Over many years, I have submitted myself for psychometric testing for employment, allowing myself to be categorized to see if I was suitable to the needs of others. I’d be told I was a ‘high D’ in DISC and an ENTP in Myers Briggs, but I never considered what that meant for me. I’m maybe slow, but it was only a few years ago that it struck me that I could do this style of profiling on me, for me.

The downside was I got to label myself. The upside was that I was liberated, given the freedom to be me, and shown how I could play to my strengths and recognize the strengths of others, allowing them to play those to their advantage. This knowledge allowed me to change careers, aged forty nine.

Seven tips To navigating career change at any age;

1. Look to the future and how you want to spend your remaining time, rather than to the past.

2. Make plans (set goals) for you before you become part of someone else’s plan.

3. Be loyal to yourself first and give your loyalty wisely to others. Loyalty is not innate nor unconditional.

4. Confirm or refine your potential through utilising the many tools available. I like the Wealth Dynamics test at a cost of around $100US. I did it and it is my favourite for now, but you choose. Google Psychometric tests or career profiles and research before you pay.

5. Find / create / join a mastermind group and surround yourself with people that have complementary skills to you. You may find that this group will help you turn what you’d do for free into something that can earn you an income.

6. When you do step up and begin to do what you love, the first thing you will notice is that some one will appear from nowhere to try and knock you down. If it’s a total stranger, you are going places.

7. It really is only about the time we have left.

Oh yeah, and remember. You are never too old to change careers or anything else. Look at Grandma Moses and that 99 year old lawyer!

Chris Gibson is an NLP Practitioner, Life Coach, Speaker, Writer and author of “Memoirs of a Fat Bastard”.

He made massive change in the shape of his own body by losing 53 kilograms (115 lbs.) and keeping it off. Once he lost the fat in his mind, it fell off his body.

Email Chris Memoirs Of a Fat Bastard and Chris Gibson.TV.

Be Your Own Boss – Career Planning For Baby Boomers

Workers in the age group of 55 and older now represent one of the fastest-growing groups of self-employed people in the US. The total number of 55-plus Americans who choose to work for themselves has gone up by 28 percent since the year 2000. Compared with this, the statistics for most other age groups shows that numbers are either stagnant or actually declining as regards self-employment, according to government data. Baby boomers and seniors today account for a total of 56 percent of the self-employed workers in America. Clearly, many baby boomers are using self-employment as an easy transition move, a bridge to retirement.

Many boomers also feel younger and more productive than previous generations at this age. With increasing life expectancy and better overall health, baby boomers intend to work for much longer than most previous generations. But, they mostly want to work on their own terms. This is why they are creating jobs that give them a lot more control over their own lives and much more self-fulfillment. This is precisely the reason that so many of them choose to become their own boss. In their mid-50s, they much prefer working their own hours, maybe from their own home, to putting in 15-hour work days at corporate juggernauts where work takes over their life.

The large scale corporate downsizings over the recent years have also provided an additional impetus for older workers to consider entrepreneurship. There is also a financial angle to that. Older workers may have to accept buyouts from their erstwhile employers, but without the traditional pensions or the retiree health benefits, they can’t afford to retire. The biggest surprise, for baby boomers being downsized, is the high cost of health insurance. Without the employer-subsidized group coverage of their corporate jobs, many are shocked by the prices when they begin to shop for health insurance for themselves.

Whatever the reason for choosing this path, the good news is that most companies now have a new openness to outsourcing processes and hiring independent contractors, or consultants to perform certain tasks. This helps to create great business opportunities for the people with experience in various fields, who choose to become self-employed.

Anyone starting a business must have a good business plan which spells out exactly what and how they proposed to do. People also tend to underestimate the money needed to get started. Estimate properly, remembering that lenders will expect you to put up 20 to 30 percent of the cost.

Anna D. Banks , GCDF is an adjunct professor at Essex County College; career development and marketing coach; speaker, and author. Ms. Banks serves on the 2007-2008 Educational Development Committee of the International Association of Workforce Professionals (IAWP). Anna helps individuals design a game plan for a career or business. Since 1996, Anna has helped hundreds of job-seekers, managers, business owners, and sales professionals achieve career success.

Author’s Note: Do you have any questions about career development or lifestyle changes for Baby Boomers, which you think others, like you, would want to know the answers? Please post a comment on my blog Baby Boomer Pre-Retirement Tips or email your questions to me at