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Learn About Strategies for Older Workers

Getting the work you need requires more than “nose to the grindstone” or an up-to-date resume.

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Make a Plan To Earn Enough, Long Enough

Enough to Pay the Bills and to Have Enough for Retirement

  •  Your best option is usually to stay with your current employer, if you have one.
  • But most private-sector workers who work to their mid-to-late 60s will change employers after age 50.
  • Whether you stay or change employers, key adjustments could significantly improve your prospects.

Less than half of men in the private sector, age 58-62, work full-time for their age-50 employer

Data from U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics Current Population Survey. 

How Employers View Older Workers

What They Value & What They Don’t

Yes, there is discrimination. Employers generally see older workers as costly, inflexible, and technically out-of-date – but also diligent and reliable.

What Employers Rate HighWhat Employers Rate Low
Doing quality workPerforming new tasks
Ability to get along with co-workersGetting training
Loyalty and dedicationTrying new approaches
Individual initiative / Someone you can count on in a crisisUsing new technologies

Some Like It Gray

Find out why two U.S. companies prefer to hire older workers.

Could You Accept Less Status?

Don’t Let Foolish Pride Get in the Way

Workers over 50 who change jobs typically get jobs with lower pay and lower status.  Could you, if such a job were your best opportunity?  (If you do, you might notice other benefits once you adjust.)

Adjusting Who You Are

Richard Cohen, a former manager at a large company, speaks about his experience.

The Shock of a Younger Boss

It’s Also Hard for Your Boss

90% of employers fear conflicts when hiring older workers

If your boss, or a potential boss, is younger, chances are you both could be uncomfortable.  But if this is your best opportunity, you must do what you can to make the relationship work.

Working for a Younger Boss?

Kathi and Katherine share their “field-tested ideas” for handling a boss half your age with half the experience.

Find the Right Match

With Networking & the Internet

Most older workers today have done many things and have many different skills. So take stock of what you can do – and where what you can do has the most value.

Networking is usually the best way to find a good match, and most older workers now have many potential contacts.  The Internet is also a powerful new matching tool – type “job search” in a search engine to find sites that can help.  And use social networking to rapidly expand your network.

The government also provides employment resources through the Department of Labor, which sponsored the creation of Career One Stop – an excellent point to start your job search and career options.

And don’t forget to check if your state or local government provides job-search assistance. Minnesota, for example, provides a comprehensive set of resources for job seekers at iseek.org.

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