- What are the 3 biggest challenges facing job seekers over 40? a) They don’t focus their years of experience into a succinct resume that is focused to one specific job. b) They set their salary too high. c) They are competing with younger workers who utilize tools such as LinkedIn and Search Engines better.
- What are the strongest assets job seekers over 40 have to offer a company? a) Mature decision making – knowing not to “sweat the small stuff”, prioritization, understanding politics b) Experience c) Having a wide network of colleagues
- Why are employers sometimes reluctant to hire older workers? a) Older workers can seem set in their ways. b)They may also be demanding or hard to manage. Young managers may be uncomfortable with this. c)They may not have as much energy or motivation to succeed.
- What can job seekers over 40 do specifically to increase their chances of being hired?
a) Be flexible on salary and other terms.
b) Stay in shape and up to date in style/look – get advice from someone other than a spouse on what to wear.
c) Understand how to work with younger people, read up on cultural differences – The Workplace 2020 is a great book with insights to the differences in age.
d) Take a new course to upgrade your skills, especially if you haven’t taken any classes in 4+ years.
e) Get advice on the current vocabulary for industry terms – people today say “business intelligence systems” or “BI” twenty years ago people talked about “Decision Support Systems” – same concept. You want to avoid antique terms and use the current terms.
f) Be careful not to reminisce about the “old days” “Cobol” “Mainframes” or “Typewriters”. Also avoid treating the hiring manager or HR personnel like sons/daughters or imply that you know everything and can teach them. Make a point to respect their ideas and education.
g) Be up front and say you are very comfortable working in an environment of different ages, genders and races/cultures.
h) Be sure to discuss your motivation and show that you are interested in making a contribution and hitting new goals. Some older professionals give the impression that they are waiting a few years to retire. That won’t help.