Age discrimination is mindset discrimination

Posted by Marc Cenedella

08:00 AM

One of the things I was most surprised by when I got into the jobs business over a decade ago was the prevalence and practice of age discrimination in hiring right here in the USA.

Oh, sure... we're not like some overseas markets where job ads explicitly demand youth, or a particular gender, or beauty(!), in the applicant, but there it is...

The blank look on your interviewer's face when you talk about growing up in the 60s or 70s. The skepticism with which your Snap-twit-facebook-whats-gram-app skills are regarded.  The cultural references that pass silently like two Teslas in the night... 

Well, at least the younger generation seems to get your reference to "Gunga-galunga" and giggle.

Most of the time.

All of it adds up to a pernicious undercutting of your ability to get hired and get ahead.  We have to admit the ugly truth that age discrimination exists -- there's no doubt about it.

Topics: Marc's Newsletter, Age and Your Job Search

Are you becoming obsolete at work?

Posted by Amanda Augustine

10:07 AM

Stay competitive in the workplace with this top advice.


You’re well-established in your career and you have the track record to prove it. You’re comfortable at your current role and management seems content with your work. All is right with the world.

But as Millennials flood the job market, you get a little anxious. What if your experience is not enough? While this concern is reasonable, take heart. A survey by Adecco found that hiring managers are three times more likely to hire experienced workers than their Gen Y counterparts.

That said, it’s in every professional’s best interest to take steps to remain relevant and competitive in the workforce. Below are some tips to help you accomplish just that. [TWEET]

Topics: Ask Amanda, Age and Your Job Search, Professional Development, Workplace

In the job search & over 50: Part III of III

Posted by Amanda Augustine

08:30 AM

The third and final article in a three-part series on conducting a job search later in life.

TheLadders_Age_Discrimination_InterviewAge discrimination doesn’t disappear once you’ve made it to the interviewing phase with a job opportunity. Read on for tips to help you maneuver around interview questions designed to reveal your age.


Before you head into an interview, do your research.  Visit Vault, Glassdoor and the company’s employment page on the web to get a better sense of the company culture. If you have any connections to the company, reach out to them for an informational interview to help you prepare. Depending on the company, you may need to adjust your interview wardrobe. For instance, if you walked into an interview at Google wearing a full suit and tie, you would look out of place.  Set a Google News Alert for the company in the days leading up to the interview so you stay up-to-date with relevant news.

Know your rights. There are certain questions that are off-limits – including those about your age. Oftentimes the interviewer isn’t aware of these laws, and is naively trying to break the ice by asking about your family, which may lead to inappropriate questions. In these cases, the best thing to do is redirect the question back to the interviewer. For instance, if they ask about your marital status, you can reply by saying, “It sounds like family is important to you. Are you married?” You’ve kept up the friendly chitchat without having to divulge any information about your personal life.

Topics: Ask Amanda, Interview, Age and Your Job Search

In the job search & over 50: Part II of III

Posted by Amanda Augustine

08:30 AM

The second article in a three-part series on conducting a job search later in life.

20130619_AskAmanda_Job_Application_Checklist_v2After you’ve determined the right job goals for your search and developed a resume to support them, it’s time to begin your job-search campaign. Below are tips on how to advertise your brand on and offline, as well as pursue opportunities through multiple channels.


In Jobvite's 2012 Social Recruiting Survey of 800+ HR professionals and recruiters in the US, it was found that 92 percent of employers and recruiters use social media sites such as Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn for recruiting. The survey reported that 73 percent of companies found a new hire through social media (the largest percentage – 89 percent – came through LinkedIn). This means the job seeker never even submitted an application – the employer or recruiter found them because of their online presence. In addition, 86 percent of recruiters admitted to reviewing candidates’ social network profiles – whether or not the candidates gave them that information.

Bottom line? If you’re not utilizing these channels to brand yourself and pursue opportunities, you’re missing out on a number of job leads that may not be published anywhere else. Building a strong online brand that supports your job goals, aligns with your resume and highlights your accomplishments and areas of expertise is imperative in today’s job market.

Topics: Ask Amanda, Networking, Personal Branding, Working with Recruiters, Job Application, Age and Your Job Search

In the job search & over 50: Part I of III

Posted by Amanda Augustine

12:36 AM

The first article in a three-part series on conducting a job search later in life. 

TheLadders_Combatting_Age_DiscriminationAs many of you mentioned in your comments on my previous article, not everyone who’s 50 years old or older has the luxury of an encore career.

Many job seekers need a full-time job with full-time pay, and are feeling the negative effects of a down economy. I’m not going to sugarcoat it – finding a job in general is more challenging than ever. Trying to find a new job later in life can be even more frustrating. Studies have shown that employees in their 50s or older are not only more likely to be laid off during hard economic times, but they’re also known to have longer periods of unemployment before they are able to re-enter the workforce. There are a number of factors at play here, including age discrimination.

It may not be fair, but it’s real — age discrimination is alive and well in today’s workplace. We could talk for hours how recruiters, hiring managers — society as a whole — should change their mind-set, but that isn’t going to help you land a job any faster. What we really need to discuss is what you can do to compete against other candidates — regardless of their age — in today’s job market.

Topics: Ask Amanda, Goal Setting, Resume, Age and Your Job Search

7 tips for starting a second career

Posted by Amanda Augustine

12:09 AM

What you need to know about pursuing an encore career later in life. [TWEET]


I am 65 and nowhere near ready to retire (physically and emotionally) but I need to find more meaningful work than I'm doing now. What's the best way to overcome the age issue when approaching potential employers? – J.F. of Annapolis, MD



I can’t tell you how many people I’ve spoken to recently who are looking for new opportunities later in life!

Do me a favor and Google the following term today: “encore career

An “encore career,” also called “recareering,” is defined as an employment transition made during the latter part of one’s career, typically to the social sector or a public-interest field, such as education, the environment, health care, government, social services or nonprofits.

Topics: Ask Amanda, Changing Careers, Age and Your Job Search

Job Search in Your 20s, 30s, 40s, 50s and 60s

Posted by Guest Contributor

02:01 PM

As you age, you will want to change the types of jobs you seek, the personal brand you introduce, even the way you present your resume.

By Debra Donston-Miller

090304resumemagnify3Whether you are 22 or 62, a job search may be in your future. But the 20-something's job search strategy should look very different than the 60-something's — and so should everyone's in between.

Especially in this economy, people of all ages are in the market for a new job. Some people are looking to improve their pay or title, some want to change their career paths and some have been involuntarily plunged into a job search due to downsizing. No matter what the catalyst, a job search should be carefully calculated and cultivated, with a great many factors taken into account. One of the most important, but often overlooked, is the impact the job seeker's age can and should have on the process.

Topics: New to the Workforce, Age and Your Job Search, Job Search Process

Acing a Job Interview After Age 50

Posted by Guest Contributor

08:00 AM

You're certainly qualified, but resting on your laurels won't cut it in an interview. Follow these guidelines to land that job at any age.

By Joe Turner


Have you used one of these common complaints?

  • "I was fully qualified, and it makes no sense.”
  • “They simply don’t know how to hire.”
  • “They told me that I was overqualified.”

These are the sort of comments job seekers often make to Randy Block, a seasoned career-transition coach and consultant in the San Francisco Bay area.

If you're an "older" job hunter, more than likely you already know that the ultra-competitive job-search process is especially hard on you. Part of the challenge you're facing is a major generation gap between Baby Boomer job hunters and the Gen-X hiring managers of today. As Block noted, "Thirty-somethings don’t want to hire their parents. Unfortunately, that's how we often come across — as their parents."

You can succeed during interviews with younger hiring managers, but you'll want to think and act differently. Here are five places to start :

Topics: Interview, Age and Your Job Search

Getting the Job When You're Overqualified

Posted by Guest Contributor

08:59 AM

Whether by choice or financial necessity, a growing number of senior executives are pursuing jobs with reduced salaries and titles. How can they convince hiring managers they’re serious about a smaller pond?

By Sean Gallagher


Earlier this decade, a movement called “downshifting” sprung up among older professionals who sought to simplify their lives and have more time for family, pet projects and personal fulfillment off the clock. Now, the recession has brought a whole new spin to downshifting. Senior-level professionals accustomed to high salaries have lowered the expectations they have for their next positions in hopes to just make ends meet.

Call it downshifting. Call it “re-careering.” It's a genuine phenomenon, regardless of whether it's voluntary or the child of necessity. More and more people over 50 are making career changes to new jobs in new industries, in full-time, part-time, and contract or self-employed positions.

In a buyer’s market, however, employers are much more exacting about finding the precise fit for their requirements. Getting in front of a hiring manager when you're clearly overqualified for the position requires some feats of repackaging.

Topics: Age and Your Job Search