Friday, January 23, 2015

The Job Hunt - Old Dogs and New Tricks

I have come to the conclusion that trying to find a job at the age of 55 is the most frustrating, convoluted, complicated, inane, and depressing task I have ever attempted. First - everything you have accomplished, all your skills, education, and 33 years of employment is boiled down to one single page of bullet points.

The whole world, short of the AARP, is telling you that reentering the job market in your fifties is damn near impossible. Our generation has been written off. If you have a job, hold on for dear life. Of course AARP touts that employees in their golden years (after age 50) offer the best skills and experience for employers looking for new hires. And for an easy $16 a month (or $21 that gives you "access to experts, tools, and resources that provide a holistic approach to brain health") you, too, can "turn your dreams and goals into real possibilities". The check is in the mail and I'll respect you in the morning - not!

I'm not cynical. The world has changed, the economy has changed, business has changed. We are going through what the world last experienced in the industrial revolution during the late 1700's when those who stayed on the farm found themselves left behind. Well, that is unless they embraced the new inventions brought on by the revolution, put them to work for themselves, and moved along with the "new" world.

The world is flat. The world is digital. It instant. It is young and evolving everyday. New graduates have no loyalty to an employer and having 4 employers on their resumes in 6 years is not an issue for them. They do not see jobs as dispensable, they see the world moving quickly and when a new opportunity comes, they do not fear jumping for it. Where as in our day, we clung to our positions out of loyalty often to the detriment of our future. But that was how we were raised reared. Don't rock the boat, think outside the box, or take a chance. We were but lemmings off the cliff, taking our destiny with us.

If we, in our golden years, are going to recapture our destiny, we need to gain the ear of someone and convince them that we have stepped out of our box, do not necessarily know more that they do, have an open mind, comfortably work in the digital age and have no insecurity with old dogs and new tricks. Somehow I do not feel like AARP agrees with me.

So now I just need to find someone willing to lend me their ear, convince them I have both a lot to bring to the table and am very open to new things. Basically, I am old dog ready to get off the porch and learn some new tricks. And who knows, maybe the young pups, some day, may want to learn an old trick or too. Only time will tell.

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