Overage, Overqualified and Unemployed?

I find myself in the ridiculous place of having too much knowledge and experience for some jobs in the workplace. Not only that but I'm apparently "TOO OLD"... employers aren't saying it but after a frustrated work search I have come to the conclusion that being overage and overqualified are definitely NOT working in my favor here. After 2 years of applying for various positions, going to various interviews I have decided that IT'S TIME TO FIGHT BACK!

What was once considered "wisdom and knowledge" can now be a liability in the workforce as competition become fierce and jobs are few. Although I don't consider myself over the hill and consider my experience as a positive, I've just go this itchy little feeling that my age and skill set are actually hurting me more than helping me. After a long and stressful night wrestling with my latest "thank-you but we feel you are not the right fit for the position" letdown...I have decided to put the ball back in my court, and yours, by offering up some advice for us "elderly" job seekers.

Source

Tips for older job hunters

After owing my own business for over 20 years, I have developed a keen sense of confidence. A confidence that I am afraid may be intimidating some of my interviewers, often 20 something hipsters who look like they just graduated from college. The first few times that I was interviewed by these younger people, I felt a profound sense of weirdness. After all, the tables had been turned. Years earlier it was me interviewing them for positions within our company (how's that for a role reversal, huh?)

First bit of advice for you if you are like me and preparing to interview

  1. Prepare yourself when you interview that the person interviewing you may resemble a younger version of your son or daughter (even quite possibly your grandchildren) It's becoming obvious that many younger people are holding the reins in management. If this happens to you, don't be surprised or put off...it's just the way that it is. Be pleasant and kind and don't come off as "all knowing". This young person might hold the key to you being hired or not. Be cool and collected but don't come off as condescending.
  2. Do not date yourself on your resume. Be careful what dates you put down for school and jobs. Dates on your resume may reflect your age and possibly be a strike against you (of course interviewers won't tell you this but that's the sad fact) Get yourself that interview by getting your foot in the door, then let your experience speak for itself. Employees are not supposed to discriminate based on age (but come on now, we know they sometimes do)
  3. Dress professional and hip for your interview. On the last big job interview I went on, I wore a trendy hip suit that made me look younger than I am (at least that's the feedback I got from my friends and family)
  4. You might even want to break out the hair die to give you a younger look (yeah I know you hate having to resort to these tactics - but looking a little younger certainly doesn't hurt your chances) It will give you a little lift and if you are really that married to your grey hair well then hey... stick with it.
  5. Think twice about putting down the fact that you owned a small business (if you did) I've been told by some people that owning a business may put you on the undesirable list. Prospective employers may feel that you have worked "independently for too long" and "may have trouble taking direction" (that's my take on it, anyway) I now put on my resume that I was the "manager" of our small business.
  6. I have found that many jobs that I would have been a good fit for usually ask for some technical software experience that I do not have. If you are well qualified and find that not knowing certain programs are holding you back from that dream job, it would probably be a good idea to go back to school and take some classes in things that those employers are looking for (a good example would be knowing Microsoft Word, I have even seen some driving jobs that require the driver to know these basic office programs)

My final thoughts as an "older" job seeker

And BTW, I think I may have blown my last job interview by nodding coolly when being asked questions at my interview (the questions were easy for me, and in retrospect the little nod I made may have been taken the wrong way - I was nodding good, I have a "great" answer but now I realize I should have kept that little nod to myself)

It's good to come across confident but not overly confident. I now wait for the interviewers to ask me the next question without offering too much information (It's a fine line coming off as prepared and confident as opposed to cocky and over-sure of ones self)

Poll on older workers in the workplace

As an older worker, do you feel you have been discriminated against when it comes to getting a job?

See results without voting

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Comments 197 comments

Mommymay profile image

Mommymay 3 years ago from Ohio

These are some great tips. I am a hospitality management recruiter and suggest the same things when working with my candidates. You are sooooo on the money with the business owner vs manager. I have never been successful when someone won't adjust the resume to manager...those who do---usually get hired! voted up!


Dorsi profile image

Dorsi 3 years ago from The San Francisco Bay Area Author

Thanks mommymay) It's good to know my thoughts about small business were correct. Thanks for that confirmation.


Jen Pearson profile image

Jen Pearson 3 years ago from Alabama

Some great insights here. I have recently faced the software issue and am in the process of getting up to speed on the MS office suite.

Interestingly, in a recent conversation about this problem on linkedin, many women brought up tweaking one's look and the men were baffled thinking it really only should matter if you're in a position, such as modeling, in which appearance is an inherent part of the position. Definitely an interesting gender split in perception. But then I also notice it's more women who complain about having reached an age barrier.


mpropp profile image

mpropp 3 years ago from Minnesota

Dorsi, what age do you consider to be "over-age" ? 40's, 50's or 60's? I'm just curious how much experience and/or grey hair we should be trying to cover up! This is a very interesting hub and luckily I haven't been out in the job market for a while, but with this economy you never know...that is why I am curious at what age the applicants might start having to consider this possible discrimination.


VirginiaLynne profile image

VirginiaLynne 3 years ago from United States

Terrific advice Dorsi. I had to take 5 years off working in order to care for my husband's parents, who had Alzheimers. When I decided to return to work, I realized that in certain possible jobs that I was considering my experience was a long way back, and some of the people who might have given me great recommendations were either retired or had passed away. Yikes! I was very lucky that when I contacted a former employer they offered me a chance to return to that part-time work. Good luck on your own job hunt.


Patty Inglish, MS profile image

Patty Inglish, MS 3 years ago from North America

Dorsi, you give good advice in ths article. Plus, if one is deficient in software programs that's a good thing to mention to the "What are weeaknesses" question - reply that one is working on increasing knowledge of the software programs and is making progress. I like to hear that when I am interviewing soneone.


onegoodwoman profile image

onegoodwoman 3 years ago from A small southern town

I hear your voice.............and I cringe, at the question..............what did you study in high school?..............

Oh, hell, you know, the mandatory ones........................reading, math, science....................

I have been the manager in charge of hiring................DO NOT bring "your posse".


Patty Inglish, MS profile image

Patty Inglish, MS 3 years ago from North America

YES! - Once, a job candidate brought random kids from her neighborhood too the interview.


Gypsy48 profile image

Gypsy48 3 years ago

Informative and helpful hub. Age shouldn't be a factor but it is certainly held against us when we are competing for a job in today's work force. Voted up and useful.


ElleBee 3 years ago

I am not in this category (or not all of them anyway - I can definitely qualify for underemployed)... but it sounds very frustrating. I recommend checking out your federal One Stop career center. Some have a specialist who works specifically with "mature workers" and tries to address some of the exact concerns you mentioned.


wileyspeaks profile image

wileyspeaks 3 years ago from Auburn, Indiana

I do agree with the over qualification, I wouldn't consider myself older but I have been on lots of job interviews and I have a really good work history, I have held jobs in upper management , in fact all my jobs have been in management. I have found that having kids is a strike as well, I mean that are not school age. I have daycare but for some reason that seems to be an issue that at the drop of a hat I can't come into work I have to get a sitter. Back to my qualifications, I'm now looking for a part-time job and I get comments all the time that I'm too overqualified for the position?? I just need a job to help with the household bills! Should I not put all my job history on my resume??


bookworm35 profile image

bookworm35 3 years ago from Jamaica

Another thing no one wants to talk about is the fact that better looking people get hired before the unattractive ones. I don't think employers will admit it but I believe they will definitely hire the attractive people over the others as long as they are both equally qualified for the job. Or maybe it's because the better looking you are, the more confidence you exude. Whatever the reason, it pays to be pretty!


UnknownAuthor72 profile image

UnknownAuthor72 3 years ago from USA

This is such a great and useful article. I really enjoy your writing style. I give you Kuddos for owning your own biz. I have found it difficult to find work because of the three years of not working. I tried to explain I was focusing on my writing career and this seems to make the person who is interviewing you, a little intimadated. What would you suggest on how to explain the reason for such a lengthy gap is because one was trying to write a successful novel? shared and thumb up! :)


Dorsi profile image

Dorsi 3 years ago from The San Francisco Bay Area Author

@Jen) Yes, I've found that most jobs now want people that are experienced in certain softwares. I am learning Excel from a friend - he borrowed a CD from the library and hooked it to a flat screen TV and computer to help me learn it...

@mp) I would say it may start for people in their 40's - I'm 54 and definitely think for baby boomers this job finding problem exists.


LAWluvinlife profile image

LAWluvinlife 3 years ago from New York City

What is considered 'older' now a days? I'm in my 30s (but everyone in my department seems younger than me...


vibesites profile image

vibesites 3 years ago from United States

Yes, that's pretty much the same question in my mind -- what is the "starting age" to be considered old in the workplace? I'm not in my 30s yet but it seems that hits the "old line".

Anyway, very insightful tips, I would like to keep that as reference the moment I hit my (pre-)middle-life crisis. Thank you. :)

Up, useful, shared and a following. :)


Oscarlites profile image

Oscarlites 3 years ago from Alabama

yeah.. plus at one employer before i left alaska, the recruiter/director, showed me two stackes of applications. he put his hand on my application in the smaller pile on the left. and his rigth hand on the other pile.. his words" I have to consider everyone on this other stack before I can even look at yours he said. " veteran preference, ethnic or black preference, female gender, disabled preference, and any other minority" . suddenly I felt like I was the discriminated. I one of the few, ( dwindling) job seekers who are white, middle age, and male. Yes. though it LOOKS like I have overqualifications, sometimes it is not really. once i get the job, I realize I needed much more, or different skills.. thanks for the hub! up!


Don Fairchild profile image

Don Fairchild 3 years ago from Belgrade, ME

Ah, this Hub hits close to home. I am now retired because of this discrimination discussed here.

I tried for many years to "fix" my over-qualification problem to no avail. I even resorted to stripping down my resume to look more like a worker-bee rather than a high paying professional. It didn't work because I suspect that now I look too old and maybe a bit too professional looking. (My tie gives me away, see my pic above)

Anyhow, I gave up and retired, now I write or fish when I feel like it.


KEAD profile image

KEAD 3 years ago from Dallas, Texas

Great hub and I have unfortunately seen age discrimination play out personally with a family member. Organizations are obviously careful on how they approach and have various strategies and tactics to keep them relatively safe from legal issues regarding this matter. It's only those with the real life work experience (which entails decades of worke experience) that can guide and mentor the upcoming ranks which in the end will provide the real value to the company.


Que Scout profile image

Que Scout 3 years ago from Sydney Australia

I figure if society does not want to hire over 50's then society can foot the bill. One more month of looking for a job and I will give up and go on unemployment benefits., file bankruptcy and supplement with my superannuation.

I was made redundant last month. I have averaged 1 interview per week since. I am upfront about my age by planting it on the first line of my personal description. The last thing I want is to waste time and effort going to interviews where a younger person is sort. If they want juniors then they want juniors and little will change their mind.


Don Fairchild profile image

Don Fairchild 3 years ago from Belgrade, ME

I delayed my layoff once during a corporate resizing binge that lasted many months, by commenting how your job wasn't safe in this company if you had gray hair. I noticed that my job stayed on until the end. Gee, go figure.


jaydene profile image

jaydene 3 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

I think there are many factors for older workers., and the Canadian gov't is pushing the retirement age further ahead, so that adds to the complications.

I am thinking the only way i can make it is starting my own business. and settling for less in the future, it looks like a hard reality to accept.

But it is where it is at. Very hard for those without secure pensions.


gettingitdone profile image

gettingitdone 3 years ago from Anytown USA

Great topic! I like how you also gave pointers and advice. Thank you for sharing!


kellysgirl profile image

kellysgirl 3 years ago from Atlanta, GA

Great article Doris. I'd like to say this, my husband always tells me, "Every mistake is not a disappointment." And when I read this type of article his wisdom pounces into my spirit.

I sincerely believe that what is for you, is for you and regardless of your age, skin color, religious background, or whichever demographic people use to separate applicants, if the job is meant for you, you'll have it.

As an HR professional, who has been recruiting for over 10 years, I hear the conversations in the back office with the hiring managers all the time. It's never a conversation of age, but more of the angst surrounding various competencies (or lack thereof) that are closely connected to a persons level of experience and maturity, which in a lot of minds equates to age.

Your tips are on point, there is no doubt about that. However, looking younger, isn't necessarily going to convince a hiring manager to view you differently if your conversation and abilities are not up to snuff.

And think about it like this, do you really WANT to work for an employer who chooses age over ability and experience, as well as good cultural fit (which is a topic that deserves more discussion)? I wouldn't. I have seen it too often, when people get into jobs based on things outside of what's most important (can they do the job), and then they wind up in my office, complaining that they don't 'fit' in. Or better still, the managers want to fire them after 2 months.

I say, count it all joy, because if this employer would rather have a young looking imitation of a great employee, then let them have it. Your experience is definitely needed and will be welcomed elsewhere.


Parks McCants profile image

Parks McCants 3 years ago from Eugene Oregon U.S.A.

Thank you. This article hits the interview nail on the head..


Dorsi profile image

Dorsi 3 years ago from The San Francisco Bay Area Author

@Virginia) I'm so glad you found a job. It was awesome that you could take care of them during that time of their lives - so important. God Bless you my friend.

@Patty) Thanks for coming by and thanks for that input. I like the way you put that. I will remember that.

@onegoofwoman) You are so right. I've seen women bring their babies to interviews. Not a good idea!

@Gypsy) Thank you!


mscott45 profile image

mscott45 3 years ago from UK

Great article. I have now omited 'business owner' from the information I send out and I keep my wage expectation low - at first! Prove yourself then start asking for more! If you are weak on computer skills, there are free resources online - even Microsoft's site can be useful. Alison.com is great for learning all sorts of things.


Esmeowl12 profile image

Esmeowl12 3 years ago from Sevierville, TN

Amen. Amen. Thanks.


Msmillar profile image

Msmillar 3 years ago from Valley Springs

You sound just like me! I feel your frustration! I also owned my own business's and it does seem like a strike against me. The age thing sticks in my mind all the time. I've taken to apply to jobs far below my abilitites just to get my foot in the door! I'm still unemployed after 2+ years. Hubpages is a good source for producing some sort of income, with my age and experience working in my favor for once!


Brad2001 profile image

Brad2001 3 years ago from Lewiston, New York

Unfortunately you are expressing some age discrimination against your younger counterparts. I am a 31 year old Ph.D, extremely over educated, and getting the same results, as a 'young person' being over educated often means you are egotistical and self entitled, and for some reason employers want youthful, malleable people to shape into their corporate brand identity. Anyone who thinks for themselves is a liability...being older, and over educated, and over experienced means you are too smart! too confident, not ready to cow tow and genuflect to your commanding officers. It goes both ways.


CR Rookwood profile image

CR Rookwood 3 years ago from Moonlight Maine

Great hub Dorsi. I will be 60 in March. After losing my job in finance during the 2008 meltdown, I had three consecutive part-time jobs for companies that also folded. I worked for a major retailer for a year and a half and was let go this past spring as pushing credit cards on people became all important and staffing the place less and less so.

Stick a fork in me. I live in MI and it's been ugly here for the past five years and not getting better. Took an early retirement and am focusing on writing, reading, learning to things I never had time for in the past. I'm OK with that, but I'd be in deep trouble if I was single.

I wanted to say that the 'ran my own business' thing does cut both ways. I've gotten interviews and gotten jobs because of referencing that, but I also put off one interviewer because of it too. None of these jobs pays very well so I decided to be friendly, be myself, tell the truth, have a sense of humor about it all. It worked OK but businesses keep failing and I'm tired. Thanks for the good info and know that I'm right there with ya! Pam :)


gmwilliams profile image

gmwilliams 3 years ago from the Greatest City In The World-New York City, New York

Excellent hub. Age is a double edged sword so to speak. It has its positive and negative factors. There are some employers who hire younger people over older persons because it is less expensive in terms of salaries and insurance. They also feel that younger employees are more malleable. They believe that the older employee is less malleable because of his/her extensive education and/or experience. Also, they believe that the older employee is overall more expensive. Conversely, there are many employers who hire older persons because of their maturity, extensive education/experience, and a better and more conscientious work ethic. It is all dependent upon the respective employer.


starstream profile image

starstream 3 years ago from Northern California

Maybe you should start another small business instead of job hunting!


Msmillar profile image

Msmillar 3 years ago from Valley Springs

??


Li Galo profile image

Li Galo 3 years ago from Mainly the USA but Sometimes Abroad

I am an older worker - in my 4th decade of life now! Most of the time, the kids... er, I mean 20-somethings think I AM 20-something, too! They invite me to social hour, bar hopping and their parties. I don't mind happy hour and bar hopping but I skip the house parties.

So, I dress young, I act young, I'm thin (lots of people think that means I don't have children) and I DO color my hair (great tip!). I keep a young hairstyle and sometimes a little professional cosmetic help goes a long, long way. I get laser once a year on my face to erase all sun spots and it also reduces eye bagging. That ONE thing can eliminate up to 10 years off your face! Getting your teeth whitened makes a difference in perception of age and youth, too. I leave the first 15 years of my adult work experience off the resume and let the interviewer think what they want to. When I job hunt hard, I usually land a job within 3 weeks. The whole "look" is just one step. Then there's the wardrobe. You have to dress different for different industries, too. So, it's not just dress young and hip. It's also dress for the industry you're applying to. I'm going to wear a conservative brown tweed that is fitted at the waist for a job in education. I'm going to wear a dark skirt suit with a frilly white blouse to a job in finance. I'm going to wear bright colors for a job it the art industry. So, it just depends. Accessories are important too. Personally, I leave the wedding band off. They may think I'm single and young but in the end, it's not their business if I'm married anyway. So, let them think what they want... It's not like they are allowed to ask. Looking single means they won't be concerned that I can't travel when the company needs me to. I don't want there to be a doubt in their mind that I can take the job I'm interviewing for. Let's not forget the importance of shoes... Well, then again, don't get me started on shoes!


Dorsi profile image

Dorsi 3 years ago from The San Francisco Bay Area Author

Wow this hub has certainly hit a nerve among many of us - there are so many great suggestions and questions here. I will comment on everyone's post, it's just slow going because I didn't really expect this much feedback! I have actually found part-time work after I started writing this hub but am still "under-employed" (and I guess that's another hub, huh?)

@ElleBee) Thanks for bringing up the career center, I go there often. It is a GREAT resource!

@wileyspeaks) Great question Wiley. I tend to think it would be best to make another resume where you downplay your experience and use that one for those part-time jobs - what does everyone else think?


Ewent profile image

Ewent 3 years ago from Old Bridge, New Jersey

I had a wonderful female mentor in 1980. Practically everything I know about business came from her tutelage. She was an outstanding business owner, former NJAWBO and Chamber of Commerce president and former umbudswoman to the SBA under President Carter. If there was one issue she was insistent on, it's that age doesn't have to limit abilities. Part of her business was management consulting and executive search. I learned that employment is an ever-reaching set of steps on a ladder of success and employment doesn't always mean working for someone else. Most older men and women overlook the enormous value of their experience and skills, even in this hi-tech age. There simply is no substitute for experience. She always advised those who felt they were maxed out career wise to look to mentoring. Entry level college students need a bit of mentoring to help them smooth over their rough edges in a new position. It's the framework of mentoring, not the specifics of a job discipline that rank mentors as the most valuable asset a younger employee can have. If you have been in a field like engineering, chemistry or finance, colleges online and off look to this type of mentoring experience. You may have to begin as a special course instructor until the value of your mentoring skills attract enough of a student following.


T4an profile image

T4an 3 years ago from Toronto, Ontario

Very good hub. Voted up. I have been working at the same company for 32 years and thought of having to go for an interview and start all over again is terrifying. Good luck, I hope you find the job of your dreams.


LauraD093 profile image

LauraD093 3 years ago from Pittsburgh PA

Loved this hub and can really relate-you have some great tips here. I haven't worked steady outside of temp work in quite some time. I do get the positions full time but as soon as the regular employee is back ...boom I'm out of there and on to the next temp position. It has been frustrating but it has kept me up to speed on newer programming and varied office techniques etc.


WriteAngled profile image

WriteAngled 3 years ago from Treorci, Cymru

When I was in my mid-40s and still in employment, I decided I would not let this scenario happen to me. I did not wish ever to be forced into a situation of having to downsell myself to some ignorant young upstart with minimal educational qualifications just so that s/he would not deny me a job because of feeling intimidated.

Very slowly, I started gaining various skills and trying different kinds of home-based business activities. I called it my "Free before Fifty" campaign. Happily, I found myself really enjoying medical translation, which makes use of the knowledge and experience gained in my PhD studies and many years of work experience. Whenever it became difficult to come home from work and translate through most of the night to meet my freelance deadlines, I would repeat to myself, "free before 50".

I turned fulltime freelance, working through my own company on 1 January 2004, about six weeks before I turned 50 :) and have never looked back.


Gail Meyers profile image

Gail Meyers 3 years ago from United States

This is an interesting hub. I am not currently having any issues in this area, but I can relate to it. In 2007, when the recession really hit, for the first time in my life I spent more than two weeks looking for a job. In fact, I spent several months and was repeatedly told I was over qualified. There is nothing quite like spending years of effort and thousands of dollars so you can be told you are over qualified!


lesliebyars profile image

lesliebyars 3 years ago from Alabama

I am sorry that you are having problems finding a job. I know that this can really effect your psyche as far as your self confidence. I was laid off about a year ago and it was a hard road back to employment. Good luck in your search.


Anne McKenna profile image

Anne McKenna 3 years ago

I agree with the comments posted here. I think it is the same in the UK. I would point out that a lot of interviews I have been to have been very low standard ones that reveal to me that I probably wouldn't want to work there anyway. I had one interviewer that tried to interview two of us candidates together--I walked out of that one. Another couple of interviews have resulted in arguments amongst the interviewers which I find both embarrassing and unprofessional. I hope I am never desperate enough to have to want to work for employers like that.


Jools99 profile image

Jools99 3 years ago from North-East UK

Interesting hub Dori. I am currently out of work (by choice) but have wondered how I would fare now if I started looking for work. I am 50 later this year, a graduate with 34 working years behind me. I've professionally developed over the years, kept up with technology etc and still feel that I have a lot to offer but I am sure I would have similar experiences to the ones you describe here. I think persistence will pay off for you in the end but I understand your annoyance - you have a lot to offer. Sometimes, it is best to have the attitude 'it's their loss' when you don't get offered the job.


CASE1WORKER profile image

CASE1WORKER 3 years ago from UNITED KINGDOM

I had discrimination another way- an agency sent me for a job purely because they like ladies 50+ the problem was I look 40+ and they did not like that- actually the job was really boring as well so good job that I did not get it- I hung on and got a job that paid £5k more!


aida-garcia profile image

aida-garcia 3 years ago from Anaheim, CA 92801

I was really impressed with your writing and the subject was right on time with my situation and I am sure many others. I attended a seminar just recently and I found myself looking at about 50 other people around my age in the same predicament. They were talented older people with a lot of experience in one room and I told someone next to me. Isn't it odd we are all the same age and having trouble finding positions? You have hit the nail on the head with this writing.


Jeannieinabottle profile image

Jeannieinabottle 3 years ago from Baltimore, MD

This is all really useful information. I think when a job seeker is older, most companies don't want to pay you what you are worth, too. That is the issue I am seeing. Younger people who don't have any experience will work for a much lower salary than someone with years of experience. I've found I am passed over for people younger than me all the time because they will do what I do, but for much less. Sure, they are not as good at it, but many companies don't care. It is all about saving a little money at the end of the day rather than quality.

Great hub and voted up!


xstatic profile image

xstatic 3 years ago from Eugene, Oregon

Well done and well written. There is no doubt in my mind that age discrimination abides in the US, despite being agains the law.


emilybee profile image

emilybee 3 years ago

I enjoyed your hub even though I'm not ''elderly" yet ;) However, I am in the job market too. My most recent interview the woman interviewing me told me she had had many applicants who were way, way, way over qualified, and many who were way under, and she thought I was right in the middle, which is good for that position, but other positions I'm way under qualified for. It's tough to figure out where you are for a specific position and to cater your resume to meet that. I agree with your head nod advice, I think I nod too much when I'm confident in an answer too :)


GusTheRedneck profile image

GusTheRedneck 3 years ago from USA

Howdy Dorsi - You will get no arguments from me about the content of your excellent article here, nor would I fuss about the things that commentors had to offer either. All I can do is to tell you of my own experiences in the hiring line after that rather infamous age point - 50 years on the planet.

Having gotten tired of fighting and scrapping along at running my own business, I decided to get a job - much easier thought I. I had just passed my 60th birthday. I interviewed with a small business owner who was having a tough time of things because he was without competent workers. I mentioned my age to him and asked if that posed a problem for him. He told me that it was a plus - he was tired of the smarty-pants younger employees and believed that I'd be far more stable a worker. The pay was great, he was honest, and I was made happy. My next job came about because his company was sold and the new owners didn't go for "old age employees" who were already drawing social security checks. So I hit the classifieds, found a likely spot, applied, and at age-65 got another new job. This one sent me by myself here and there, coast-to-coast, around the country, doing the boss's bidding very nicely, thank you. The pay was even better than the prior job, but, as things go these days, the company had to stop doing the tasks I had taken on for them - it was a government decision to stop paying them for that sort of thing. So, there I was, now just 70 years old and having to find another job. I reverted skills by offering a skill that I had learned back when I was in my 20's. I applied to do that sort of work at a nearby medical center. The personnel folks there put me off and put me off. Finally, I sat down in their office and refused to leave until they set me up for an interview with the person who would be my boss if ever I was hired. She was curious about my background - certainly to be expected, right? She asked me when was the last time I had performed the job's tasks in a hospital. I told her "1965." and here we were into year-2001. She gulped a couple of times and asked me if I thought I would be able to "catch up on things." I was hired. Got a nice pay raise every year, too. When I quit (due to "old age - 76") in 2007, she told me, "When I hired you they laughed at me. Within a year I had "bragging rights."

I will be at age 82 in several months. If I wanted to, I'd go out and get another good job. I have enough to do already, so there are not enough hours in the day for that, but age has little or nothing to do with what a person can handle other than the mental and physical declines that go with age. At 82 I can't work like a youngster can work in a warehouse or as a truckdriver, or even as a checkout cashier in the store where you have to stand on your feet all day, but outside of things like that, any boss who passes up an opportunity to hire me is going to lose. That's my attitude. That's the attitude a person needs to have if they want a job.

I don't mean to make light of the complaints voiced by those without jobs. When you are tired of complaining, go out and get one. Start out at the bottom if you must, but if you are worth a penny, you'll soon rise to the nickel class, and eventually be getting top dollar for whatever you are worth as an employee.

Gus :-)))


Dorsi profile image

Dorsi 3 years ago from The San Francisco Bay Area Author

@bookworm35) Unfortunately book, I think you could be right. It may "pay" to be pretty. Sad but probably true.

@LAWluvinlife) I'm pretty much referring to the over 50 crowd. although I could imagine some 40 somethings may experience some job discrimination also.

@vibesites) I'm pretty much referring to us "over 50" crowd. Thanks for coming by.

@UnknownAuthor72) Thank you for the kind compliment. I think I would say I was "self-employed" during those times and not go into detail on the resume. Just perhaps "editing and proofreading" or something to the effect as to what you were doing. Just my 2 cents on that. Best of luck.

@Oscarlites) I am Caucasian, over 50 and a female. I definitely feel I am in the "minority" but according to federal laws (as far as I know) I am not.


Dorsi profile image

Dorsi 3 years ago from The San Francisco Bay Area Author

@Don Fairchild) I wish I could afford to retire right now, I thought by this time of this year that I would have been earning an almost full-time living here at HubPages, but alas the Google Panda and Penguin changed all that...now I have to re-think everything again. I was almost half-way there last year and then poof! My readership went from 5,000 a day to about 500 a day. Gone overnight practically!

@KEAD) Exactly! It taked leaders with experience and wisdom to lead, and it's us "older" folks who usually have that life experience!

@jaydene) What is the retirement age in Canada? I'm also playing around with the idea of starting another business too....

@Que Scout) I am beginning to wonder, with so many baby boomers that are able and want to work, how will this play out? Perhaps the federal government should start giving businesses breaks for hiring "older" workers, like they do for hiring disabled, veterans and minorities? Otherwise, what will the government end up doing with all of us?

@Don Fairchild) hahaha good for you Don!


Green Art profile image

Green Art 3 years ago

Great advice here that I will keep in mind when I attempt to join the work force again. I've taken care of my grandson over the past 4 years but he'll be starting kindergarten in the fall freeing up some of my time. I know it isn't going to be easy, but your suggestions give me hope. Voted Up and Useful!


B. Leekley profile image

B. Leekley 3 years ago from Kalamazoo, Michigan, USA

Since I was younger than half as old as my present age of 70, I have come up against the problems of ageism and of the bind of being caught between under qualified for some jobs [minimum 10 years professional level experience and two graduate degrees and proficiency in three foreign languages preferred] and over qualified for other jobs [high school diploma or equivalent preferred]. I was in between. Luckily I inherited a small business that supported me for 27 years, until the Internet made it obsolete. Now I'm back in the bind, except I'm older and jobs are fewer -- permanently because of computerization. I don't know the solution, for me or in general. Hubbing? For me, not a money maker yet. Ever?


tammyswallow profile image

tammyswallow 3 years ago from North Carolina

I am approaching 40 and I am finally experiencing this. Things were MUCH different when I was 20ish and very thin. People used to ask me to work for them and I wasn't even looking. Great advice!


truthfornow profile image

truthfornow 3 years ago from New Orleans, LA

There are many forms of discrimination out there when you are looking to get hired, especially when times are hard and everyone is competing for one job. Sometimes I think the employers are looking to just hire mirror images of themselves. Good job with your pointers. I have the opposite problem ~ I am going on forty but don't look it. My voice is even worse. People call the office and when I ask, they ask to speak to my mom. Really annoying. It is bad that we are all judged by superficial things instead of who we are and what we can do.


Dorsi profile image

Dorsi 3 years ago from The San Francisco Bay Area Author

@gettingitdone) Thanks and I appreciate you coming by!

@Esmeowl12) And I add another AMEN to that one! Thanks for reading and the comment.

@Msmillar) There is definitely money to made on the internet sharing our experiences through writing about them. It's finding those niches and how to market ourselves that will determine how much we make though.... all involving yet another learning curve...sigh...


Dorsi profile image

Dorsi 3 years ago from The San Francisco Bay Area Author

@kellysgirl) Thank you Kelly for your reassuring words and some insight into "insider knowledge". I do have to say, I am working part time now, but still "under-employed", however, my new boss highly values me and constantly shows me her appreciation, which in turn does definitely make me feel valued and appreciated. She is in her 30's.

@Parks McCants) Thank you Parks.

@mscott45) Thanks for sharing and your info on those sites. All this informations is so helpful for all of us.

@Brad2001) This is true Brad. Thanks for sharing the "other side of the coin"

@CR Rookwood) Thanks for sharing your experiences CR. I'm certainly with you on the "tired" part. It sounds like we should all start a business together with all this combined knowledge!


newusedcarssacram profile image

newusedcarssacram 3 years ago from Sacramento, CA, U.S.A

Hi Dorsi,

I really liked your post. Thanks for sharing your knowledge and experience with us.


ftclick profile image

ftclick 3 years ago

Good tips. manager vs owner is great tip. Yeah, the hair dye can do wonders for that bit of grey. And do not go into memorable sports games from 20 years ago if they ask you a personal question.


bizna profile image

bizna 3 years ago from NAIROBI - KENYA

How old is old really? This is a nice hub even for middle aged people like myself since we are all growing older. Thank you for sharing this.


B. Leekley profile image

B. Leekley 3 years ago from Kalamazoo, Michigan, USA

Some comments asked at what age does ageism begin. That is relative to the situation. If you have a graduate degree and some professional experience and are in your 30s and try to get an entry level minimum wage job to tide you over till something comes open in your field and your competition is kids just out of high school or still in high school or still in college, then the manager doing the hiring might wonder how long before you quit to take a better job.

A few years ago I did get hired as a part-time dishwasher and cleaner in a nice restaurant in a university town. It helped that I was friends with the owners and a regular customer. They figured I would be a calming influence on the university kids working in the kitchen. After a few years I no longer had the stamina for that work, and they trained me as a bread baker.

Another factor is the image an owner wants. One restaurant or tavern might have a wait staff that is 100% young and pretty while another will hire the middle-aged.

I have a relation who is a movie scriptwriter, and he says ageism happens in that business because the producers and studios want to appeal to a young audience and figure young writers are more likely to click with that audience even though less experienced at the craft of screenwriting than older writers.

In some professions, being young is not better. When I was in library school in the late 60s, a young woman in my class dyed her hair gray. When one of my brothers first started teaching in a university, he grew a goatee to look older.

Another factor might be that, other factors being equal, someone hiring might prefer to give a job to someone with children at home than to someone younger or older than the child rearing years.

At one time long ago I worked in a typing pool for low pay. The top managers were all middle-aged men; the department heads were all beautiful, tall women in their 30s and 40s; the lowly workers were mostly a combination of women in their 50s going to work for their first time in decades and young women getting one of their first jobs. What are the odds that that pattern was coincidental?


Dorsi profile image

Dorsi 3 years ago from The San Francisco Bay Area Author

@gmwilliams) Thank you for your sound outlook on what factors go into the hiring process.

@starstream) I've been thinking about that Star. It's another option.

@Li Galo) Lot's of great ideas Li. Thanks for your input.

@Ewent) Mentoring is a great idea. I had not thought of that. Glad you had one that helped you in your life - that is so important!

@T4an) Thanks and glad to hear there are still some people that have managed to have a long-term job like you have. Awesome!

@LauraD093) That's good that those temp jobs have at least given you some more experience with programs. Lots of employers like that.

@WriteAngled) That is wonderful. I love that idea "free before 50". Maybe I can tell myself something similar but with the "60" number....

@Gail Meyers) I know, job searching is stressful! Thank you for the comment.

@lesliebyars) Thank you Leslie and congrats on landing a job.

@Anne McKenna) Agreed Anne!

@Jools99) Thanks Jools, that's a good point - that's what my son said too.

@CASE1WORKER) Very interesting Case. Glad you found a better fit plus more money!

@aida-garcia) Thanks Aida. I think we need to start some type of movement around this issue! Looks like alot of us are in the same boat!


Engr profile image

Engr 3 years ago

this is really nice and useful for everyone .i will try keep this in my mind.may be it will help me after 30 year. because on that time i will be enough old.thank you very much.


Kathleen Cochran profile image

Kathleen Cochran 3 years ago from Atlanta, Georgia

I've had interviews with people who have a look about them that screams "I'm not hiring my mother!" What I think it often comes down to is they aren't about to hire someone who might know more than they do. Your suggestions are good, but I think we need a few successful age discrimination law suits to turn the tide. People are living longer and having to work longer (or want to) and not considering anyone over 40 is -above all- stupid.

"Sometimes I think the employers are looking to just hire mirror images of themselves." This is an excellent observation and true more often than not I believe.


Lauhulu profile image

Lauhulu 3 years ago from Hawaii, United States

I like this article. It caught my eye because I just found out last Friday that I was "staff reduced." Rewriting my resume now!


Dorsi profile image

Dorsi 3 years ago from The San Francisco Bay Area Author

@Jeannieinabottle) Thank you Jeanie. You bring up some really good points - for some companies it's all about the money...

@xstatic) I agree x. Thanks for coming by.

@emilybee) Thanks emily and I guess we have to watch those "nods" huh?

@GusTheRedneck) Gus - I LOVE your story. You are such a great example of "never giving up!" (one of my dads favorite sayings) THANK YOU so much for contributing to this interesting thread!


mehdiservina 3 years ago

NICE,its true that averaged people are the victims of employment,one of the main reason,which was written in a book i read recently.

its because companies need to spend lots of on training and an average age person has low ability to grasps new things compared to an teenager.

plus there's lots of compensation to be paid if an accident happen to an elderly,they might not be eligible to work again,a young person most of the time recover quickly from injuries.


Crispy Mom profile image

Crispy Mom 3 years ago

With a HR background, I always knew that age discrimination existed. Sure it is illegal but there are always ways to hide it. What I never thought I would see is a 38 yr old male who was considered too "experienced and educated". Unfortunately, I am witnessing first hand as my husband embraces his 2nd unemployment in 4 years. It is becoming clear that there is an acceptable wage and anyone who has excessive years of experience or education that would warrant a salary beyond this acceptable wage is deemed a flight risk and thus non hireable. So much for the American Dream.


Ninasvoice profile image

Ninasvoice 3 years ago from England

Great hub. I'm 27 and when I was 26 i got told was too old for a job. In England when u are over the the of 25 the minimum wage increases. This means that employers will always take on teenagers, because they can pay them alot less money than someone that is 25 or over. This is not fair, the employer will always choose the save money option by employing somebody younger. So this isn't giving the 25 and overs much of a chance.


Ewent profile image

Ewent 3 years ago from Old Bridge, New Jersey

As a former office manager, I can tell you the long list of excuses employers use to not hire certain workers. One company I worked for used a "code" to indicate hire-ability. The code included age, gender, education (degreed/non-degreed) and race. This was before the advent of EEO/AAF. This code was placed on the back of the employment application and then the pile of applications were sorted according to these code prerequisites. During interviews, those who were considered for hire were often asked questions that today would be illegal. Yet, there are entire study courses the HRD staff are taught to extract the right answers to questions they know are not always legal to ask. The problem most potential job seekers overlook is the garden variety excuses employers use to mask what they believe may be potentially "expensive" employees. Those with bad credit, existing health problems or histories of job loss. Heaven help you if ever you've filed a complaint against an employer with your state or federal labor board. These employers use "overqualified" or "underqualified" or a host of other excuses to avoid hiring. These tactics are intended to stack the cards against job seekers.


donotfear profile image

donotfear 3 years ago from The Boondocks

Boy oh boy, do I ever know where you are coming from! I'm in the same boat! However, I was able to obtain employment, but not in my God given field. Making much much less salary than I did for 5 years in my chosen field. But the good thing is that I was able to implement my transferable skills and long background in another area that worked in my favor. Great contribution with this article!


PK Taylor 3 years ago

My husbands company folded and he has been searching for a year for a new job. Your article articulated exactly what he's been going through. It is very frustrating. We feel he must create a start up company to generate income. He has heard the same thing from many potential employers. He has grey hair and very over qualified for most positions. It's lonely at the top (and bottom).


mitowrite profile image

mitowrite 3 years ago from Austin, Texas,USA

I don't know why or how people can be so blinded when it comes to hiring someone with great work experience. I agree, older and overqualified definitely makes it harder for you in the job industry. But what I also don't understand is why it is the same for recent grads (in some industries, and for me it's what I've seen in many creative industry jobs). Companies set the bar inexcusably high at times. Is it because they don't want to hire anyone who isn't already working for their company, or is it because they don't know what they want?


Nish09 profile image

Nish09 3 years ago

I am new here to this whole community. LOL, this article nails on the head WHY I am here. I don't consider myself over the hill, but I am close. I believe my problem is too much education. All I ever heard was to go to college to get a better job. It seems like after each degree I end up with a worse job than the one before. Now as I pay on my student loans I'm acutally omitting my precious education from my resumes! ARGHHH! I just want to put on my cover letter: Yes, I am overqualified. There is a reason I am applying to this position. I'll remember my role here, don't worry! -Thanks for sharing.


MarleneB profile image

MarleneB 3 years ago from Northern California, USA

I was in your exact position about four years ago. But, when I first started interviewing after a massive company "right size" endeavor. I found myself feeling like I was worthless in my old age. I finally gave up looking for a job and retired early. Tip #3 and #4 are really helpful. A lot of us old-timers feel like we should be able to be who we are, but like you have shared, it is the younger people looking at us now and to get our foot in the door we need to appear more trendy and get rid of the grey hair. These are all wonderful tips. Thank you for sharing them.


Beyond-Politics profile image

Beyond-Politics 3 years ago from The Known Universe (beyond.the.spectrum@gmail.com)

Great advice. This is a topic that I've touched on on my own blog on some level (http://hubpages.com/business/Employers_Shut_Up_And... and http://beyond-politics.hubpages.com/hub/EmployersS... What's needed (and what's missing) is reason and common sense on the part of employers!


xstatic profile image

xstatic 3 years ago from Eugene, Oregon

I see from the myriad comments that this Hub hit home, hit lotsa nerves too. I suppose I am over the hill, on Social Security, yet I am fully able to work, physically and mentally. One year later, still unemployed, one interview. My wife works from home, remotely, now trying two jobs, makes me feel as if I need to do more than cook and clean.


Teencity 3 years ago

Oh my, how very, very true. The older I become, the harder it is in the work place, as well as in the dating world. What is going on? Is it me or is it the rest of the world? Hence, turning to online work, work from home, to fill the gaps while I re-build teencityproductions. Let us not add a messy divorce on top of the issue and wow, one feels the walls closing in.

The one thing I don't do is act young. I am in fairly good shape, this I know. I am pretty fit from years of being active. I dress age appropriate, but don't look for long skirts covering everything God gave me. After all, I am still dating. Like Mother Like Daughter, Mother's nickname was Ms. Clairol


Anna Haven profile image

Anna Haven 3 years ago from Scotland

Really enjoyed reading your article, absolutely true. Everything should be based on the individual's skills and age should not even be taken into the equation.


extranotes profile image

extranotes 3 years ago from New York

Welcome to the club!

(Don't feel bad... it's not you, it's the economy.)


writeframeofmind 3 years ago

They should hire more people. Age is not a factor. Heck you can be 75 and still work at a factory making blue jeans or at a food processing plant. But at the same time the pay needs to be a whole lot better. I don't understand why the companies make these millions upon millions or billions of dollars and want to pay them bread crumbs. The less you pay someone to do the work, the less that the company will survive (although you can be replaced) It's time to start reconsidering how we treat our employees if we want this country to be rebuilt as far as jobs .


Sana Ratio profile image

Sana Ratio 3 years ago from Reading, England

Useful tips and to me these tips can be used for any age of unemployed people. Great hub


Emmanuel Kariuki profile image

Emmanuel Kariuki 3 years ago from Nairobi, Kenya

Great tips - you can tell just from the mile long comments. I overheard a young manager saying that he wouldn't hire anyone older than himself (regardless of experience!) so I am taking heed of your advice in total. I would add that the resume (or CV) should edit out qualifications that are not relevant to a specific job interview to reduce the "overqualification" view- Shared!


Cyndi10 profile image

Cyndi10 3 years ago from Georgia

Wow! I can't add much more than what others have already said. It feels like a topsy-turvy world when it comes to hiring in the workplace these days. Don't even think about trying to change fields unless you do go back to school and then...well, age happens. When I was younger, I only had to worry about race.

If I can figure out that pay raise here, I would have no worries! LOL.

Very relevant article and so well done. Sharing.


Ewent profile image

Ewent 3 years ago from Old Bridge, New Jersey

Cyndi...The only employer you can rely on or trust is you. That's why so many women young and old alike are going the entrepreneur route. Just be sure to set a network in place. It's an invaluable source of new clients and vendors. If there is one thing women today cannot afford the luxury of falling prey to, it's lack of self-confidence. Women need to be certain of their levels of self-esteem and act from that base. It's how some women rise to formerly unimaginable heights of success.


Hezekiah profile image

Hezekiah 3 years ago from Japan

Nice hub, In Japan a lot of men go for the comb over or Katsura "Toupe" to try and look younger. Not always good though.


Nell Rose profile image

Nell Rose 3 years ago from England

I was doing the nod all the way through this! lol! I totally understand what you mean, I have worked in offices for over thirty years, straight out of school, onto the pc and away. I have been in charge of three pcs at a time, the post, meetings and just about everything else I could juggle with, then I got made redundant but the boy of 20 stayed on! now its so difficult to get back into it, I see kids in the office who would think I was their gran! don't give up I say, well not yet anyway! lol!


Robert Erich profile image

Robert Erich 3 years ago from California

As this long list of comments reveals, this article has hit a spot with many people. Although I am in my mid twenties, I have actually had, and spoken with, several people who have had a similar problem - too much education or not enough experience.

It seems like most jobs want someone who has a degree and 3-4 years of experience OR doesn't have a degree. It's such a pain trying to convince someone that you are qualified or that you are willing to work in a "lower" position. Thanks for the article and good luck with the job hunt!


Jenn-Anne profile image

Jenn-Anne 3 years ago

Interesting hub! A lot of people are in the same boat. Fortunately there are some companies out there who value older, more experienced workers. I started a new job last summer after being unemployed for awhile. The entire team I'm working with is new and most of us are older and were downsized out of a previous jobs. I'm making less but there are other perks (great benefits). Ultimately there needs to be a greater focus on job creation in this country before things will get better. Best of luck to you - hope you find a great new job soon!


cartondamage profile image

cartondamage 3 years ago from America the Beautiful

I can understand the frustration, but stay determined. I am a hiring manager and my first (unspoken) criteria is to find mature employees. And I consider mature to be 55 or older, 60 being the benchmark. It doesn't take much to realize the value of the older employee's work ethic. And no babysitter problems, no sick kids to pickup at daycare, no conflicts with soccer games. I recommend being yourself. I do not appreciate hiring a person whose personality fits the position only to find that a completely different person shows up on the first day.


LongTimeMother profile image

LongTimeMother 3 years ago from Australia

The Australian government launched a new initiative a couple of weeks ago. They are offering businesses $1,000 if they hire someone over 50 and keep them employed for at least 3 months. Remains to be seen how many businesses have a high turn over of older workers, seeking more benefits. Step in the right direction though.


Dorsi profile image

Dorsi 3 years ago from The San Francisco Bay Area Author

@Green Art) Thank you Green.

@B. Leekley) I feel your pain B. I thought I would be making enough money from HubPages by this time this year to have a comfortable full-time living. I had 5,000 page views a day and was starting to pull in $500-$700 a month at the beginning of last year. Then Google Panda and the Penguin hit and my views sank to about 500 page views a day. So I need to re-evaluate my online writing once again. Which goes to show don't put all your eggs in one basket.... I now am working 3 part-time jobs and at least have some income...


Scent profile image

Scent 3 years ago from Berwick, PA

I just learned something LoL thank you... Question; I was an Independent Distributor which we labeled as Business Owner. What do I do with that?

I see they always look at the dates on my resume and if I don't include the dates, I am asked why.


Dorsi profile image

Dorsi 3 years ago from The San Francisco Bay Area Author

@tammyswallow) Sorry to hear that. I too never had a problem getting a job in my twenties. Best of luck to you.

@truthfornow) So true Truth. There are many other things that workers can be discriminated against, but they will never let on because it is against the law.

@newusedcarssacram) Your welcome. Thanks for stopping by.

@ftclick) Yes I think manager is still professional but not as intimidating as "owner". And yes it's best to talk about up to date things!

@bizna) Your welcome Bizna. I'd say age discrimination could start in the 40's?

@B. Leekley) I would say those were not "coincidences". And your right about different ages for certain types of jobs. I am finding that my age is actually working to my advantage in getting art teaching jobs.


nextchapter profile image

nextchapter 3 years ago from NC

Great article, well written - and the length was appropriate. I can certainly relate to what you said - I am 52, owned my own business for 20 years, and have been job-hunting for 14 months now.

The tip about seeking education on current computer programs, was one that I've certainly felt a need for!


Dorsi profile image

Dorsi 3 years ago from The San Francisco Bay Area Author

@Engr) Your welcome Engr!

@Kathleen Cochran) AGhHH...or in some of our cases "I'm not hiring my grandmother!" Good observations Kathleen!

@Lauhulu) I guess that's just a more professional way of saying "Your laid off", huh? Thanks Lau for coming by!

@mehdiservina) Good observations meh, thanks for reading.

@Crispy Mom) I'm sorry Crispy, so much for higher education, huh?

@Ninasvoice) Oh wow Nina I had no idea that was the case in England. That's not good.


Pool Of Thoughts profile image

Pool Of Thoughts 3 years ago from Southern Ohio

Well, I can definitely agree with your tips. If you are overweight I'm sure that doesn't help your odds either. Over 40, over weight, and over qualified... Hmmmm Yet, somehow all you hear on the news is how great the unemployment rate is. I don't think they realize that its because everyone's unemployment compensation ran out. They didn't find jobs, they lost their benefits while hunting for jobs...


kaiyan717 profile image

kaiyan717 3 years ago from West Virginia

I cannot comment on the age, however I have been told sometimes it is best to dumb down your application, more or less to stave off claims of over qualification. I have several college degrees, yet I only claim the ones that are relevant. I too have worked as an entrepeneur for many years and I hope this does not look negatively on me when I reenter the work force next year with a new career. Also instead of using dates, you could put on your resume just the length of employment. I wish you luck and I hope you can find the perfect job soon!


MayG profile image

MayG 3 years ago from Melbourne, Australia

Great hub. Sometimes I toy with the idea of going back to work when the kids are older, even if it's just something part time, but then I kind of think - who will hire me when I've been out of the workforce for 12 years raising children? Seems like my qualms are justified after reading your hub and the comments above.

Having said that, my mum decided after 20 years of nursing that she'd had enough. So, in her 40's she went to a TAFE (like a community college), trained as a PA and was never unemployed. I think it depends on the job, but sometimes age and experience can be highly valued.


ExoticHippieQueen 3 years ago

I am now seeing that my age is working against me. Certain jobs intimidate me, as I realize I will be working with people much younger, and possibly faster than me. I remember myself discriminating somewhat against older people in certain jobs, and now the tables are turned. That's karma for you! I am young for my age, and am in good shape to run around but not exactly like a tireless 20 year old in a waitress job for instance. I have been through lists of possible job ideas, and many just will not suit me now at this point in my life. It's a headache for sure. Thanks for this useful hub.


johnakc profile image

johnakc 3 years ago from New Delhi

It is really a big problem for older emplyoyees. Your nice tips will help such people in getting what they deserve.

Nice Hub Dorsi.


keirnanholland profile image

keirnanholland 3 years ago from nowhere

There has been articles talking about age discrimination occuring in all of silicon valley, mainly facebook never hires anyone over 40, nor does Google.. I think if you really want to stick it to them in a class action lawsuit all you need to do is to see if the people in their organization are not random enough in age, take a head count, if most people are under the age of 30, get a lawyer and take them to court or contact the better business bureau? I mean if you got a company with 100-200 people and there is no 40+ yo people, experience isn't issue, it's age.. Another reason they don't like hiring older people, older people are harder to abuse, they know where their boundaries are, young people have no boundaries, you can push them over the line, make them work 80 hour weeks.. In that case, you probably would want to look somewhere else for a job unless the pay is good.


keirnanholland profile image

keirnanholland 3 years ago from nowhere


keirnanholland profile image

keirnanholland 3 years ago from nowhere

What we 40+ guys should do is start a company where we only hire people over the age of 40.. I doubt a 20 something would go looking for a lawyer to raise a lawsuit against a company that only hires people over 40.. Why? Because 40 somethings have experience enough to hold degrees in law and such.. Plus it could be a very good company, most 40 somethings have already had their children, some have been divorced and lost interest in forming new relationships, they aren't having anymore babies, and it's not but another 20-30 years before they start showing real signs of dementia, they aren't as gullible as the twenty somethings.. And I forgot something that was really cool.. but it's left me.. Oh that, that's probably the big one working against, short-term forgetfulness. But think about it, how much does a 40 something know that a 20 something has yet to learn, if you easily forgot something was it something that a 20 something wouldn't know anyhow. I mean, 40 something could effectively equate to the talent and experience of between 1 and 2 twenty-somethings depending on their ability to recollect knowledge .. So why not treat them as that. Which would you rather hire, young nimble ninjas or horse riding sword slinging samurai's?


keirnanholland profile image

keirnanholland 3 years ago from nowhere

hubpages, your "pixel.quantserve" is holding back the page load, is that your statistics collector, you might want to try "feedjit", its a fun one, you at least can see where people are coming from and what areas of the site they are using.. Anywho..

A twenty-something mentioned problems of being under-qualified.. I know what you mean.. My favorite joke is finding the job postings that say stuff like "must gave 5 years experience with C#, 3 years with java, must have masters degree in computer science, etc".. And they end up hiring some 23 yo indian guy.. That is just wrong, but it happens..

The moral of the story, put on your resume tons and tons of technologies that you have used, even if you had a few days on them. You are trying to get past the job screener and get through to those that are conducting the interview.. These days, its head hunters, then after them there is a interview with one guy, then an interview with the staff.. My position is "but computer science guys, you give them a manual, you introduce them to some code, they'll figure it out" the only really important thing is that they comment their code and have proper indention, the rest should be dealt with in design sessions and meetings. But it seems the lead designers are gullible to the pressure to use golden hammers and technologies that are "in" that they don't bother to try to standardize or clean up the existing mess and you end up with a hybrid junk pile that comes from people leaving and re-hiring.. When the job posting looks like a Frankenstein, the software should probably be shot like an old arthritic horse, put it out of its misery, and start over with a fresh development, and possibly a fresh new team made up of older and younger people, I'd put older people on the design team and the young will do the brute force coding, and how about this for the job posting: "need computer science majors or teenagers who have built computers with TTL circuits on breadboards." That would attract the right crowd..


Jewel01 profile image

Jewel01 3 years ago from Michigan

It's a nice thought to hire 40 plus, year old people. The issue is most company's are against it, because once you reach this age, one is more likely to suffer from a long term illness. Health Insurance cost more for these employees, and so on. It is 6 of one and half dozen of the other, when it comes to figuring out where to go from here. Suing big businesses for discrimination is not as easy, as one may think. I myself find myself between a rock and hard spot. I got my bachelors degree late in life, unfortunately for me, the economy is where it's at. I waited table for about 32 years. So, I saw this as something I could fall back on. I went from working 5 days a week as a waitress, to having my hours cut to 2 days a week, when they hired a 22 year old. They had said "we need to hire young girls to bring more guys in." I really thought they were just kidding me, but I guess I was mistaken. I quit out of principle. I was wrong there too. Currently, I am unemployed, unable to find a job in either position. Who do you blame? Personally, I blame my boss for being short sighted. I also blame the men who voiced their desire for younger woman. Honestly, what girl in here 20's wants a man in his 40's and older (some much older).

True Story:

We hired a new girl, she was about 19. As with most girls, she went through a training process. Young, adorable, full of sex appeal, she went about her way, wooing the guys. Pat was a regular customer, I had known him for over 20 years. Pat had always tipped me well, leaving 2 or 3 dollars for breakfast everyday. We rotated tables and customers to make it fair, and it happened that the new girl was to have Pat as a customer. I gave him his coffee, and told him she would be with him in a minute. She was busy talking to another customer, so I placed the order for her. His food was ready, so I delivered it. When he had finished and pushed his plate to the edge of the counter, twice, I decided it should be removed. Refilling his coffee throughout his stay, we never talked about the new girl. She had stopped by and spoke to him, and he was quite pleased to have her presence. When all was said and done, he left her a 5 spot. This went on 3 days in a row. On the 4th day, I was his waitress, so to speak, and he tipped me 2 dollars.

You might be asking yourself why I would tell this story? My point is, yep, it happens all the time. The truth of the matter is, most men over 40 are over weight, and not so attractive, like Pat, who was in debt up to his eyebrows. I don't think all men are like this, but honestly, I am hard pressed to find a man who doesn't make stupid statements about younger women.

There are many factors that contribute to this problem. I really don't know, maybe I don't believe, it will ever change.


keirnanholland profile image

keirnanholland 3 years ago from nowhere

So don't offer healthcare benefits, force everyone to buy their own health insurance, everyone in the healthcare industry knows that what drives the companies into the ground is the cost of the benefits of each employee. If the employees knew it was the cost of the benefits that kept them from being hired they would ask the benefits to be waived to get the job. It's a moot point. I pay for my own healthcare and I'm 42 years old and unemployed. I'll tell you the truth I'm living on handouts from my elderly father's pension which is easily 60K a year.. I made the mistake of being dependent on him for a decade, helping him because he was living alone, in one instance I saved his life when he fell sick to pneumonia, now he is living in a senior living facility and I was forced by my elder brother ( a lawyer) to go looking for work. On top of that I have a sever social phobia of interacting with people interviews, I've never been good at interacting with people in such situations, though when I'm confident and comfortable in my work, I am usually very encouraging and inspiring to those around me. The reason I got work back in 2000 at a dot-com is due to my managerial nature of a crowd of animators in school, one of those animators went on to form a dot-com that won 3 and then established 24 million dollars of funding. I was one of three developers he wanted in the company, I think there was 9 in all, and we even went so far as to construct our own machines from PC parts. But back then I was like 29 or 30. In my earlier 30s I got working with a man who developed healtcare informatics systems on his own, and when you work in a small business you buy your own healthcare.. He said that eventually everyone will be buying their own healthcare insurance because it is irresponsible to lump that into the incentives of the job, it just makes it that much harder to offer jobs because people will shy away from postings that don't offer any benefits... Me? I'd go for a company that would say "we offer 300 dollars per month extra for employee selectable insurance". That says to me that they want to reduce the overhead and run a tight efficient business. We Americans get pampered too much, and it's about time we take responsibility for it somewhere.. I think one area that really needs to get fixed is the elimination of lengthy drug patents, only Americans pay through the nose for experimental drugs, everyone elsewhere just synthesizes the the same drugs and offers them at a lower cost.. And of the drugs offered every year only a few are unique and new, the rest are repeats that have a slight chemical variation but just enough to be re-patented.

Also the government needs to tax companies so the weak ones are driven to foreign countries, Meh.. And the strong ones stay where there are health-standards where people know how to treat each other.. I've seen documentaries talking about how the American government and big business have a tendency to tag-team exploit third-world nations leaving the occupants to search for work elsewhere because the cost of living has risen in their own country beyond their means. We think mexicans immigrate to America because they want to live and work here, the truth is they work like dogs here, they make the money and send it home.. They'd live here if they could but not speaking the language they would prefer to return home. And that's why since the housing crisis they have left.. The companies have since moved south setting up shop in Mexico. We've known for a long time all the XBOX consoles are manufactured in Mexico, did you know that?

Nothing much is manufactured in America, its due to the cost of employment and peoples unreal expectations for employment.

If someone from India with a PHD from an indian university can come to America and take a position as a store clerk, I probably should be humble enough to take a position as a janitor, even though I have a computer science degree.. But there is that art minor I took that might be detracting from the degree.. Naw times are tough, what a great excuse for companies to be finicky about the finer points of someones resume.. I laugh, in all honesty I expect that most businesses are going to go under due to their lack of faith.. If Christian businesses really had faith, there would not be an unemployment problem.. But then again if people really had morals, there wouldn't be the sort of fraudulent activities that got us into this mess in the first place.


Jewel01 profile image

Jewel01 3 years ago from Michigan

I have never had health insurance, paid my way through life, cared for my parents and in-laws as the need fits. Just a regular kinda girl, woman, old lady as some might call me today. My issue, statement was in the context of citizens not rising to the occasion to support one another. When you finally sit down and make a list of the issues that need to be addressed, at the top of it, should be the mentality of the American people. We could choose to attack any industry, including doctors and hospitals, while we are at it. Medical costs in the United States are over 2 to 3x's that of other countries. I have shoveled shit, literally to help feed the family. I do not claim to be above any job.


keirnanholland profile image

keirnanholland 3 years ago from nowhere

I misread, or really failed to read your comment originally.. I edited my comment because you first started talking about health problems and I thought you were going to start talking about the overhead that for every employee (this is true in the tech fields) that a company shells out about 20-40% of the employees wage in benefits and company insurance, in case they lose the employee, to recover the cost of a lost of revenue due to the loss of the employee. So for every computer programmer that earns 60 to 80K a year, there is a 20-40K of extra money that the employer pays in insurance and benefits packages, insurance for the employee and the company. I'm not sure of this cost, as I'm not a professional but it's something I've heard.


Jewel01 profile image

Jewel01 3 years ago from Michigan

I agree that benefits for employees have gotten a bit out of control. The problem lies with the industries providing the services. As a waitress, I was paid 2.65 and hour by my employer and relied on the quality of service I could provide to increase my pay. The cost of living has risen to the extent that many Americans, including adult children, cannot afford to live outside the family home. There are many things wrong with the system, or systems we are forced to work within. It is not modeled to the extent that those who work hard are rewarded, but used and then cast aside when their usefulness seems useless. Hmmm...really, is there nothing I can offer? I feel as though many of the companies I applied for and didn't get the job, really missed out. Honestly, I just want to walk in the door one day and say, so how's it working out for you, sorry about you luck.


jayshreepattanaik profile image

jayshreepattanaik 3 years ago from INDIA

dear dorsi it is a very common problem with overage people but one should try and definitely will success


Mediagyrl profile image

Mediagyrl 3 years ago

This was a great article as it addresses one of the most underreported angles of the high levels of unemployment.

The downturn in the economy has really transformed so much. Older workers are one of the populations hit the hardest and many were relying on being able to remain employed with the same companies where they spent the bulk ,if not all of their careers.

The new workplace is as such where job security is quickly becoming a thing of the past and we all have to figure out ways to expand our expertise and not expect to hold the same job forever. It's a difficult notion especially since we are all in the midst of this transition as a society. Again, certainly this change is much more difficult for older workers who are competing with younger ones.


Billrrrr profile image

Billrrrr 3 years ago from Cape Cod

As the author of the hub, "High Paying Jobs - People Under 60 Need Not Apply", I can tell you that there are thousands of jobs for older workers; they are just not what they are used to.

As a product demonstrator, some days I make over $100 for a six hour gig. For a 70 year old who has not been able to work in his chosen field for almost twenty years, this is good money. I can work as many as five days per week.

I have written several hubs on how to get these jobs. They are plentiful. One company even pays a finders fee of $25.00 for each person sent to them, who is hired and completes several demo jobs. I have found that in the product demonstration business, the older you are the better you are received.


ExoticHippieQueen 3 years ago

Hey, Billrrrr, I'm going to check out that hub of yours.


joe-christmas profile image

joe-christmas 3 years ago from Turkey, Istanbul

its a very sad fact with overage people, but I believe in you, am sure you gonna make it succeed.


Jewel01 profile image

Jewel01 3 years ago from Michigan

Let's just commit to not saying, "overage" maybe we could start there. It implies a negative, don't you think?


Dorsi profile image

Dorsi 3 years ago from The San Francisco Bay Area Author

@Ewent) Scary stuff Ewent - especially the part about "bad credit". People fall into "bad credit" when they can't find work sometimes! What ridiculous and stereo-typing discrimination!

@donotfear) Thanks donotfear - glad you were able to find something and transfer those skills and Lord willing - you will get back to those places God wants you to use those other talents you have!

@PK Taylor) I'm sorry PK - my husband is also in the same boat now. Social security better not fold or there are going to be a lot of starving seniors....

@mitowrite) I agree write. The bar does seem to be extremely high for some of these jobs....

@Nish09) Thanks Nish and good luck with your writing... yes money can be made... but it does require a big learning curve!

@MarleneB) Thanks Marlene for coming by!

@Beyond-Politics) Thanks Beyond - I'll swing by and check those out.

@xstatic) I'm sorry x. Maybe you can turn some of your "hobbies" into money makers?

@Teencity) lol Ms. Clairol. Best of luck on building up teencityproductions!

@Anna Haven) Yes Anna I so agree.


Silkekarina 3 years ago from Germany

This has hit a chord and simply because that is what our world is all about at the moment. The word is ' Y O U T H'. If you haven't got it, you're out on a limb. I had the same problems and I must admit that I was relieved when I reached retirement age. However, there is a big 'BUT' here. I have read all your letters and comments and have seen that you are all great writers. Now use your talents to earn yourself your incomes. Forget about the interviewers who are not even old enough to look back on two decades, let alone assess a successful 40 something woman (or man) who was at the peak of his/her career when the interviewer was still wearing nappies (diapers). Show them that you do not need the condescension of someone who is younger than your own son or daughter and apart from a college degree has no other experience to enable them to assess anyone. Good Luck to you all.


shai77 profile image

shai77 3 years ago

What a great hub, and too true. In these times when there is such competition for every slot any little thing can count against you. I wish you lots of luck! VU & Interesting!


tirelesstraveler profile image

tirelesstraveler 3 years ago from California

Nicely written directions for job hunting. I think hair color for women is a good idea, but not sure how good it is for men. One friend who has spent years job hunting refused to do his hair even though his wife and daughter wanted him to.


day4all profile image

day4all 3 years ago from South United States

Right on target! This hub and the comments-so much I learned just reading here. Thanks for such a timely piece! I have decided to just "relax", enjoy my grandchildren, write, pursue my interests, volunteer, and travel-life is too short!


dreamseeker2 3 years ago

Being out of work for quite sometime now, I totally have to agree with your statement regarding the overage being discriminated against. Experience and dependability seem to fall by the wayside. I appreciate your hub and sharing it with us...tips and experience with the situation. Had to vote this one up and useful. : ) Thanks!


keirnanholland profile image

keirnanholland 3 years ago from nowhere

Naw Silkekarina this is what you do, you let the young'uns fail, the companies fail, then you start a company that buys up the companies that fail. But it's tough it get the bank funding to start the company that buys up the ignorant young company. Banks are the problem with the economy now. The solution is to let America get f*cked because it deserves it.

And move overseas to places like germany and france. America is toast..


Silkekarina 3 years ago from Germany

Keirnanholland, you are being a little hard on the USA! The youth cult is infiltrating the whole world. At one time a person became experienced with age. Nowadays, apparently, people are born with experience and this deteriorates with age. I'm so glad that I don't have to look for work any longer. I have my pension and I stock up my income with some writing. At least I don't have to listen to a lot of nonsense from these young know-alls.


Dorsi profile image

Dorsi 3 years ago from The San Francisco Bay Area Author

Sorry everyone for the delay in replying to these comments, since writing this hub I actually have acquired 3 part-time jobs, which joyfully are keeping me busy and a bit more on a better financial track!

@extranotes) Hi extra, I guess our club is not so "exclusive", huh?

@writeframeofmind) I so agree, thanks for stopping by.

@Sana Ratio) Thank you Sana

@Emmanuel Kariuki) Thanks Emmanuel. That young manager is truly discriminating, not good. Not good at all. Wonder how many young managers share his view.

@Cyndi10) Thank you Cyndi


kellysgirl profile image

kellysgirl 3 years ago from Atlanta, GA

Congratulations Dorsi!

Do any of these part-time gigs have anything to do with your amazing writing style :-)? Please share, as so many of us are still in the throws of this jaw-dropping-jobs-race; and I don't know about anyone else, but I've built up to much momentum to call it quits now. I'm evaluating all avenues, even the unconventional. So, if anyone has any ideas - let the brain games begin :-).

Congrats again Dorsi!


Dorsi profile image

Dorsi 3 years ago from The San Francisco Bay Area Author

@Ewent) Thank you Ewent. Very inspiring advice.

@Hezekiah) Thanks for coming by - and that's interesting about Japan's idea of how to go "younger"

@Nell Rose) That's alot of experience to get trumped by a "younger person". Glad to see you using your talent to good use here at HP!

@Robert Erich) Thank you Robert and thanks for the insightful comment about the "other side of the coin"

@Jenn-Anne) Thanks Jenn and congrats on finding a job that values your experience. Sounds like a keeper in this days economy!

@cartondamage 1) Thank you carton. Can I come work for you?


keirnanholland profile image

keirnanholland 3 years ago from nowhere

Its do or die, I think.. I'm doing what I love in the meantime, and that is to write hubs.. I've come to realize though, that to write about topics is different than making youtube videos. Really the only way to be successful with youtube videos is if you are an engaging personality with a nice home, ahem, someone who doesn't have to look for a job.. Which is a sort of catch-22, how do you make money on these articles/videos if you live in an apartment and lack table space to review products.. It seems it all has very little to do with brain power and more to do with image and ability to outright deceive people successfully.. I'd say 90% of the people on hubpages are BSing anyway.. Well written articles with zero research. But you have to be careful with what you say, otherwise your articles get shot down.


herbacoachtommy profile image

herbacoachtommy 3 years ago from Sweden

Very good informationa and advice,Yes it can be hard in todays jobsituation to get a job. I myself have been out of work for quite some time now.


sarahshuihan profile image

sarahshuihan 3 years ago from USA

I can relate, My husband is in a similar position, and we think that his confidence during interviews comes across as arrogance to the interviewers. It is not his fault, but I think one needs to find a balance between being themselves and how to come across as approachable and a good fit for the company. Great hub!


kulewriter profile image

kulewriter 3 years ago from Florida

You've shared useful advice that can be easily applied.

I am 65. After I was canned with an email (!) from a sales company where I earned the #1 position for 18 years straight, I had to choose between looking for a job and following my dream at last(!). Now I write and publish books full-time.

Like any of your readers who must do interviews to find work, I have to use my wit, skills, hard-won knowledge and imagination to obtain paying clients and publishers. The only differences are two: my dress code is my own; my (royalty) income is not only based on the quality of my work, but on how well my work is perceived by my "employers -- my readers."


Dorsi profile image

Dorsi 3 years ago from The San Francisco Bay Area Author

@LongTimeMother) What a great idea. I think the US should consider doing this too - gives the employers a little perk to hire us older workers.

@Scent) Good question but I think you could use the term manager too - after all that's what you did - managed your own distributorship. And try to fill those gaps even if it's with projects or volunteer work. I know employers don't like those gaps.

@nextchapter) Thanks and some libraries even offer free software training programs that you do at your own pace. Beats going to school if you can avoid it and just need to get up to speed in some programs.

@Pool Of Thoughts) Oh yes you are so correct on all points. And the economy being touted as in recovery is just hype to keep our spirits up. I predict things will get much much worse , but hey gotta keep the masses spirits lifted - even though it's not true!


dearmommy profile image

dearmommy 3 years ago

I am not in this category, but I found the article to be really well written and informative. I am scared to be in this place someday, because I agree with every point you made. Best of luck. You are a great writer, so any company would be lucky to have you!!!


Rose Anne Karesh profile image

Rose Anne Karesh 3 years ago from Virginia

I really appreciate your tips and honesty here. I am not in this category yet but I can see myself being there, and it helps to have someone offer some do's and don't's in advance. I wish you the best of luck and I hope your next interview lands you a great job with an employer wise enough to appreciate your experience and confident enough not to be intimidated by your expertise.


Dutchmaster10 profile image

Dutchmaster10 3 years ago from England

I'll pass this hub onto my cousin. He has a Phd in Economics and he finds it incredibly difficult to find work as usually he's got far more qualifications than the individual interviewing him?! He currently works for Bet365 in the call centres???!


Austinstar profile image

Austinstar 3 years ago from Somewhere in the universe

It really hurts to see these younger people doing a half-assed job that you could do 10 times better. I've already made the mistakes that these 20 somethings are currently making. I learned from those mistakes. Why don't employers recognize that hiring older workers save them tons of money? We are more stable, more dependable, get sick less often, don't get pregnant, don't particularly care if we get vacations every year. I dunno, I would hire a good older worker any day of the week.


Jewel01 profile image

Jewel01 3 years ago from Michigan

It is no longer about experience and skill, a lot of it has to do with the image of a business. I was replaced by 2 employees, which only cost them an additional 3 dollars an hour. This was to there advantage, when telling clients that business is growing (need to hire additional people). of course they did not have the skills I had, nor the education. It would have been time for them to consider a raise for me, so what did it really cost them.

I think, but maybe I am wrong, when an older person applies for a position, it may be difficult for a younger person to relate to us. We would not have much in common, except work.


barbat79 profile image

barbat79 3 years ago from Connnecticut

In my arena, age is not an issue, but rather an asset...it is a different sort of market industry in work in, however with respect to all others, I wholeheartedly agree, that is unless you want to work for minimum wage again and/or part time doing the jobs you did in high school! Both of those choices offer no future, no benefits, not enough pay to get you there and back and little satisfaction. Boy things have changed in the current job market for sure! Thank you for your article!!


KawikaChann profile image

KawikaChann 3 years ago from Northwest, Hawaii, Anykine place

Nicely done Dorsi, I will be interviewing internally for a position out of state - I know all the answers, so thanks for reminding me that all my present bosses are younger than I (thankfully, I don't look my age). I would also like to ad to your readers, that they shouldn't offer their age to their co-workers either. I have grandkids as old as some of my subordinates. Up voted/interesting and following. Peace. Kawi.


ketage profile image

ketage 3 years ago from Croatia

Ex business owners are definitely discriminated against, my theory is that people feel that if you cannot make a success of your own business how can you make a success of theirs. I have seen a persons facial expression change as soon as I tell them I used to run my own business. I now do the same as you Dorsi and tell people I was a manager.

I wish you all the best in finding the work you are looking for. If you have not already.


Odiegirl profile image

Odiegirl 3 years ago

I totally agree with this article and the comment made by Ketage. As a struggling business owner you are already looked upon as a failure if your own business does not succeed. Plus I'm 42- no one is hiring 42 year olds! This is why I try to keep my business afloat!


barbat79 profile image

barbat79 3 years ago from Connnecticut

Age is relative...to mine LOL I always see "old" as 30 years added to my own. I also believe that others perceive an age thought when we have one...if we think or are feeling old it can be detected. Best to all!


Paul Bisquera profile image

Paul Bisquera 3 years ago from Los Angeles

Love your article, Dorsi! Yep, it's time for us over 40 to get a business of our own instead of wallowing in the unemployment line!


keirnanholland profile image

keirnanholland 3 years ago from nowhere

@Jewel01 I'm 42 yo, I listen to Deadmau5 in the car, I love dubstep.. I play 3D video games, kick many young-uns at BF3, so much so they often ask why I pick on them. I think it's that they can't imagine someone who is twice their age ever identifying with them, they are afraid of the unknown, I think that's why they don't hire older people. The outside is old, the inside, we are all like 21 right? Who really thinks they are old? It's god's prank on us..


Jewel01 profile image

Jewel01 3 years ago from Michigan

@keirnanholland, I don't really think it is one thing that contributes to this social problem, but a culmination of ideas and feelings. It's hard to not take it personal. I have found this hub to be of comfort, knowing I am not alone, and their are things that I can do, to help me in my search for work. thanks for your post.


hunthedeals profile image

hunthedeals 3 years ago

I do think that corporate America does bend the age rules to a point but there are some companies and industries that accept older workers with open arms. The main problem is the pay scales that are paid are lower than what some may feel they deserve. Look our economy stinks and sometimes you have to get your foot in the door with accepting lower wages than just to sit home and place blame on being to old.


RWC149 profile image

RWC149 3 years ago from Jackson, MI

I love the hub, people like you are the reason this is the greatest freelancing site on the web.


keirnanholland profile image

keirnanholland 3 years ago from nowhere

I was watching a documentary about "Ian Flemming" who started his career as a spy novel writer post-40's. He wrote "Casino Royale" and pushed for the creation of the 007 franchise.

This is the other guy..

http://instantwatcher.com/titles/1556

There is life after 40..


My Moments profile image

My Moments 3 years ago

Oh the slight head nod. I have been guilty of that as well. And afterwards I had wondered myself, if that had made me seem smug or over confident.

I have stopped looking and just decided to start my own profit centers. Great hub!


Dorsi profile image

Dorsi 3 years ago from The San Francisco Bay Area Author

@kaiyan717) Great tips kai. I am now working 3 small part-time jobs that don't even amount to full time, but at least they are all in the same type of work (teaching art) so until something more stable comes my way at least I have something. Best of luck next year and hope you find the perfect job for you!

@MayG) Yes the job type does make a difference - I would still take that plunge and look for a job to your liking - hey sometimes we do get lucky!

@ExoticHippieQueen) I know there has to be a better way for those of us that are going through this....there are so many of that are good writers...just keep plugging along and writing well!

@johnakc) Thank you john!


Sunshyne1975 profile image

Sunshyne1975 3 years ago from California, US

Great hub, full of lots of good information and lots of great comments. You are a great writer. I am currently a small business owner, and if I do have to go back to a "real job" I think I might have a hard time adjusting to taking directions from someone else again. Hopefully we become successful soon and I won't have to worry about it. Thanks for the great hub.


adjoycepoet profile image

adjoycepoet 3 years ago from New Jersey

These are great tips. I'm unemployed and a bit on the older side, so I can relate. I think it's a shame that companies are passing up people with good experience but I guess I now understand the consequences of living in a youth oriented society.


azskyman profile image

azskyman 3 years ago from Arizona

Very real observations. I am less than six weeks away from planned retirement, need more than just a few bucks a week to supplement my social security, and have found dozens and dozens of positions that otherwise might be a fit. But no takers yet. Still, I'm intent to be patient and find something that values my ability and willingness to contribute, to show up on time, and to mentor by my actions, not solely by what I might say. Thanks for posting.


simondixie profile image

simondixie 3 years ago from Georgia

Wow! You really hit it exactly right. I have experienced the same feelings, the same difficulties with having a lot of experience, and yes, age discrimination is real---at least in the U. S. It shouldn't be but it is. I have recently retired and with a Ph.D. thought I'd have no trouble getting a job but I find myself playing down my education and my experience....makes me want to live somewhere else!


NicoleMessenger profile image

NicoleMessenger 3 years ago from Illinois

Great Advice! Your confidence will eventually land employable. You've managed to remain positive while overcoming obstacles along the way. Hang in there! Good Luck.


tommccollum profile image

tommccollum 3 years ago from Dallas, Texas

Well said! Insightful and helpful to many I'm sure. Thanks for sharing.

Tom


artist101 profile image

artist101 3 years ago from Hobart,In

Wow, what a great hub. i am also having problems in the employment field. I never thought about the "manager" part, nor did I think that my knowledge should be played down. I'm going to try some of your advice, and see where I land. What I don't understand is why is younger better? I have applied to numerous jobs, of which I already have experience in, and have been turned down flat, very discouraging. I'm not a giddy little girl anymore, and nor can I pretend to be one, it makes no sense, you would think that dependable, stable, and not calling off cause you have a date, would be a good thing, go figure.


Jewel01 profile image

Jewel01 3 years ago from Michigan

We become a threat to there way. If you are willing to show up everyday, why can't they?


simondixie profile image

simondixie 3 years ago from Georgia

I think the bottom line is that our culture values youth more than experience....not so in many other cultures....in the Orient, for example, maturity is of great value and older people wear special colors after they reach a certain age. The age thing is a milestone for them. Maybe our generation needs to be the one that can change some of that sort of thinking in our culture...


azskyman profile image

azskyman 3 years ago from Arizona

No easy task. It is deeply entrenched in our culture that while we may have much wisdom, we cannot keep up with technology and stay relevant. Keeping up often umps wisdom.


ShaydeShaffer profile image

ShaydeShaffer 3 years ago from Morrisville, VT

As a 19 year old, I have clearly not experienced any of these set-backs that you are talking about; my mother, however, has experienced the setback of being overqualified. She used to be the GM of a Courtyard by Marriott and a Towne Place Inn and Suites by Marriott, upon losing this job due to back issues, it took her years to find a job that would accept her including her qualifications. When this took place, I didn't understand why this was such a big deal, I thought employers would want someone with that amount of knowledge - turns out, they do not because they think that the employee would ask for a higher salary due to their amount of knowledge. I think that this is an ignorant blanket statement, while some employees would ask for a higher salary, that does not mean that others will ask the same. I am so sorry that you are experiencing this, I hope things work out for you!


artist101 profile image

artist101 3 years ago from Hobart,In

I totally agree with ShaydeShaffer it is ridiculous for employers to group every one the same. Most applications ask what your salary requirements are in the initial faze of applying. Isn't that what the question is for? I never thought of that one, maybe I should tone it down a bit.Crazy.


Dorsi profile image

Dorsi 3 years ago from The San Francisco Bay Area Author

@keirnanholland) Good points. Maybe we should all apply for Google and FaceBook and see if any of us get a call back? I've applied for both them a couple times and no response. That would be interesting to find out how many people over 40 work there. hmmm...AND - I would rather hire horse riding sword swing samurai's keir!


Dorsi profile image

Dorsi 3 years ago from The San Francisco Bay Area Author

@Jewel01) Jewel wow you have added a whole nother dimension to this problem. What a significant story with lots to think about...what are THEY going to really do with all these older people in the workforce? Are you working now or what do you plan to do? I think we need a whole other hub for brainstorming about this....

@keirnanholland) Thank you for the awesome commentary and thoughts. You have many many valid points. Is our government and businesses listening to all this??

@jayshreepattanaik) Thank you Jay for the encouragement.

@Mediagyrl) So agreed. We are definitely in a transitional state with all these older workers....

@Billrrrr) Thanks Bill. I'll be over to check out your hubs. This sounds promising. May not be for all of us but I am thankful you have shared this because it may help some/many of us.

@ joe-christmas) Thank you joe for the encouragement. Blessings.

@Jewel01) jewel I agree. What positive name could we give that "o-a" term? Let's brainstorm.


Nagatang profile image

Nagatang 3 years ago from Miri, Sarawak, Malaysia

Yes I would not hired a multiple degree holder to be my PA whereby someone is energetic and knowledgeable enough to complete that Powerpoint presentation in time for my tomorrow presentation and could type my servicing letter by telling her to whom and for what.

Overaged and Overqualify?....not necessarily ......I would like to have my business partner to be someone old enough, and with that multiple degree (knowledge at his/her fingertip) and that 20 years of working experience would be very handy.


Dorsi profile image

Dorsi 3 years ago from The San Francisco Bay Area Author

@Silkekarina) Thank you Silk for the encouragement - hear that writers???

@shai77 ) Thank you shai.

@tirelesstraveler) "years job-hunting?" YIKES!!!

@day4all) Good for you day. I wish I could afford to do that but can't for another 3 years....

@dreamseeker2) Thanks dream. Best of luck to all of us. Looks we really need it.


moronkee profile image

moronkee 3 years ago

This hub is speaking to my situation.When I graduated from University,the employers wanted employees with experience.This made it difficult for me to get employed.As time progressed,I acquired experience.Good.Now I'm goiing to 50 they are complaining.''Madam you have got the experience but your age is the constraint.''Funny!


simondixie profile image

simondixie 3 years ago from Georgia

And age discrimination is extremely difficult to prove!


Ruchi Urvashi profile image

Ruchi Urvashi 3 years ago from Singapore

Great tips. I agree that if an individual has work experience of working independently for few years, it is hard for him or her to work under a boss. The freedom is less in terms of time, idea or even space. Old workers might enjoy working independently in their own business instead of being an employee, that is family friendly too.


alphagirl profile image

alphagirl 3 years ago from USA

I got laid -off twice in a year and fell into a salon doing hair again. I think what has helped is the fact that I dress younger. I am young at heart. I don't look 50+. I think when you interview for a position that is primarily younger, you have to dress the part because kids today do not want to work with us older folk. Companies do not want to pay a seasoned worker for their knowledge because it means a paying a higher salary. I will say my clients who are mostly professional have an understanding that we all must work jobs to pay the bills. I am probably an anomaly. A decreed stylist. This for me works, I have flexibility and I get tipped well. I have cut some really experienced professionals bartending to make ends meet.


slappywalker profile image

slappywalker 3 years ago from Saratoga Springs, NY

Enjoyed the hub. You made some great points.

I'm 36, so honestly I have no clue where that falls in the age/experience spectrum. I have a feeling a lot of that depends on what company you are applying to and what types of people their workforce is already made up of.

The more I read the comments, the more I am convinced that the only true road to happiness is to figure out my niche and work for myself one day.


Jewel01 profile image

Jewel01 3 years ago from Michigan

@Dorsi: currently, I am unemployed, but holding my own, with the support of a wonderful man. I have applied for secretarial jobs, and a few waitress jobs, but nothing has really panned out. I refuse to get upset over this issue, knowing that something better, is out there.

As far as what we (old people) should be called, I prefer to be called by my name. I really don't mind being older. In fact, it was something I have looked forward to. Unfortunately, the economy is where it is at, and I am sure that it has multiplied this issue more than what would be considered, "normal." It was most difficult when I internalized the situation.

I want to tell you, this hub has been very helpful. Comments and suggestions have helped me to approach interviews in a different light, and I have even considered omitting my Bachelors degree from my resume. I really want to thank you for taking the time to post this hub.


Dorsi profile image

Dorsi 3 years ago from The San Francisco Bay Area Author

@kellysgirl) lol thanks Kelly but these other 3 jobs are actually my other "talent" - I am an artist and I teach art to children and families. I would gladly do this all day for the rest of my life but sadly there is not alot of work out there for art teachers. I am considering opening up another business though - my own art studio. Thanks for coming by kelly and keep on pushing forward my friend - we can only do our best.

@keirnanholland) Amen kiernan, there is money in video but like you said you need to have the right set-up (which I don't either)

@herbacoachtommy) Sorry to hear that. Best of luck with your job search and I hope that some of these tips helped.

@sarahshuihan) Exactly Sarah, at least he is aware of this and can work on that perception. Knowing something is the first step towards understanding and changing it...


Shennema22 profile image

Shennema22 3 years ago from NWI

Your article is right on, I feel the same way. I am over qualified and older than the average person. I even felt compelled to lose weight to be accepted but the problem lies in insurance policies because employers have to pay out more if you are older. I also feel threatened when I am asked to fill out the survey on my race, ethnicity and sex because I realize they have to meet a quota but unfair to the majority. I often want to answer other then type in human. Your article was so good, thanks for the read.


jocent profile image

jocent 3 years ago

I get the same feeling and treatment. I am an overseas worker and now I am in the situation you are describing. It is very sad that you know you still is capable and willing to do work as hard as anyone can but employers seems to look at the age rather than the capability of the employee. Experience nowadays are not counted over the agility as the balance in output is considered. I just think that new generations need the work much more than I do. Thank you for the share, excellent hub!


SidKemp profile image

SidKemp 3 years ago from Boca Raton, Florida (near Miami and Palm Beach)

Thanks, this is useful advice. I am still running my own company, but I face these issues in dealing with potential clients. And, as a career counselor, I have a client of my own facing these issues. I'm sharing this hub and pointing him towards it!


simondixie profile image

simondixie 3 years ago from Georgia

Wonderful news!! I just completed a job application for a position at the University of Florida and the application not only did not require my DOB, but the directions indicated that the applicant could NOT put the DOB until he/she was hired. In addition, the application directions instructed the applicant to give a minimum of the most recent ten years of employment. I will put more than the last ten years, but I do not have to put my B.A. degree, high school graduation, or other age-identifying information. What a relief! I have always heard that Florida's laws and policies tend to show concern for the needs of the 50 + population but this is far more than I expected. Why couldn't other states follow suit?


Dorsi profile image

Dorsi 3 years ago from The San Francisco Bay Area Author

@kulewriter) Thanks kule for reading and the encouraging story. I think I may be following your path...

@dearmommy) Thank you dear. What encouraging words!!

@Rose Anne Karesh) Thank you so much Rose and thanks for reading.

@Dutchmaster10) Thanks for sharing Dutch and I hope this hub helps him.

@Austinstar) All great points Austin and I agree 100%

@Jewel01) This is true Jewel...money always plays a big part in decision making but like many have pointed out - it's wise to higher an older person. Generally more stable and less likely to leave if they are happy...

@ barbat79) Amen to that! I want to go forward, not backwards!

@KawikaChann) Good luck Kawi with your interview and good point!


Jewel01 profile image

Jewel01 3 years ago from Michigan

@simondixie: sounds like a great policy for Florida. When people stop looking at age, I think that business' would find employees who are well rounded.


Dorsi profile image

Dorsi 3 years ago from The San Francisco Bay Area Author

@ketage) Yes manager seems to be the way to go on a resume. I still consider having our small business open for 14 years as successful even though we eventually closed (14 years is along time, amen!) Anyone in a small business knows how hard small business workers work....but I guess some companies just don't appreciate that fact...

@Odiegirl: Yes, if you can slog through it it's definitely worth keeping - I do miss our business (sometimes lol)

@barbat79) I like your attitude barb! Thanks for reading.

@Paul Bisquera) Amen to that Paul!

@Jewel) I am blessed to know this hub has brought you comfort!! Thank-you!


Cheeky Girl profile image

Cheeky Girl 3 years ago from UK and Nerujenia

Life can be a beach! Dorsi you have great writing talent and you are one of the best hubbers here, so don't worry what they think of you. If they worry too much about things like age, then they are being far too superficial, and not looking at skills and work experience. these qualities count for a lot. Graduates are leaving college without any clue about the real world or how stuff works , except what they read in a manual.

Don't worry if they feel intimidated by your experience. I've intimidated interviewers with my cheeky sense of humor and I'm in my 20's. Let them eat cake! LOL!


MaryGraux profile image

MaryGraux 3 years ago

A very interesting hub however I would be so excited if I would know what age employers think is old. Sometimes I think most employers assume that the more experience you have in the job market the more your starting pay will be high while a younger employee will get into the market with a normal starting pay. I could be wrong but anyway I voted your hub up!!


janetkeen 3 years ago

I agree with all you have said. i was sort of interviews by a couple of much younger peopel for an art teaching job and they looked at me as if I didn't count because i was older.

I was aghast at their cockiness and presumptuousness. Definitley not good PR for the organisation. I agree that some younger people who are interviewing you can feel intimidated.


Dorsi profile image

Dorsi 3 years ago from The San Francisco Bay Area Author

@hunthedeals) agreed Hunt. We do need to take into account a lousy economy - and lower wages are being paid pretty much overall (because companies know that someone will take the job)

@RWC149) aww thanks RWC!

@keirnanholland) That is inspirational - thanks for sharing!

@My Moments) It's surprising how many people have mentioned that nod! Best of luck with your profit ideas!

@Sunshyne1975) Thanks Sun and best of luck to getting your business up to where it needs to be. It's worth trying to invigorate it at least before you make a decision you might not be able to reverse....

@adjoycepoet) Thanks and sadly it does seem that the younger workers tend to have the upper hand now when it comes to hiring.

@adjoycepoet) Thanks and best of luck to you in your search. I'm sure you will find something with your positive outlook.

@simondixie) Sorry to hear that simon. Best of luck to you in your job hunt too.

@NicoleMessenger) Thanks Nicole. I really appreciate your encouragement!

@tommccollum) Thank you Tom and YW!


Dorsi profile image

Dorsi 3 years ago from The San Francisco Bay Area Author

@artist101) Yes, it can become discouraging. Please let me know how your job search goes.

@Jewel01) hmmm.... you may be onto something there...

@simondixie) That's interesting and yes I think there are many positive things we can learn from other cultures - especially about reverence for older people!

@azskyman) good analysis...

@ShaydeShaffer) You sound like a wonderfully supportive daughter and I just realized how this hub can help change younger peoples thoughts. If there are more people like you that "understand" our dilemma we will have more jobs offered to us as older workers...thanks for reading and the comment.

@artist101) agreed!

@Nagatang) Yes and it would make sense for a PA to have up-to-date skills, and experience.

@moronkee) Sounds like they are openly asking for a lawsuit by not hiring you because of your age (and "telling" you that!) - in the US it's illegal to do but we know they do it anyway! They just don't say it..usually anyway..


janetkeen 3 years ago

What I really find distsasteful is when I am being talked at by some young super fast , so called" on to it" young person who exudes boundless confidence and who looks at me like Im a dinosaur at 51. They are so impatient you get the feeling they want you to hurry up and talk quickly like them. I just can't stand their arrogance. I work for myself teaching people how to be creative and I am used to being respected and liked.

I hope to never be interviewed for a job by these people. I am passed working for others unless they are respectful.


simondixie profile image

simondixie 3 years ago from Georgia

I am turning in applications for several positions and I am not putting any of my bachelor's degree information----it's not relevant, but my master's degree and doctorate are relevant. I hope I can get by with leaving this information off.


Dorsi profile image

Dorsi 3 years ago from The San Francisco Bay Area Author

@simondixie) Yes it is simon.

@Ruchi Urvashi) Agreed Ruchi. Thanks for coming by.

@alphagirl) Congats alpha on finding your niche. I think that's another hub I should do. We all have different talents and it's finding ways to make those work for us.

@slappywalker) Exactly slappy, exactly!!

@Jewel01) Oh thank you Jewel and I'm so glad you have that support - that is so important. Finding someone in your corner to help encourage you!!

@Shennema22) Thanks Shenne and yes, that whole quota thing irritates me. That can be discrimination too!!

@jocent) Sorry you are experiencing this also and yes I agree with your comment too.

@SidKemp) Thank you Sid!

@simondixie) That's great to hear simon. Let me know if you get the job and best of luck!!

@Jewel01) Agree Jewel!!


Dorsi profile image

Dorsi 3 years ago from The San Francisco Bay Area Author

@Cheeky Girl) I love your attitude lol. Thanks!

@MaryGraux) Good question. I would venture to say this type of discrimination would begin in the 40's and definitely by the 50's. Just IMHO though....

@janetkeen) Sorry janet you had to go through this too....best of luck on your job search too.

@simondixie) Best of luck with that simon and I hope doing that helps your job search.

and wow...I finally got caught up with everyone's comments. Thanks everyone for the very interesting things shared here.


suzzycue profile image

suzzycue 3 years ago from Ontario, Canada

I agree with what you have said here Dorsi. The better jobs are not out there anymore in my location and people don't hire over qualified people to work in a kitchen/restaurant. I don't know how one gets to retirement age from 55 to 65 with no work. So even packing groceries is the option I guess for now.


barbat79 profile image

barbat79 3 years ago from Connnecticut

I liked the "have your own business" idea. :)


Dorsi profile image

Dorsi 3 years ago from The San Francisco Bay Area Author

@suzzycue) So true - at least as long as we have social security to look forward to it's not such a bleak picture - the questions now are like you said though: What do we do in those in between years? And what's going to happen if social security gets taken away?

@barbat) I'm starting to think this is way for me to go again...except this time I won't make the same mistakes I made the last time!


homesteadbound profile image

homesteadbound 3 years ago from Texas

Dorsi - I am right there with you, on all points, even having just shut down a busy I had for 11 years. It is tough out there. But I recently got a job that I really love and I feel may have potential. Good luck to you. And yes, I think it helps to learn new things. I know I certainly have been doing that ... and faking pretty good many times as I go along until I have that skill down a whole lot better.

And now, with my knee having given out, and no insurance, not only do I have all the things you have already addressed, now I am on crutches too. Makes it really hard to think about looking any more. But the bills keep coming.

Yeah, I worry about the future. With no savings, and social security not looking so secure, not sure I can ever retire. I am so thankful for the job I currently have. It is my own business as a consultant...

Good luck to you Dorsi!


simondixie profile image

simondixie 3 years ago from Georgia

The "have your own buiness" idea is working for me---tutoring----I love what I'm doing, but the "own business" thing is not a sure thing---of course, nothing is really a sure thing. But tutoring is a great business at the end of the school year and not so busy at other times. Any ideas, anyone??


xstatic profile image

xstatic 3 years ago from Eugene, Oregon

I signed on as a writing tutor with an online national service about three months ago, not expecting anything to come of it really. But, a grad student raised in Spain and studying for a master's degree hired me and so far we have spent about five hours working on writing problems. She posted excellent feedback on the site as well.

I was also lucky enough to be able to audition for and film a commercial for a local law firm last week. That chance came through an agent I signed up with about three years ago. It is not a living, but fun and paid well for the time spent.


Dorsi profile image

Dorsi 3 years ago from The San Francisco Bay Area Author

@homesteadbound) Glad you found something and awesome that's it something you like. I'm just trying to keep our heads above water. Hubby just went back to work last week after being laid off since summer. And I'll be working full-time doing Art Camp with the kids so that's good. Still waiting to hear if I passed a civil service exam for a Gov. job - hoping that one plans out. Good pay and benefits...

@simondixie) Just keep throwing that "fishing line" out there simon, that's what I do and sometimes I catch a fish. And sometimes I catch a few. That's the analogy I use for my own life. Just keep throwing out that line....

@xstatic) That's great to hear x. Like I said above to simon...just keep throwing out that line....could hook a nice big fish....

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