Friday, December 10, 2010

Tips To Fight Age Discrimination in the Job Search

I spoke with an older employee who had recently lost a spouse and was looking to go back to work. She was fearful of her chances of finding employment.  "Nobody wants to hire old people anyway and with all these young people looking for work, I feel bad trying to take a job from them.  They have families."

I reminded her that she really needed to put her best forward and not show hesitation in her search.  Not only did she feel most employers would not want to hire her because of age, she also felt that those who would, were not willing to pay what her experience deserved.

I shared with her the following list of tips Ishared to help her fight any age discrimination in employment.

1. Stay cheerful and high energy for all phone or in-person job interviews
2. Speak to the benefits of experience, professional maturity and expertise
3. Keep resume content current and stick to relevant information. Read 50 Hot Resume Writing Tips.
4. Speak to the long term value you can bring to the company
5. Tell stories about outstanding outcomes in prior assignments
6. Consider using a functional resume
7. Use cover letters to focus on relevant, recent experiences
8. Speak to your ability to collaborate and work with everyone from Boomers to Millennials.


Anonymous said...

If you are stumped during the interview when asked, "Do you have any questions about our operation?"
ask: "When is the last time your firm hired someone over 50."

Not all who wander are lost. said...

This is a topic that I feel with get even more attention as older adults need to stay in the job market longer due to the economy. They need to stay on top of interviewing and job advice as much as anyone else. Age discrimination is illegal - tell your friend to keep that in mind. She can find lots of resources - from tips to legal advice over at

Marianna said...

In regard to # 1 - I'd suggest learning to balance the nervous system (transform stress) so that the cheerfulness and energy is a natural occurrence and not a forced one.

My favourite is #8 - the ability and wisdom to work with and appreciate those of various ages.

BullsEyeCareers said...

Excellent question to ask in the interview to make employers aware you are thinking about the issue.

BullsEyeCareers said...


No question stress manifests itself in the interview especially if the applicant is worried about this kind of discrimination.

Your tips are always so welcome.


Gregory V. Boulware said...

Sound advice, Marcia:

I wonder how many are putting up a fight to the finish on this issue?

Older people have so very much to offer...wisdom, experience, abilities, knowledge, and yes - patience. After all, didn't we learn from older people - too?

Peace and Love,
Gregory V. Boulware - view my articles - simply type my name into your web browser.

BullsEyeCareers said...

Greg is so right about being willing and able to stand up for one's self and ask questions about your rights.