Thoughts On Employment

This article was published about a month ago, and I've also read various other sources about the same problem, finding a job when you're unemployed and older. The chances of finding another job in your field is slim to none, and you may be involuntarily unemployed the rest of your life. If this happens, are you ready for it? It's a long time until you qualify for social security, or your pension if you're lucky enough to have one, and there are penalties for withdrawing your retirement savings for many more years.
 
Its scary to think that perhaps the scoundrel Rick Scott actually has believers and may get voted in as new Governor of Florida. Life will suck if that happens, especially since I'm a civil servant of the State of Florida - the very group of employees that Rick Scott would love to minimize and eliminate from the world. If the wrong person gets in office and the legislature cuts government staffing, I may lose my job. And as an older worker approaching mid century vintage this is not cool. If I were one of the unemployed, would I get rehired? A growing trend is that companies only will consider employed people as candidates for their openings. I think I have a pretty good chance compared to other candidates even if my competition is younger. Here are a few ideas on how to keep yourself competitive in the job industry.
  • Stay Healthy - I mentioned how to stay healthy earlier and I believe that a healthy body and a healthy mind go hand in hand. If you keep yourself healthy and you "look" healthy, you'll be more attractive to employers. They may assume you are healthy if you look and act healthy. This means less medical expenses for insurance and less sick time and lack of productivity. If you smoke, don't let your employers know - don't waste time at work out by the smoking area.
  • Keep Up Technologically - one sure difference in our society with age groups is the use of technology. The younger crowd uses it. Most older people shy away from technology because they don't understand it. This is a key factor in your hiring potential - do you know how to operate a computer, can you figure out all the features on your cell phone, can you figure out how to scan and send a document on the copier at the office? Do you know how to use a lot of the features and programs on your computer - like all the Microsoft applications and email and the Internet? If you don't, you're not going to get the job because there are a ton of people who know that stuff.
  • Be Interesting - It seems to me a lot of younger people prefer to text or email rather than talk to friends. Social skills are lacking and this will hurt them in the workplace, this is where you can have the advantage. If you have manners, know etiquette, are polite and yet interesting to talk to, you will succeed in the interview. A person who "fits" and doesn't seem to have outward hangups or is opinionated and set in their ways will succeed at work and be easier to train. You can always be taught the job skills needed, but you can't expect to learn people skills on a job. Interviewers look for people skills.
  • Use Your Brain - I mean outside of work. Keep your critical thinking skills sharp by reading and writing, not just the newspaper either. Write a Blog. Do crossword puzzles or cryptoquips, or for me I calculate my coupon grocery shopping trips and organize my coupons. This is no easy feat as most of you know. Anyway, it helps to think on your feet, and do math in your head when you're shopping.
  • Face Reality and Change What's Wrong - If you are obese or ugly or stupid, you can change. You can lose weight, or use makeup and change your hairstyle, or start learning (or pretend you know what you don't) if you are stupid. No matter what your problem is, you can work on it. You may not want to face the fact that you're a bitch to get along with and that you hate minorities - but you need to. Reality is perception. If others perceive you to be offensive in some way they won't want you around. You may have no clue why you don't get any jobs after you've had interviews - and there is a reason. You need to find out what your problem is and deal with it.
  • Act Younger - if you do the things you liked to do when you were younger, you'll feel younger. One thing I do is ride my bicycle almost everyday. Its carefree and there's that sense of danger and riskiness being out on the road with all the crazy drivers. Its like being on a roller coaster ride at Busch Gardens - but its real life. Its fun and I love how it makes me feel high when I ride really hard and get all pumped up. You could also try wearing some clothing you liked when you were younger, some shoes or a new hairstyle. All these things will help you act younger and seem younger. It will make you smile.
So, that's my take on it. I hope any of you out there who are unemployed take all this thought with a grain of salt, I know every situation is different and we all have circumstances that are beyond our control. But, there is probably something you can do to improve your chances of getting a job. Just figure it out and do it.

2 comments:

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  2. Great article and excellent tips. Both of my brothers were unemployed for over a year and they're not even "older" like me. It's rough out there right now.

    I found you on the Sunday Social Exchange and I'm following your blog. I would love a follow back - Kentucky Frugalista. Have a great day!

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