Over 55 and looking for work – the Bad News

Over 55 and looking for work – the Bad News

  • Unemployment inched down nationally in December, from 10.2% to 10%.  But rose for 55 and older workers from 7% to 7.1%.
  • Unemployed for an average of 36 weeks.
  • Number of “discouraged” unemployed older workers rose from 130,000 to 199,000 in December.
  • Unemployed 55-64 yr-old workers more vulnerable because of falling investment return and collapsing retirement programs.

Over 55 and looking for work – the Good News

Technology, health care and education will continue to be hot job sectors, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ outlook for job growth between 2008 and 2018.  More than two million new technology-related jobs are expected to be created by 2018, according to the BLS.

  • Tech skills alone are not enough.  Those who have people and relationship skills as well will thrive.
  • Have a clear “Elevator Speech.”  Know your unique strengths
  • Don’t be a generalist – be specific
  • Be bold, confident and enthusiastic – more energy sells
  • Recognize you are “selling” something – YOU

The two biggest pitfalls I see with 55+ job seekers:

  1.  Not being clear on unique value – too general
  2. A subtle sense of “entitlement.”  No one owes you a job, no one will feel sorry for you. 

If you fall into these traps you’ll be convinced that the economy is bad and no one is hiring.  Make yourself stand out as the best candidate and you’ll be amazed at the opportunities that appear.

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11 Responses to “Over 55 and looking for work – the Bad News”

  1. Terry Says:

    I am 55, unemployed, and an unskilled generalist with no career-related experience. Going to school is not an option – no money and cannot get financial aid.

    What hope is there for me?

  2. admin Says:

    Long as there is a God in heaven, there is hope.

    You cant attend school, but you can read books. volunteer. there are options. Perhaps you can take two or three part time jobs to make ends meet?

    Keep the faith. Don’t give up.

  3. Tricia Says:

    One time I answered an ad that specified a very young maximum age for a part time position. I was over a decade older, but it was exactly what I was looking for, so I went. There was also one component of the work that I wasn’t very strong in, and I was honest about it. The interview went very well; the person hiring and I really clicked. She also was intuitive, and could see from our conversation about the subject, that I was passionate about it. She made the decision on the spot to hire me.

    This confirms several of Dan’s main points in the newsletter: the effect of bold, energetic confidence, and the wisdom of taking very good care of your physical and spiritual health. It’s hard to exude bold, energetic confidence when you’re tired or discouraged.

  4. Bruce Gulde Says:

    Yes, the above posts are great suggestions. Don’t let qualifications in ads discourage you. I one interviewed for a job whose ad said Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering required. I had an associates degree in computer science at the time. I sent a resume, got an interview, was truthful during the interview, and got the job!

    Fast forward to 2 months before my 55th birthday. My wife and I bought a successful business in tourist town of less than 900 people. We have grown the business over the last 2 years and during 2009 our sales increased 15%!

    As an earlier post stated, get out and do some networking. Meet people, TALK to people, be honest about your situation, and let your desires be known. Volunteering is good, especially in a field which you are interested.

    Last year was tough, the banks weren’t lending to small businesses, but we let people know our situation and financial “angels” appeared from unexpected places.

  5. Larry Chaffin Says:

    I am 53 and have not been working for quite a few years because of a disability in my life. But through much prayer and work I am now starting a financial management and debt freedom business, after going through Dave Ramsey’s classes and reading Dan Miller’s book 48 days, I know what I want to do the rest of my life. I have a lot to learn but with God nothing is impossible.

  6. Tricia Says:

    Good for you, Larry! Congratulations. Debt freedom is a vitally important area. I’ll be praying for you and your success. And I totally agree with you, and have seen its truth in my life innumerable times, that with God, truly nothing is impossible!

  7. Pam Says:

    Currently, I find myself unemployed at the age of 48, the single mom of a teenage son, totally burned-out from over 25 years as an executive assistant, and longing for a new career. Woaaaaah is me – LOL!
    I ran across this blog and all of your wonderful insight while looking for answers to my troubling questions, of which begin with “how in the world am I going to get from this seemingly hopeless point in my road to where I want to be?” It appears that Dan’s books will certainly become part of my research.
    I just wanted to thank you all for your encouraging words and reminders that through Christ all things are possible. The best to each of you!

  8. Miquel Votraw Says:

    Unlike many posts on the internet, this was fun to read and gave me some valuable input. I will have to put a backlink on my website. Regards. J

  9. best teeth whitening strips Says:

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  10. Harvey Marks Says:

    I will be turning 60 in a few days. I am in a total dead end job. I was just informed that my hours will be cut in half. I have been reading “No more dreaded Mondays” It has certainly inspired me to think differently. My problem is the same as it has been for years “FEAR” of stepping out. I could use any and everyone’s prayers.

  11. Dudley Iamiceli Says:

    Thank you for the information provided. The best content I’ve seen in this niche.

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