Many people want to stay in the work force past the traditional retirement age. Many employers want to lay off older workers, partly because they cost more than younger workers. But there still are ways for older workers to prosper in this economy. Here’s a good overview of the situation with a lot of tips for older job seekers. Some key points are to emphasize what you can do for an employer, show you are willing to learn, identify senior-friendly industries and firms, and network.
Even if your contacts get you in the door for an interview, the young person sitting across the table from you might have her own biases. The important thing is to get her to see your age as an asset.
Arlene Handmaker, who describes herself as in her “upper 60s,” has more than 30 years of experience in Pittsburgh’s health care industry, seven of which were in sales for an assisted-living facility. “I had a 98 percent conversion rate from tours of our facilities to move-ins,” she says. “The fact that I was older helped me. We had a very sweet young lady in her twenties working there, too, but a lot of the families coming in would say, ‘Can I please deal with you? She doesn’t get it.’”