ZLABS‎ > ‎500 Interviews‎ > ‎590 Not Hired‎ > ‎


Updated 05/06/2017
   Ageism is out there.  No doubt.
   So the question becomes how are
   you going to deal with it?  Try to
   live off your remaining savings for
   the next few decades?  Look for a
   way to show you are NOT the classic
   old frumple bag trying to hide in a
   job until you can afford retirement?
  Focus on landing your new job! 
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     (Click to enlarge image) 

    3 Tips to Get Around Ageism in Your Job Search  |  Beyond.com, John Krautzel                      03/22/0000        Ageism may be illegal, but that doesn't mean older workers don't suffer from age-based
     prejudice during a job search. Although you can't change your age, there are a few things
     you can do to fight employer ageism. Here are three tips to make yourself an attractive
     hire at any stage in life.

    Ten years ago, Javier seemed destined for a long, successful career in digital marketing.
    At 25 years old, the California native had taken a $42,000-a-year job at a firm in Santa
    Barbara; his salary was raised to $54,000 in less than a year.
    But the next few years proved hectic, as Javier bounced from job to job, with no clear
    career path. He quit his job in Santa Barbara after his long-distance girlfriend unexpectedly
    got pregnant in 2008, and “stepped up,” moving to the Inland Empire to marry her and raise
    their child, as well as his wife’s child from a previous marriage. He got another digital
    marketing job later that year, this time for a real estate listings website, but it vanished
    after the housing bubble burst.

    How to Fight Age Discrimination At Job Interviews  |  Knockemdead.com, Martin Yate
    While questions about age rarely get asked (they’re illegal, as if you didn’t know), that
    doesn’t stop the curse of age discrimination playing out at job interviews. With age comes
    experience, a wider frame of reference and greater steadiness, but these invaluable assets
    can also create blind spots that trip you up – which makes dealing effectively with the
    whole issue challenging but achievable.  

   Myth of Staying Employable Past 50 |  LinkedIn,                                                                    01/08/2017
     Read the article before you panic and so something ill advised ... there is a solution provided!
Many prospects call me and lament their status in today’s job market. “I have just been for
    the second time and I am in my 50s. I cannot afford to retire for another 10-15 years
    because my youngest son has not entered college yet.  
I do not know where to turn; do you
    think that you can help me?” is a typical call of resignation I receive more often than I care
    to count. 
 Although I am based in the Silicon Valley my practice is global; I have clients in
    23 countries in many areas of business and industry. So, these calls are almost geo-agnostic.

Age discrimination is rampant.  So what can you do about their problem?
 One is to read Martin Yate's article above, "How to Fight Age Discrimination
At Job Interviews" ... and you don't need a lawyer to do it.

  One first step is to get the easiest way to discriminate by age shut down.
    The Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967 Civil Rights Bill protects workers
    starting at Age 40.  The Public Records Act guts this Civil Rights Protection by
    making it legal to disclosed to anyone, without obvious inquiry, to find your age
    and often Date of Birth through a simple generic name search.

When a hiring manager is concerned you are at the same age or older than his/her parents, this is a failure of an employer to train their managers.

UNDERSTAND:         Employers are focused on profits, productivity, and lower insurance
                                costs and time away from work.  Selling your experience and
                                abilities and health will help dispell this.  Before threatening,
                                suggesting or even hinting of possible action against an employer,
                                consult legal counsel with your documentation.  It sells movies but
                                doesn't always work out well in a real courtroom in real life.

                                Wikipedia - Definition of Ageism
                                American Psychological Association - Fighting Agism
                                Combating Agism (New Zealand)
                                Age Discrimination: Highlight from Aging Workforce

The secret includes understanding what is happening and the mindset.  Do NOT enter an interview with "guns blazing".  Deflect their preconceived perception you are too old.

Some cardinal rules:
   1.  Do not discuss High School or Jr. High School Graduation dates.
   2.  The US Military Draft ended January 27, 1973.  Watch out for that question.
   3.  Do not indicate you are married or on what date.
   4.  College dates are fair game; decide for yourself how to address college dates.
        It will likely come up in a background check.
   5.  Do not discuss children, especially the birthdate of your first born or adoption.
   6.  Do not reveal when you received your Driver's License.  Only confirm you have one.
   7.  Do not discuss your first election you voted in or who you supported.
   8.  Do not give your Military discharge date or where you fought, but indicate you were
        honorably discharged and whether you saw combat
but do not mention where or
        when.  These days that could be Korea to the Middle East.
   9.  Do not talk about popular TV shows you watched as that can quickly date you.
 10.  Do not give clues to date you on Facebook or other social media forums.
 11.  If you are a US Citizen, say so. Do not get into what City or State.

Sad, but these add up to factors which can, intentionally or not, remove or diminish your chances for employment or prevent merit-based career advancement, raises and rewards.  This is where a seldom enforced violation of the law becomes an unjustifiable act against good capable people, harms employee morale and diminishes interest in long term employment with a company ... because no one gets younger at their job.  Talent has no age constraint.

Unfortunately many only view the perceptions of age and overlook the difference each generation has demonstrated in regard to lifestyles, commitment, and work habits.

Marc Cenedella (Founder, Executive Chairman, and CEO of Ladders, Inc.) wrote a piece on age which is worth visiting at https://www.theladders.com/career-advice/kid-interviewing-says-youre-old/


  3x Year Olds:  Shape the Long Term
Start planning your next job for your resume.  Benefits become more of a focus as you potentially begin a family.  By now you have proven your skills to showcase your abilities but look at taking some professional risks.  Keep your work/life balance in line.  Consider what your work does to benefit your employer and the value from your involvement.  Being to brand yourself as an expert at work.

  4x Year Olds:  What has your impact and legacy been?
Your job satisfaction may be a key player in staying or going on the market.  If you seek a change, look for a job that has impact so you can define yourself by who you are PLUS what you do.  These increase in importance as you become older.

As you salary increases their costs, be prepared to discuss your value add that offsets added cost.  Could younger less costly employees have done this level of work and cost benefits to the company?

  5x Year Olds:  Find Meaning
You are becoming too expensive for some.  In lieu of taking steps backwards and down in compensation, consider emphasizing your accomplishments and experience while de-emphasizing age.  Stop showing graduation dates and limit employment history to the last 15 to 20 years.  Put your great accomplishments that fall outside the 15 to 20 years in an Accomplishments Resume section to keep credit for the great things you did.

Companies are starting to promote lifetime positions to retain the younger aged workers so leverage that gently in your arguments.

  6x Year Olds:  Be Flexible
When younger, the idea of retiring before 65 was a goal for many.  With the loss
of job security, retirement pensions being terminated, significant hits in the
stock market, banking system and real estate between the late 1970's and 2010
plus the failure of a meaningful economic recovery since 2011, retirement for
many will be in the early 70's if continued employment is possible.

Employers fear your technological obsolescence, skyrocketing insurance costs,
and less tolerance due to age.  Build your brand to dispel these concerns and if
needed, be open to consulting and part-time work.  Promote your experience and
work ethics while showing hunger to succeed, mentoring younger workers, and a
strong flexible approach.   Your experience, wisdom, insights and dependability
are strong cards to use along with institutional knowledge and deep industry expertise.

  7x Year Olds:  Be More Flexible
This will be the next shock to employers as life expectancies extend with people healthier but costs continuing to increase.  Defined benefit plans were mostly phased out and many lost value as companies did not manage them well or at all. Delaying Social Security can help your total payments - check the rules as they can and will continue to change.  Continued employment can help you avoid severe reductions in your retirement savings from unplanned catastrophic events such as Alzheimer's which can develop suddenly.  Remember what you take out from retirement is taxable so be smart on how you save in regard to tax liabilities and the mandatory withdrawal of tax deferred accounts.   Consider a gradual movement from funds into a ROTH which can be inherited and no known "draw down" requirements.  This places the tax liability potentially into years when earning less to minimize the big hits later.   Considering using a tax and/or investment advisor to protect your savings to the greatest legal extent to insure more funds when you are most exposed to injury or illness and want to insure funds for your survivors, potentially through trusts or other vehicles.  Assume the worst, plan for it being more so and hope you were a pessimist.  We all gotta go sometime, so plan to go in comfort, good health and style.