Losing your job is hard, but if you’re an older worker, it’s even harder to get back into the workforce.
But despite difficulties, Renée Rosenberg, Career Coach with GetFive and author of Achieving the Good Life After 50, says her clients are getting jobs. In fact, she thinks prospects are looking up for older workers.
According to Rosenberg, one of the biggest issues to come up for those who have lost a longtime post is the sense they are out of the loop. “They have the feeling that they’ve been stuck, and that time has passed them by.”
These feelings can lead to symptoms of depression and anxiety. It can take time to get past these emotions. To help, Rosenberg recommends taking the time to complete the Seven Stories exercise. This involves listing the seven achievements you’re most proud of. This helps to build self-esteem and forces you to hone in on your skills and values, not your shortcomings.
The next step is to dig deep in your network. Contact everyone you know — even those you haven’t talked to for years — and let them know you’re looking for a new job. Even get in touch with people you last knew a long time ago.
Older workers will need to make some adjustments and consider jobs outside their area of expertise or comfort zone. Sometimes they may have to take a pay cut, or a position that has less responsibility and glamour than their previous job.
The kiss of death, says Rosenberg, is hiding behind your computer and sending your resume into a black hole. Like job seekers of any age, older individuals are more successful when they are open to change and pursue a new career in an active manner.