The job market is tough for everyone nowadays, but perhaps no demographic is having a tougher time than Baby Boomers.
Although no one wants to admit it, ageism is alive and well. Yes, it’s illegal to discriminate due to age but, frankly, it’s hard to nail a company for employment discrimination, particularly age discrimination.
So, then how can a Baby Boomer level the playing field when looking for a job? First, when you build a resume, make sure it’s functional, not chronological. Potential employers need a 30 second overview of your most relevant qualifications as they pertain to the position for which you are applying.
Secondly, in order to compete, you have to stay competitive. Make sure your qualifications are up-to-date. If you have no idea what social media or Facebook is, there’s a variety of community colleges that offer classes to help you get up to speed on some of the latest internet tech that companies use.
Thirdly, know a little bit about your prospective employer. While your resume gives them a glimpse of you, you may know virtually nothing about the company you’re applying to. Do a little online sleuthing to find out more about the company, their accomplishments, their challenges and even their hot buttons. It’s amazing what you can find out via a company’s own website, press releases, business journals, and even local newspapers. Nothing says, “I’m the one for the job!” more than taking the time to get to know the prospective company.
Lastly and perhaps most importantly, be confident but not cocky. While your interviewer may not know your exact age, they certainly know that you’re a Baby Boomer. Frame your interview on the expertise your wisdom brings to the company and be confident that you have what THEY need.
While it may take Baby Boomers a bit longer to find employment, there are great companies who are out there looking for exactly what YOU have to offer. Seek them out and deliver what they’re looking for. They’ll have no choice but to say, “you’re hired!”