Liz Wolgemuth writes an excellent column, "The Older-Worker Advantage," on page 76 of the U.S. News and World Report of Dec 15/22, 2008, that mirrors an article I published several years ago. I'd like to highlight her ten points, because they are very valid, and I've been living most of them...
The article is subtitled: 10 reasons that seasoned employees can win the job hunt.
1. You understand recessions.
2. You're willing to work part time.
3. You have real-life experiences.
4. You want to be challenged.
5. You're healthier.
6. You can control your emotions.
7. Your network is bigger.
8. You're loyal and reliable
9. You want to learn.
10. You're more satisfied with your job and benefits.
Understanding recessions is clearly true. Workers in this 50s and especially their 60s have been through many business cycles and can better appreciate that life goes on... the cycles will always be there.
I decided to continue my career as a professor and department chair at a regional state university from 65 to 70. It was the right decision. These have been the best work years of my life... although changes in the past year have made this final year tougher than I would have hoped.
This points out, of course, the pitfalls of making the generalizations of the 10 points, above. You will see them differently from the low 50s than from the mid-60s or the beyond 70s. Physically, the body does begin to deteriorate, noticeably. Maintaining a decent exercise regimen becomes increasingly necessary in order to do what your mind tells you to do. I do continue to enjoy challenges, but I do want to face them on my terms. I can generally control my emotions better, but I do find I am often less tolerant of incompetence around me. What do you find?
"You want to learn" is an interesting suggestion. I think this applies more now than in an earlier time, for our age group, but I also know many older workers who still resist learning. How can we discriminate on this issue?
I have not commented directly on several of the points, I will leave that to my readers, or a future post. I'd love to hear your thoughts.
Note: As I approach that actual retirement date of June 13, I will try to be more active in getting regular posts to this blog. Thank you for your patience, and I look forward to a good dialogue.
Dr. Bill - I love to share. I hope you do to. ;-)