Nov 1st, 2011 | By Dr Jerry D Elrod | Category: Senior Moments Blog

The Crisis of Unemployment

The unemployment  statistics do not bode well, particularly if you are an older part of the working generaton.  Losing one’s job at 50 can spell long term difficulty and disappointment for reemployment. While there may be age discrimination at work, proving that is not always easy to do.  Finding employment in your previous field of expertise is a growing unlikelihood.  Competing with so many persons who are younger, less experienced and thus requirng less income, is another factor at work. Standing in long unemployment lines that far exceed the number of positions open is both a discouraging and exhausting experience.

Okay, smart guy, what are my options?

  • Most often cited as a viable option is retraining.  What are the kinds of jobs you feel, with adequate training and skill upgrades, you could qualify to do?
  • Try to identify, in your community, those positions which might be suitable and do have openings.
  • Visit the community college to determine what fields have courses you could take that interest you.
  • Set aside some of your resources to be able to sign up for those opportunities.
  • In your spare time, explore with potential employers what they would expect of a person, your age, in terms of being a qualified applicant.
  • Explore an employer’s willingness to offer training for a skilled position.
  • Be willing to take a lesser position and do the old fashioned approach of “working your way up.”

Consider the Unusual

Here are some more suggestions that are a little more unusual for job-seekers.  Visit non profit organizations, who may not be able to pay the wage you would like, but, at least, gives you a leg up for something to do and to add to your resume.  Consider volunteering to allow for an indication to a potential employer that you are a willing worker.

Consider positions that no one else will consider.  You will need to identify those in your community.  However, there are jobs which, while lacking in desirability, may be open and provide a pay check until you can locate other options.

Apply in places where there seems to be high turnover.  Such places are Convenience Stores, Restaurants, Fast Food places, Janitorial services, landscape services and others that may appear and appeal to you in your community or neighborhood.

Invent a job.  What is the lawn service or housecleaning situation in your neighborhood?  Are there elderly neighbors who need non-medical care in their home? What equipment do you have?  What start up costs would be necessary?  How could you identify additional help?  What are liability issues?

Are there part time positions that could be linked together to provide the equivalent of a full time job?  Have you looked into those companies that do flex time and might have positions which fit your schedule and skill level?

Search other than the want ads or Craig’s List.  Keep those as a daily discipline, but expand beyond them to bulletin boards in businesses and other locations not always shopped.

While many of these may be beyond your own self expectations, the issue may be more critical in finding a job that you could do than in finding one that compliments your ego.  This is no small matter.  One’s self image and self respect are highly important to preserve.  This may require and entail your finding someone with whom you can work through the emotional dynamics that come with doing a job search.  Doing so may better enable you to present yourself in a more positive light.

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