Career Calling

July 15, 2015

Age as a Benefit to Your Job Search

 

A friend of mine shared a copy of the AARP Bulletin with me. It featured an article by the organization’s CEO, Jo Ann Jenkins, on the benefits older workers bring to employers. Jenkins moved to AARP after working in government for 25 years. Most people assume such transitions are impossible. Jenkins argues that this is not true. The number of employees in the workforce who are 50+ is growing despite the fact that some employers still practice age discrimination.

Older workers bring a wide range of benefits to employers. The most obvious is experience. However, employers also note that older workers bring reliability and knowledge. They mentor less experienced employees. Jenkins claims that these benefits outweigh any increased costs. She ends her article with these simple but strong words: “Experience adds value.”

Some employers will always want to hire younger workers. Why? They will work for a lower wage, and they will be easier to manipulate. I often tell clients who are worried about age discrimination that it can work in their favor because it will keep them from working for a bad boss or a company that does not want to pay its employees fairly. Any prospective employee – old or young – should be evaluated on their contribution, not their age.

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