Archive for older worker

Anna D. Banks, Basic Author

By Anna D. Banks, GCDF

Recent surveys have shown that there are more seniors who are now returning or sticking on to their jobs than ever before! Today, there are more 50+ workers working in the job market than at any time in the past. The terms ‘white-collar’ and ‘blue-collar’ workers have now been joined by a third adage, which is, ‘The Silver-collar worker’.

With over 77 million baby boomers in the United States and only 45 million Generation-X’ers, the difference in numbers clearly define a wide gap that needs to be filled by various strategies. So, the competition in the workplace between the two generations has increased twofold over the past ten years. So, if you happen to be a baby boomer on the look out for a job, then here are a couple of resume, cover letter and interview strategies to help you get started:

Resume Strategies for the 50+

• The thumb rule for all senior workers is to put at least 15 years worth of service on the resume.
• Don’t emphasize on dates. Never list your birth date and omit all college graduation dates that are more than 10 years old.
• Try toning down the job titles that you have listed on your resume so as to not seem overqualified. For instance, you can put down ‘senior manager’ instead of ‘Vice President’.
• Make sure you list all the professional courses and development activities that you have attended as this shows that you are willing to learn.
• List all the technological and computer skills that you possess.
• Highlight accomplishments, achievements and results that set you apart from the other candidates.

Cover Letter Strategies for Senior Workers

• Older workers tend to be proud of their work histories and are prone to putting self-applauding statements in their cover letters. With so much work experience, it is probably best you don’t put such cumulative experience statements in your cover letter. Instead of bragging, stick to using statements like ‘extensive experience’ or ‘significant experience’.
• An autobiography letter that rehashes your entire job history that is already on your resume isn’t a good idea. But, as an older worker it is more harmful as it draws attention to your age.
• Add in your cover letter that you are flexible, adaptable and are willing to learn.

Job Interview Strategies for Older Workers

When you go for a job interview, remember that you will probably be interviewed by someone who is younger than you, so don’t get embarrassed or unnerved by the situation.

• Start by stressing on how you are so willing to work and learn. Interviews claim that the biggest setback when it comes to hiring older workers is that most of the time their skills are outdated and they aren’t willing to learn.
• Suggest that you have an unsurpassable work ethic, which could be possible as compared to the younger workers.
• Convince you potential employers that your maturity will only be advantageous to them as your past experience makes you wiser in problem-solving situations.

© 2008 Anna D. Banks, GCDF

ANNA D. BANKS, GCDF, is a passionate advocate for baby boomers in exploring their priorities, planning and setting goals for the next stage of their lives. Assisting her clients to attract and build a professional and personal life consistent with their values is not just a goal of Anna’s, it’s her passion. Her diverse work experience in business, education and financial services enables her to help the diverse population of baby-boomers with their life, career, and personal finance coaching needs. Anna is currently Adjunct Faculty at Essex County College, where she teaches Career Development & Management. Please place a post on or email your questions to me at
Author’s Note:
Do you have any questions about career development or lifestyle changes for Baby Boomers, which you think others, like you, would want to know the answers? Please place a post on or email your questions to me at

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This is an important step toward easing the brain drain….

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Chairman Herb Kohl (D-WI) and Ranking Member Gordon H. Smith (R-OR) of the U.S. Senate Special Committee on Aging joined today in releasing the findings of the Taskforce on the Aging of the American Workforce. The taskforce was created at the request of Senators Kohl and Smith in an effort to expand opportunities for older Americans choosing to remain in the workforce, and to develop proposals to address the challenges and opportunities of an aging workforce.

“I’m glad to finally be receiving this report. Since this taskforce convened in May 2006, nearly 5 million baby boomers have reached retirement age,” said Senator Kohl. “While the report provides a broad overview of several legal and regulatory barriers, what we really need to focus on is creating innovative workplace practices and providing attractive employer benefits to facilitate the hiring and retention of older workers.”

“By 2025 labor force growth is expected to be less than a fifth of what it is today,” said Senator Smith. “The goal of the taskforce is to prevent this dramatic decline through strategies that encourage extended work life and remove barriers that hinder seniors from working longer. This report is a good first step in what must be an on-going effort to ensure the door stays open for our seniors who wish to remain an active part of the U.S. workforce.”

The interagency effort was launched in May 2006 to focus on the aging of the American workforce and the impact of this demographic change. The Taskforce on the Aging of the American Workforce was charged with two primary goals: (1) identifying strategies to enhance the ability of older Americans to remain in or re-enter the labor market and pursue self-employment opportunities; and (2) identifying strategies to enable businesses to take full advantage of this skilled labor pool.

The report presents strategies developed by the taskforce to address the most significant issues related to the aging of the American workforce. Among other suggestions, the taskforce recommends creating an interagency group to inventory the legal and regulatory barriers and disincentives to employment of older workers. The interagency will identify the pros and cons of specific approaches to addressing each barrier. The taskforce also recommends making educational resources on retirement and financial literacy available to older workers at One-Stop Career Centers and local Social Security Administration offices.

Kohl is currently working with Special Committee on Aging Ranking Member Gordon H. Smith (R-OR on a bill that would remove barriers to working longer and incentivize employers to hire older workers.

The U.S. Senate Special Committee on Aging plans to hold a hearing in the spring on what the federal government can do to engage and retain older workers. The Committee will highlight some of the federal government’s current best practices in this arena, and look to ways improvements can be made. A second bill will likely be introduced around this time to make the federal government’s current hiring practices and procedures more friendly to older workers and will focus on increasing work schedule flexibility and phased retirement options.

Last year, Chairman Kohl introduced two bills: the Older Worker Opportunity Act of 2007 (S.709) and the Health Care and Training for Older Workers Act (S.708), both of which would give older Americans the opportunity to work longer if they so choose and offer incentives to businesses for employing older workers.

The Taskforce on the Aging of the American Workforce is composed of senior representatives from nine federal agencies: the Departments of Commerce, Education, Health and Human Services, Labor, Transportation, and Treasury; the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission; Small Business Administration; and Social Security Administration. The Taskforce is chaired by Assistant Secretary of Labor for Employment and Training, Emily Stover DeRocco.

Download your copy here Aging Workforce Taskforce Report

Categories : Lifestyle
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Benefits of Hiring Older Workers

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By Anna D. Banks, GCDF

Yes, we are now experiencing what is called ‘The Great Worker Shortage’. The first few baby boomers, whose very mass has dominated the labor force, will reach the age of 62 in the year 2008 and will start retiring. And to add to this already terrible nightmare, there aren’t many younger workers or ‘baby busters’ as they are called, to replace these senior workers in the workplace.

Reports have shown that there are as many as ten million workers that will be required at the end of the decade. This would pose as a potentially dire circumstance to all companies, wouldn’t it? However, there isn’t any need to panic. As a business owner, it is wise for you to examine your employment needs and requirements for the coming five years. Especially, think about hiring senior workers – those workers who are scheduled for retirement.

While the 50 plus workers are sometimes slated as being less productive, more costly and somewhat set in their ways, recent studies have capsized many age-old stereotypes. Yes, older workers have demonstrated that they can tackle any job well even today.

Fortunately, for most companies, there is a satisfactory solution, more senior workers are willing to continue working and more employers are in need of their talents. In many places, the skills of older workers are preferred over their younger counterparts.

The Benefits of Hiring Senior Workers

Yes, if baby boomers do intend on working during their retirement years, it will definitely come as good news to most employers. Incidentally, most senior workers are blessed with the assets and skills that companies are looking for. Here are a few benefits of working with senior workers:

•Experience – Older workers know the inside-outs of what it is to work for years on end. From weathering different bosses to business-cycle dips to management trends, their massive sphere of knowledge alone means that companies would not have to spend money and time in training them.

•Work Ethics – 50 plus workers are considered to be more dependable and determined and always remain task-focused. These traits are a good example for their younger workers.

•Customer Servicing – Most employers are hiring senior workers because they have proven to be more mature emotionally and can also relate to the customers better. Studies have shown that verbal communication along with a whole host of other skills always increases with age.

•Loyalty – Unlike their younger brethren, older workers are less likely to change jobs or job-hop. And, it is common knowledge that the lesser the turnover, the more money is saved.

•Motivation – Amongst all the employees in a workplace, older workers are considered to be the most motivated in most companies. 50 plus workers are found to be more motivated than their younger colleagues. And, such highly motivated employees are more likely to satisfy customers, control costs and affect product quality.

While older workers may be less capable of delivering out-of-the-box, groundbreaking new ideas, they are better than their younger partners at ‘experimental innovation’, which means they help develop new ideas from current practices. In order to balance the scales, companies require both sets of employees – the older workers as well as the younger ones.

© 2007 Anna D. Banks, GCDF

Author’s Note:
Do you have any questions about career development or lifestyle changes for Baby Boomers, which you think others, like you, would want to know the answers? Please email your questions to or post a message on this blog?

Categories : Careers, Success Skills
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