Feb 162012
 

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One little known tip in changing careers after 50 (and if you think about it, really at any age)  is to dip your toe into the new career and job before you commit to making the career change.

Your research should uncover the nuts and bolts of the new career. You should have a good idea what training you might need, what skills are required to be a successful candidate for the job in your new career. It’s also a good idea to talk to others doing the job.

Go through your network and you’re likely to find someone currently working in your planned new career field. Find out the good the bad and the ugly. Learn what routine and repetitive tasks will be required. It’s important to find out the career ladder and the possibilities for advancement.

Many in changing careers have tried the new career part-time, or worked as a temporary employee. This approach will give you a good feel for the new career and can be a valuable addition to your resume. Another valuable approach is to shadow someone, for a day or two, who currently works in the job and career you are planning to enter.

Learn how others at age 50 and beyond, planned career change, changed careers and found jobs in their new career.

 

Jan 082012
 

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Last time we discussed the importance in your career change planning of generating a robust list of career options. Changing careers at 50 starts with this first step.

The next step is to consider the things you’re good at. You may be considering changing careers but what skills will you take with you to the new career?  By skills I don’t mean your degree or education but what are you really good at? What are your talents?

Are you good at project management? Are you a problem solver? What motivates you? Can you explain things to others? How about getting cooperation from others? What do others tell you what you’re good at? All of these talents, taken together will point you toward jobs that you would enjoy.

Changing careers at any age is rarely easy but if taken a step at a time can lead you to the right job in the right new career.

For ideas on finding that new career at 50, and other career change ideas after 50 go to http://careersafter50.com.  Find out the stories of what others after 50 did to plan and ultimately move into their new careers.

Jan 042012
 

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Successful career change after 50 revolves around one important fact. Rarely does a new career at 50 result in an improvement in your financial situation. On the contrary, many times you have to start on a lower rung on the financial ladder and work your way up to your previous level of compensation and benefits.

Therefore an important component to your career change plan is the level of financial freedom you enjoy. Financial freedom is required to assist in making a career change work at any age and particularly after age 50.

Changing careers takes time and planning. You not only have to select a new career that is compatible to your skills and interests but one that will generate planned financial freedom.

To often a career change takes place without careful consideration of the financial aspects of the change. Perhaps the pay is better but it is eaten up by a longer commute and a sub-par benefit package.  Or the new job pays less but you’re overly optimistic on the timing and amount of pay increases and promotions.

If the financial planning and resources are insufficient to close the money gap, that ideal new career and job could become a worse situation that the job you just left.

To get what you want out of a new career be sure your financial ducks are in order. Reduce your debt, add to your savings every month, pare you required monthly expenses and have a robust emergency fund.

So if you research a new career don’t forget the financial aspects of the career change. Since there is a career change ahead for many of us now is the time to take a careful look at our financial planning.

And your financial planning and the execution of the plan will generate more career change options. This in the final analysis will give you the resources to make a successful career change at 50 and beyond.

For a summary of what others have accomplished in changing careers at 50 you might be interested in their stories of effective career planning after 50. Moreover, our site also has a full range of career planning and job hunting resources.  

 

 

 

 

Jul 132011
 

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Job hunting after 50 can be a significant challenge. Aside from writing a winning resume and cover letter, networking to find the right job and job interview preparation there is still one area that many overlook. And it might be the most critical aspect of effective job hunting and is a valuable after 50 job hunting tip. Continue reading »

May 082011
 

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After 50 job hunting strategies include doing the best job possible in your job interview. You have to increase your skills in this vital area if you want to find the right job.

All job interviews after 50 can be stressful and a bit of a mystery. To be successful and improve the probability of being asked back for additional interviews or getting a formal job offer here are some ideas to get you on the right track in your job interview.

Even though you may have some experience at interviewing it’s not a good idea to wing it. Interview preparation is the key to a successful interview. Do you come across as a positive up-beat individual that can bring value to the position? Your preparation will demonstrate your interest in the job. Preparation will increase your confidence, allow you to give concise measured answers and to ask all the right questions.

Your questions to the interviewer will be used to find out about the employer’s problems and the challenges facing the job. Only with this vital information will you be able to demonstrate you are the best person to solve them. And in job hunting after 50 you’ll have stiff competition so use your cunning and experience to get the job.

A vital part of interview preparation is to hold mock interviews, tape them and critique your answers, demeanor and overall presentation. Make sure you smile, are engaged and are actively listening to the questions and comments of the interviewer.

You start with writing possible tough questions on one side of a flash card. Write out you best answer on the other side. Make sure all your answers are positive, clear and concise.

Even if your last boss was from another planet, and no one got along with him; when asked to describe your worst boss and why, go for the positive answer. At the very least you learned what not to do. Keep going over the mock interview until you get it right. Remember in making a movie, they often go through 10-20-30 or more takes until they get it right.

Everyone in their working life has failures. Don’t try to hide your mistakes and come across as a know it all. Freely admit everything has not been perfect, but weave into your answers what critical things you have learned from them and how they have made you a more valuable employee. If you have a story to add along with a measurable accomplishment, this will give the interviewer added reassurance you are the one for the job.

Make sure the job interview is a two way street. Failure to ask questions about the challenges facing the position, the priorities facing the job and promotional opportunities will lose you points with the interviewer. A more critical result is you will not have adequate information to make a correct decision if offered the job.

You know how to do proper research, search for more information about the employer, go back to your network. They can provide you with valuable information, and maybe a contact within the company.

After 50 job hunting can be a challenge, with the job interview the most stressful, but with proper preparation you can beat out your competition for the right job. For more ideas and information on after 50 job hunting go to http://careersafter50.com  Learn how others over age 50 built career plans that helped them change careers and find new jobs.

May 072011
 

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Job Hunting After 50: Don’t Let Age-Bias Hold You Back!

Is there age discrimination in the job market today? Ask anyone job hunting after age 50 and they will likely say, “Yes.” The problem in most situations it’s a very difficult thing to prove.

With the high level of competition for most jobs; after 50 job hunters and those over 50 looking for a new career seem to be facing an uphill battle for available positions.

Here are five ideas the after 50 job seeker and mid-life career changer can use to level the playing field: 

  1. Change your way of thinking. If you think old, act old and constantly talk about the past: guess what? You will be thought of as old and probably out of touch.

Change your way of thinking. You are not old, you’re experienced. Get physically active. Learn new skills. Study and acquire new qualifications. Think and discuss the future. Stay positive and project the right attitude. Do these things and the age issue will fade away.

2.  Get aggressive in selling the benefits you offer a prospective employer. Use your cunning and experience to market yourself against younger candidates. You have a record of accomplishments that match up well with the employer’s needs. Take advantage of this fact.

In a job interview take the issue of age head on. Weave into your interview answers that you are physically active, have learned a variety of new skills in the past two years and have effectively worked for a variety of younger supervisors. Don’t leave these unspoken questions unanswered as they may be negatively used against you at decision time.

3. Focus on one job at a time. Even though you may be skilled and could qualify for a number of varied jobs your job hunting focus should be to go after only one job at a time. This means to focus like a laser on the employer’s needs. Write your resume and cover letter to emphasize accomplishments that fit the employer’s template for the open position. Remove anything from your resume that may detract from their attention on this one job.

Your goal as a mid-career job hunter is to meet and exceed the job’s requirements. If in your experience you performed a function only about 5% of the time and it’s the number one need for the employer amplify your skills in this key area.

For the next job this function may not even be listed so your resume writing plan is to always match the employer’s needs. It’s a bit more work but it will pay off.

4. Clean up your resume. Take out experience over 15 years old. Remove dates of college graduation. Strongly emphasize your strengths and accomplishments. Make sure as mentioned previously that your skills and accomplishments match as closely as possible what the employer is looking for.

When finished ask yourself, “Would I hire this person for this position?” If your answer is a strong, “Yes,” you’ve got a powerful resume. If the answer is, “No,” you’ve got some more work to do.

 5. Selling the benefits of a product is a successful marketing approach. So in marketing “You,” the benefits and value you bring to the job will be your most telling argument.

No employer is looking for twenty-five years experience but is much more interested in what results you’ll achieve if offered the job. Your accomplishments demonstrate a history of providing a financial benefit to your previous employers and it’s up to you to show how you can be just as productive in your new position.

As a job hunter after age 50, you must highlight your strengths and the age issue will fade into the background. For a more detailed discussion of careers after 50 and career change planning after 50 our site http://careersafter50.com has a wealth of information you can use right now.

Apr 232011
 

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Career Planning Management Ideas to get your stalled career moving. You’ve evaluated your career progress against your written career plan and find you are not advancing as planned. Or perhaps there appears to be something lacking in your career, maybe not the expected degree of satisfaction you had planned. Continue reading »

Mar 262011
 

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You’re over 50 and if you’re working that’s great. If you’re between jobs this post is really for both of you. Continue reading »

Feb 272011
 

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Career changers after 50 have both an advantage and a disadvantage in networking. One their rolodex should be well stocked. Two, it may have been years since they went to people they know for assistance in finding a job.

Thus, they may be aprehensive to involve others in their job hunt. To overcome this reluctance, remember most jobs are found in the hidden job market through networking.

Lets start from the easy to the more difficult. Start with friends, relatives and former co-workers. Hone you networking skills working with people you know. Practice your message. Get it down to 20 or so seconds. What do you do? What are your skills? What do you want to do? Can they help or can they introduce you to someone who might be able to help you?

Now we contact the referrals with the same message. Find others you can talk to about the suggested career. Use local career related groups. Search Linkedin.com. Go to seminars and workshops and local networking gatherings. Plan each action in advance. Keep good records, thank everyone, and when you can offer to assist others do so.

In no time you’ll be having dozens of people helping you in your career change. Through this method your chances of finding the right career  go way up rather than working solo.

Feb 222011
 

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Career change at 50 can lead you down a number of paths. It’s understood that in any journey a good roadmap is a must (with a nod to a GPS). How you put together and work your plan for your career change will greatly determine your end results.