Wednesday, November 2, 2011

A Career Doctor for the “Laid-Off at 50+” Bug

Photo Credit - Flickr Creative Common

Have you always worked hard, made the right career choices, taken good care of yourself, and been a very successful person? In generations past, those that did usually enjoyed a stable and healthy career peak as they hit the mile stone of turning 50.

That was then, and this is now. The Great Recession ailment has had many Americans being diagnosed with the “laid-off at 50+” bug making the rounds.

The prognosis for many has seemed bleak with those finding themselves unemployed at 50+ having a hard time finding a cure. The old tried and true treatments may not work as they once did.

The good news is the Career Doctor is in – a specialist with an effective new treatment for many.

Kathy Bernard is a Career Doctor with, where she leads free webinars on a variety of subjects including:

* 50 top tips to land a job after 50

* How to learn about and then impress hiring companies

* How to SHOW and TELL you are the best job candidate

* Outmaneuvering the online application system

Kathy Bernard is the internationally known author of the Get a Job! Tips blog. She is also a career coach, webinar and workshop speaker, and award-winning corporate communications leader based in St. Louis, Missouri.

Career Doctor Bernard wants to help you recover from the unemployment bug and get better! Bernard started conducting the “Top Tips for Landing a Job after 50” webinars in December, 2010. She has done 25 so far with more scheduled for November and December. This career doctor knows, “You are not finished at 50+!”

Bernard summarizes, “Finding a job is tough for anyone nowadays, but it is particularly hard if you are over 50. Despite the difficulty, landing a great, well paying job after 50 is possible … if you take steps now to improve your odds.”

In her free webinar, you will discover 50 ways to improve your chances of getting hired. Bernard notes, “We will even send you all 50 tips in printable format so you can get started right away.” She details, “In just 60 minutes, you’ll learn how to do the following.”

* Position yourself as the solution to a company’s problems
* Play up your strengths and shore up your weaknesses
* Identify organizations that actively seek out experienced workers
* Convince younger hiring managers that your experience is a plus and not a threat
* Demonstrate your passion, vitality and accomplishments in a way that can get you hired
* Implement more than a dozen “fast forward” tips that will help you stand out immediately

The response in the community has been huge. It is's most well attended webinar. Bernard offers, “We average 400-600 attendees for it, which just tells you what the incredible need is for such services to help Baby Boomers and beyond.”

She notes, “Those attendees who have reached out to me afterwards have been very enthusiastic, because they have said they found the information instantly usable, complete and uplifting.” Her blog testimonial page bears this out.

Bernard explains what she has seen as the main differences for laid off workers over 50 as opposed to other laid off workers. “I have found that job seekers over 50 in general work harder to try to find work than any other age group. They actively seek out help, they network, follow-up, help other job seekers and constantly reinvent themselves, yet still they are finding it very hard to find work.”

She continues, “I am amazed by their energy and tenacity and am glad to be a part of such a dynamic, but often discounted group. I am 52 years old and am astonished and sometimes even shocked that the business world seems to be putting out to pasture the very people who worked so hard to help them succeed and who still very much want to work hard to help them grow now.”

Bernard feels there are many benefits to employers that hire someone with more age and experience. “They are willing to work very hard. They are dependable and a great team member.”

She provides, “That is not just me saying that. A Mature Workers Alliance survey of Human Resource managers from 400 companies with 50 or more employees have said that the top attributes of seasoned workers are the following.”

* Loyalty/dedication
* Commitment to quality
* Dependability
* Strong performance record
* Basic math, reading and writing skills
* Solid job/industry experience
* Ability to get along well with coworkers

Bernard answers whether employers have a bias right now in hiring older workers. “I definitely believe there is a bias against seasoned workers. I meet with so many capable over 50 employees that are not given a change to shine in open positions that they could easily handle.”

She notes the main misconceptions leading to a possible hiring bias. “Companies seem to think seasoned workers are out of touch with technology, resistant to change, and expensive. I contend that their dependability, energy, and hard work make them an excellent business investment in reality.”

She provides the easiest ways for older workers to combat misconceptions. “Personify vibrancy, technical know-how, a willingness to learn new things (even before they are hired for the job), and an open nature willing to work with and accept all types of people.”

The Business Case for Workers Age 50+: Planning for Tomorrow’s Talent Needs in Today’s Competitive Environment report “debunks many of the widely held misperceptions about the costs of older workers and demonstrates that companies should view 50+ workers as an essential part of the plan to meet their workforce needs.”

Bernard reveals how society and younger generations may benefit from hiring older workers. “Seasoned workers can bring incredible knowledge from their past experiences, as well as a sense of how business works and what pitfalls to avoid.”

She points out, “Too often, naive new employees can run full-tilt into expensive mistakes. More experienced and tested workers can bring some rational decision making into the process saving companies thousands of dollars.”

She shares her best advice for those over 50 looking for a job in this business climate. “ First, up your game - know technology and new techniques better than people younger than you, even if that means learning it now on your own time and your own dime. Companies are not going to hire you for job duties that no longer exist. You have to prepare for the hot jobs now.”

“Second, consider alternative work such as contract, temporary, franchise opportunities, part time work, starting your own company, etc. Standard 40-hour week jobs are becoming increasingly rare, so embrace alternative work.”

Robert Shindell, CEO of concludes, “Top 50 Tips for Landing a Job after 50” featuring Kathy Bernard has been , and continues to be, one of our most popular webinar offerings. Kathy’s practical and tactical approach to helping those over 50 become more competitive in the job market, as well as her amazing presentation style, has helped thousands of individuals.”

“ and our Career Center Tool Box continually seek to provide information as well as ideas and inspiration to all who are dealing with unemployment and underemployment. Kathy’s commitment to helping those in need is second to none, and we are honored to have her as part of our team.”

Career Doctor and internationally known career blog author Kathy Bernard welcomes connection invitations through her profile on LinkedIn.

You can sign up for Kathy Bernard’s next “Top 50 Tips for Getting a Job After 50 “ webinar scheduled for Monday, November 21 here.

It just might be the cure you have been searching for. Many have seen healing results.

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Related AXcess News Article: Americans Stepping Up – The Power of One in Helping Job Seekers

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