Are You An Older Worker Who Needs A New Resume Idea?
Lots of older job seekers are getting very frustrated. As unemployment has spiked, older workers got hit really hard. Some of them have been out of work for several months. Some have been out of work for years. Many complain that they cannot even get their foot in the door to speak to a hiring manager.
Is this all age discrimination, or is some of it based upon the fact that an old resume template can date an older worker? Most of us in the over 50 age group learned to write our resumes decades ago. The format and employer expectations have changed during that time. While we may have done a good job learning new skills and developing our own business experience, we may not have checked up on the latest resume formats!
Resume Ideas For Over 50 Workers
Get some quick tips here. It may pay off to start here, and then do more research on your own. You may even want to invest in a professional resume service if it has been a long time since you have had to hunt for a job. I cannot claim that this is a comprehensive guide to writing a resume.
Forget the 1 page rule. If you have decades of valuable experience and a large skill set, you may need to add more pages. Do not write a novel, but favor adding a second page instead of reducing your one page wonder to a tiny font. or leaving out some key points.
One size does not fit all! In the old days, we could produce one resume, copy it, and send it out to dozens of employers. These days, it pays to modify a resume to highlight the skills and experience that will help you get a particular job. This advice also applies to your cover letter.
What can you do for me? We used to have a statement of our goals in the heading of our resumes. We might say something about our vision of a perfect job. Employers, these days, are more interested in their vision of a perfect employee. You can research the company, and decide if you want to work for the employer. But please replace this personal goals statement with a statement about how you are a good fit for the job you want to get!
Do some trimming. If you are looking for a high technology job, your new employer may not be interested in your FORTRAN or COBOL skills from the 1980s. Of course, if the employer has legacy systems to support, this may be a big interest to them. This goes back to the point about developing unique resumes for each job you want to apply for. You may leave out some older skills, or just add a line about having “legacy” skills you could discuss in an interview. The important thing will be to focus on the skills and experience that the employer asks for on the job request so you can get that first interview.
Are You An Older Worker Who Needs A new Job?
Get some tips on developing an older workers resume that can give you a new start! Get more advice at Over 50 Jobs.
More tips for older workers
Do you sometimes look at people and wonder how on earth they got into the career they are in that seems so right for them. And yet you, at whatever age you are, are still stumbling along still asking yourself “How do I find the right career for me?”.
Here are 5 things to think about that will help you through the career planning process of finding the right career.
1) Your Hobbies
Think about what you like to do in your free time and what you’re good at. Do you like working with your hands? With your mind? Are you good with people? Do you prefer being alone? Do you coach a team or tutor kids? Spend time outdoors in nature? Do you like numbers? Puzzles? Writing? Particular kinds of video games? There are careers out there that make use of your skills and interests…and sometimes they’re not obvious. As an example, just because you’re a great little league coach doesn’t mean you should be a professional coach. But you do embrace leadership skills, which apply to a variety of careers and can guide you in your career search. Maybe you love music – you can work for an ad agency, or a theater, represent musicians, open a music club, work for a non-profit to get instruments into schools…Or maybe you love sports statistics – you can become an accountant or a mortgage banker or work for a sports team….You just need to do some research to connect the dots.
2) Your Values
What’s important to you? Is it having lots of free time? Lots of money? Having a big family? Following a dream? Living in the city? The country? The suburbs? Living overseas? All of these things play a role in the career opportunities that will fit you and be available to you. For example, if you’re obsessed with the auto industry but are set on living near your ranch in Wyoming, you probably have to choose one or the other. If you want to live in New York City and have five kids, you’re probably going to have to choose a career where you can make a lot of money. To find the right career, it’s important to be in touch with your values.
3) The Type of Life You Want
Do you want a conventional life where you stay on one path, live in one city and settle down young to start a family? Or do you want an adventurous life where you take big risks, chase big ideas, and frequently change cities? The adventurous path may be more likely to blur job and life together. For example, if you’re a war photographer or a rock musician, your career and life kind of become one. If you know you want a conventional life, you can generally rule out careers like these. At the same time, if you know you want an adventurous life, you can probably rule out most office jobs. It’s always possible to be a librarian by day and a traveling cliff diver on weekends, but it really comes down to where you want to find your adventure every day.
4) Your Favorite & Best Classes At School
What do you enjoy learning and reading about, or watching documentaries? What subjects have you found very natural and easy to understand. Are you great at science? Maths? Or do you hate science and math but love words? Analyzing what types of information interest you and suit your learning style is a great step towards finding the right career.
5) What You’re Willing To Sacrifice
The expression “nothing comes for free” exists for a reason. If you’re a young, corporate lawyer or investment banker getting paid the big bucks, you’re probably going to have close to zero free time. Perhaps you’re an airline pilot or a truck driver who has to spend a lot of time away from home. If you want to become a college professor, you’re going to be in school a long time to get that PhD. If you want to be a famous actress, you’re going to have to humiliate yourself at casting calls and tryouts where your talents and looks will be picked apart by a panel of others. What is your threshold for all of this? It helps to ask this question and be in touch with what you’re willing to sacrifice for your career. Sometimes it’s tough to know in advance, but the sooner you can figure it out the more you can avoid the tough discoveries that come from learning your career exceeds your threshold after you’ve settled into a path.
Guest Author: Marc Luber
Finding the right career and the career planning process can be tricky, but you’ll find lots of help at http://CareersOutThere.com. Careers Out There is a video interview show that helps you in every episode by profiling a different type of career. Our guests are real professionals who work in each career path and tell us what their jobs are really like, how you can break in and how to succeed once you’re there. I’m, the author of this article and the host of the show. I look forward to seeing you there and helping you out – so click over to Careers Out There so we can start helping you now.
Related article: Is Your Next Step A Career Shift?
Contact Jenni at BoomersNextStep for Career Counselling and Coaching.
You may have come across the term ‘elevator pitch’ recently during your job search. Basically, this term refers to the brief sixty-second speech that people use to describe the product or service they offer to others. And while this speech may not be part of your regular discourse, it must be delivered in a very concise and compelling way, and have the necessary attracting points that will entice the interests of employers around you.
For all job seekers, it is important to learn how to create a compelling elevator speech. In order to do so, you must be familiar with the idea of professional branding and the concept of enhancing your brand to promote yourself as well as your career. More often than not, personal branding through a properly drafted elevator speech will allow you to create a good image for yourself which you can use for a successful job search. This will allow you to differentiate yourself from other applicants who may be vying for the same position.
You must understand that good personal branding will play an important part in your elevator pitch. This will serve as a mini presentation of what you can do to get over the all too common phrases like “what can you do for us” and “tell us about yourself”. An effective elevator pitch is capable of conveying to your audience that you are a professional, and this must be done in such a way that your speech will not only address your unique selling points but the concerns of your listener as well.
But how do you create an effective elevator pitch for your job search? With an honest evaluation of yourself and thorough introspection, you can develop your own elevator pitch even without the help of a career coach. To begin with, you need to ask yourself the following questions:
- What is my main objective for my job search and what is my job target?
- Who are the persons I am planning to talk to about hiring me?
- What is my unique selling point?
- What are the problems currently faced by my audience?
- What can I do to help them solve it?
- What are the characteristics I have that sets me apart from other applicants?
- What are benefits of my work experience which I can bring in to my new work environment?
As you create your elevator pitch, try to incorporate all these elements in a short presentation that you can deliver in no more than sixty seconds. Once you assess the correct answers to the above questions, you will have everything you need to create an effective and compelling elevator pitch. Don’t worry too much about being eloquent because a concise and direct speech can help you get the attention you need to secure the job interview you have been waiting for.
Candace Davies, Owner of A+ Resumes for Teachers is a Global Career Management Professional dedicated to assisting educators worldwide leverage their strengths, accomplishments, and unique selling points to capture their dream career. Her team has successfully assisted 3500+ education professionals by transforming their talents into concise documents that secure numerous interviews.
Please visit her at http://resumes-for-teachers.com or send an email to email@example.com
With the dismal announcement of Zero Job Growth flooding the internet from sources as Bureau of Labor Statistics, CNN Money, The Huffington Post, and numerous other highly regarded informational channels, how does a job seeker keep a positive attitude?
When I began writing this article, I admit, I was a little hungry. It reminded me of how similar planning a meal is to looking for a job in a tight market.
Basic Recipe: One practical job search tip in keeping motivated is to plan out your 8-5 day by creating a weekly calendar of “to do” activities. One might call these activities your grocery list. Include the fundamental time for job-board searches, direct marketing and research. Keep a grocery list of your weekly activities and check them off when completed to boost your sense of accomplishment.
Flavor: Then add a little flavor by staying current in your industry. Schedule and attend a couple of community network meetings every week, such as Chamber of Commerce, or an industry related gathering.
Spice: Kick it up with scheduled network time. 65-75% of your calendar should be planned with this vital ingredient. Although the internet has made this chore so much easier with online social networks (LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter and etc.), nothing surpasses face-to-face time.
Sweetener: Schedule an hour or two during your week to give back. Volunteer to assist with a local charity group. Get involved. Besides this activity being a great internal network with a broad array of board members (who are Key Decision Makers in the corporate world), it is a great way to stimulate the juices of once again being needed, and furnish you with the warm fuzzy to stay motivated.
Bam: Take advantage of being home. Put away the job search and spend time with the family in the evenings and weekends. Plan interactive time such as board games, helping with homework, going to the park, and visiting the neighbors. Savor the moments. This is special time that makes it all worthwhile.
Smell the Aroma: As the above ingredients are simmering, use your nose to sniff out current news articles relevant to your industry and locate businesses that are experiencing changes. This is your key to investigate a possible niche for you to do a little direct target marketing.
Taste: A good cook needs to be able to taste the brew. The same goes for a good job searcher needing to develop an understanding of what flavors and spices are working best. Follow up on your activities with phone calls and schedule one-on-one meetings with Key Decision Makers.
Rather than throwing in the apron, or moping around in your bathrobe, shake up your routine recipe. Stir the above mixture until it sizzles to find your right motivational flavor! Stay hopeful, after all, a Zero Job Growth Market is slightly better than a Negative Market!
We would enjoy hearing from you. Please share your “recipe” with our readers on tips of how you have stayed positive in this down economy. http://jobinterview-practice.com/
- How to Use LinkedIn for Your Job Search (boomersnextstep.com)
- How to Use Social Media to Enhance Your Resume and Boost Your Job Search (commonwealthmgmt.com)
The cover letter accompanies your resume as part of your job application ‘pack’ and is meant to expound on information in the resume. History is replete with job applicants that missed out on important opportunities simply because they did not send a cover page. There is no standard length of a cover letter but ideally it should be no longer than one page and a maximum of three paragraphs. You want to catch the recruiter’s attention as quickly as possible and a long cover page is unlikely to do that. Candidates must make the cover letter work to their advantage and be the gateway to landing that all important interview.
So whereas it would be easy to simply answer ‘Yes!’ on whether you need a cover letter, a look at the reasons why it is important would provide for a much more plausible argument for this short but vital document in your job application.
* A snapshot into your way of thinking – Most recruiters are looking for someone that stands out from the crowd and that can clearly demonstrate how they will fit in to the organization if recruited. One can show what they can bring into the organization as opposed to just what they expect to gain by getting hired. Where two or more candidates are practically dead even in academic qualification and experience, a compelling cover page can provide that vital tipping point for one to secure an interview or be hired for the job.
* Ability to write – A cover letter more than the resume provides a good example of your writing capabilities. Written communication has and will continue to be an important skill in today’s organizational environment. Therefore, choice of grammar, language, punctuation and spelling must be carefully considered. Mastery of grammar and the articulation of ideas is a strong statement of your professionalism and would provided additional impetus for the recruiter to pick you out from other applicants.
* Your personality – A cover letter gives you a better platform to be yourself and show your personality than the resume does. The resume must follow a certain structured format which makes it very formal with little flexibility. Your resume lists your education and experience but your cover letter allows you to demonstrate these skills and your knowledge of the work you will be expected to do.
* Address concerns – The cover letter can be used to put to rest certain uncomfortable issues that the recruiter may already know or may find out about you. For instance, in this era of technology and heavy use of social networking websites, many employers may not like what they find out about you in case they decide to look you up on the internet. It is better if you proactively raise the issue and briefly explain the circumstances on your cover letter as opposed to the recruiter finding out on their own.
* Use the cover letter to tell your story – People usually remember personal stories more than they do a bland text. You can catch the attention of the recruiter by relating a story that cements your interest in the job. For instance, if you are looking for a job in a food production company, you can talk about how you grew up eating their products. That said, the stories must be truthful as lying will have the exact opposite effect.
So based on these reasons, it is increasingly clear that accompanying your application with a cover letter presents more opportunities to sell yourself and thus increases your chances of being hired for the job.
Did you find this article helpful? If so, I encourage you to read how to write a resume cover letter and information on how to write a resume for a job.
- The 7 parts of a powerful interview-getting cover letter (vickandassociates.com)
- 5 Tips to Writing an Excellent Cover Letter (vickandassociates.com)
- Tips For Writing Persuasive Cover Letters (boomersnextstep.com)
For your executive job search, you need to remember that you are a product for sale and the employer or company hiring is the customer with a substantial need to fill at the executive level. When crafting your executive resume, be sure to follow these three elements:
Demonstrate You Can Exceed Their Needs.
An organization hiring at the executive level has a critical need the Board of Directors must fulfill and it’s important to understand that time is of the essence. The longer a period of time the position remains empty, the more risk the organization or company has. Using this information to your advantage, ensure that your executive resume is crafted specifically to perfectly fit the existing and future needs of the company you’re interviewing. Let them know you are able to meet and exceed their company goals.
Demonstrate Professional Value.
In business, generally speaking, you can offer the least expensive product or a product or service with the best value. It is not feasible to offer both. The same holds true when investing in people at the executive level and when discussing compensation. These organizations will purchase the least expensive office supplies, but you can be sure they will invest properly in business executives to carry the organization to the next level.
To further demonstrate your professional value, be sure to highlight your past successes in your career history. Always use hard and quantifiable numbers to build your story which can include sales numbers, revenue growth, cost reductions, or milestones met or exceeded. Such quantifiable data will help build your worth in your executive resume and give you maximum impact to get the job.
Positively Stun Your Prospect.
Even at the executive level, employment recruiters and Human Resources departments review countless resumes and give just a second to each unless there are elements that help stand you out from the crowd. If you don’t include formatting and text that catches the reader, you may find yourself in the dreaded trash pile.
Use the current needs of the company to add some examples and language into both your executive resume and cover letter so that the reader will be able to relate better. You’ll want to really understand the goals of the company you’re interviewing for so you can properly tailor your writing to meet their needs. You can use certain visual text elements including bold and italics, but use sparingly so you don’t distract the reader.
Jessica Peloski is an executive for a major National Corporation and writes articles on how to write an executive resume. For more information, please visit http://www.ExecutiveResumeSecrets.com/how-to-write-an-executive-resume
- Should You Call a Company After You Sent Your Resume? (boomersnextstep.com.au)