RE: Aging out was RE: job-hunt weirdness

Subject: RE: Aging out was RE: job-hunt weirdness
From: "McLauchlan, Kevin" <Kevin -dot- McLauchlan -at- safenet-inc -dot- com>
To: Sarah Stegall <sstegall -at- bivio -dot- net>, TECHWR-L Writing <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Fri, 10 Jul 2009 09:03:03 -0400

> -----Original Message-----
> From:
> techwr-l-bounces+kevin -dot- mclauchlan=safenet-inc -dot- com -at- lists -dot- techwr [mailto:techwr-l-bounces+kevin.mclauchlan=safenet-> inc -dot- com -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com] On Behalf Of Sarah Stegall
> Sent: Thursday, July 09, 2009 4:51 PM
> To: TECHWR-L Writing
> Subject: Aging out was RE: job-hunt weirdness
> Dunno about Canada, but about the worst thing you can do in Northern
> California is brag about (or even mention) being "long-in-the-tooth".
> Kiss of death out here.
> I watched my highly competent, smart, professional mother,
> with years of
> experience and business savvy, get involuntarily "retired" from
> technical writing for the sin of being older than the people she was
> interviewing with for a job. The last job she had, she was
> actually told
> by her manager that if he'd known her age he would never have
> considered
> her for the job. She did all the usual--wrote her resume to eliminate
> about ten years of experience, concealed the date of her graduation
> (even dropped a degree), dyed her hair, dressed younger. None of it
> worked. After she got laid off, she never again got past an initial
> interview.
> I figure I'm in my last or next to last job as an employee;
> if and when
> I leave this one, I have at best a 50/50 chance of being
> hired full time
> somewhere because I am too old. I'm keeping my freelance
> skills up, and
> hoping my husband keeps his job so that his benefits can cover us.

Here's a little philosophical talking point for y'all.

PROPOSED: That any company that is to enjoy longterm success and growth MUST have a backbone of compentent, relatively long-term employees who are NOT all trainees for the position they are in, or the position they seek (next one on their career checklist).

Further PROPOSED: That, while younger employees who don't display burning ambition might simply be lightweights in all things, by contrast, proven older employees with experience and skills, and who display a "craftsman" mentality (find something you enjoy doing, and become very good at it - seek your improvement within your craft, rather than as a politician...) are an asset and are the embodiment of "corporate memory". If you've lost one of those, or don't have any, it is to your advantage (as a company, and as a manager of a functional department) to hire at least one or two persons who show signs of becoming a contented, competent, long-term employee.

Further PROPOSED: That virtually ALL the people in hiring-authority positions who are dumb enough to exclude seasoned "craftsperson" workers in favor of young-and-ambitious know-/n/o/t/h/i/n/g/s/-littles are in fact ambitious know-littles themselves, either new to the job they hold and not yet competent to do what they are doing, or else _nominally_ in the job they hold, but utterly distracted by (and working full-time-plus toward) the next job they have their sights on.

Further further PROPOSED: Can you say Peter Principle?

Having said that, if I lose this gig for any reason, I'll probably have to discover my inner contractor, because there'll be clouds of those idiots between me and any reasonable, sensible, grounded department manager. Yet they'd likely hire the very same me - for the very same qualities - as a contractor. "Oh, he's a seasoned, experienced, no-nonsense worker. He'll get the job done. Let's hire him until we can find some intern-without-a-clue for a full-time in-house position." :-)

But then, I was once that newbie, so... y'know... can't complain too much without being a total hypocrite... not _too_ much.

- Kevin










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Re: job-hunt weirdness: From: Erik Hare
RE: job-hunt weirdness: From: Dana Worley
Re: job-hunt weirdness: From: Peter Neilson
Re: job-hunt weirdness: From: Dana Worley
RE: job-hunt weirdness: From: McLauchlan, Kevin
Aging out was RE: job-hunt weirdness: From: Sarah Stegall

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