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Wednesday, June 24, 2009

10 Things to Consider If You're an Older Job-Seeker (3)

9. When negotiating salary when your past salaries have been higher (and you are open and able to earn less), keep in mind that just the fact that you have had a higher salary may be an issue. So when the conversation comes up about salary (bring it up in the first interview if you have had to fill out an application with past salary information) - best to try not to give them the exact salary you were earning before so as not to scare them if their range is less. You could say "As you know my past roles have been at a more senior level and my salary reflected that. However I am at a different stage in my career now and I am more interested in interesting work than climbing the corporate ladder. I am open to the mid to high end of your salary range and would be happy at that level." If they insist on a specific number, remember that whatever number you give them you would be willing to accept as it is difficult for you to get an employer to change an offer once it is made.

10. Smaller companies are often more open to hiring older workers - for some reason this is a pretty universal truth, so take advantage. Research smaller companies in your area and approach the owners or managers directly - entrepreneurs and small business owners are more risk-taking than managers in large firms, so this would be a good place to start.

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Tara Gowland


  1. I agree with most of what you advise here. However, most hiring managers are more than skeptical about functional resumes because they suspect candidates who use them are hiding something.

    On your 9th point regarding salary: Yes, taking a cut in salary is something that should be addressed, but I as a job seeker would not bring up the topic, especially at the first interview. You want to have that conversation only if the employer is interested in hiring you.

  2. I was in an interview with a company that touts they have a large group of their employees that are "millenials" (1975+ birth years). I was recruited and asked to talk to the senior recruiter who asked me when I received all my degrees. I had no idea what to say. It was the first time I felt that my age was a factor. Needless to say he quickly told me I was not right for the job due to my background.


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