About Me

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Fishers, Indiana, United States
Brenda gained career expertise as a human resources leader at a global company before becoming an HR consultant. Her functional experience includes a variety of sales roles in the health care industry achieving success for over 30 years. She is currently in Consulting & Analytics Business Development for a health care firm. Her passion is participating in, writing about and observing the evolving workforce. For the first time in history four generations work together. It keeps things interesting. Baby Boomers (born 1946-1964) are redefining retirement and what it means to age in the workforce. It is not just about money. Okay it plays a role! At 76.4 million members strong, Boomers are leveraging technology to continue their careers and the personal fulfillment working brings. Managing a late-stage career requires a strategy. There is no roadmap or one size fits all answer. This blog is about sharing, networking & finding your own right answer to working later, managing your career, redefining retirement, looking for work in your 50s & 60s and reinventing yourself.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

The Biggest Mistake 40+ Workers Make

When a person is out of work and they finally restart their career after months or even years on the job-hunt, what is their first order of business? Some people have a celebration. Others coordinate with their financial team to determine how long will it take to recoup their finances. Most people put away the interview suits, save the resume in a folder on their computer and fall out of contact with everyone they networked with while unemployed.   MISTAKE (and yes, I am screaming at you).

There are several new realities to the world of work. #1 unemployment is never going back to the 5% level of 1990s. #2 Age-discrimination complaints filed with the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission increased 35% since the recession started. #3 The older you are, the longer your job search. A recent AARP study says it takes a 55-year-old over a year to find a new position! 53.6 weeks to be exact.

With all of these factors in mind, while you are learning that great new job--three things are critical:
  • Continue to network
  • Update Your Profile on LinkedIN (you don't have to say you are open to career opportunities)
  • Add new skills/training/certifications to your knowledge base

In other words--as great as that new job might be today and no matter how grateful you are to have your new position--it can change in an instant. I'm not turning into "Brenda Bummer" or anything; it happens more than you realize. I've experienced it first-hand. The boss that hires you, gets promoted or leaves the company & you are stuck with a new manager that definitely would not have hired you. The company merges/realigns or worse yet--goes bankrupt. I am a strong advocate of always being open to opportunities, always networking and keeping an eye open to which other companies are growing and who you know there. It is the new reality. You have to do your job with your eyes wide open--all the time. So if you are working--notice your surroundings. Which departments are expanding? What areas are most important to your company? How solid is your internal & external network? If you are not working, don't forget this post  when you get hired.


  1. Great advice Brenda!

  2. This is so true and excellent advise. I am working on the pointers and tips now

  3. This is EXCELLENT advice! I am always looking at job postings online. Not because I'm actively seeking a job, but because I want to see what it out there, what salaries are being offered, etc. I've even applied for jobs knowing I was not serious, just to see if I got a bite to my resume. That helps to see if your resume is showcasing you and your talents to the fullest.

  4. People can never hear this enough. And this advice has never been more important. I've maintained my career and salary and will celebrate my 61st birthday in 2 weeks. I feel good and others say I look good and I know part of it is being active in my profession & my professional association.