My friend Randy Rieland, 60, started looking for a full-time job when he was laid off from his job as a digital media strategist and senior vice president for the Discovery Channel. He had worked there for 14 years, and the abrupt wave out the door caught him by surprise.
He stayed busy, working part-time in media relations for an environmental nonprofit, writing a blog for an online magazine, and sharing wisdom for money, which “crasser types refer to as consulting,” he told me with a laugh. But his search for a full-time gig left him feeling that while the interviews go well, he had the sense that “the person across the desk was looking at his ‘expiration date’.”
His frustration was palpable.
But there’s a happy coda. It took nearly three years, but he did it. He landed a full-time position as digital editorial director for Remedy Health Media. “I was hired by the same woman who hired me at Discovery back in 1995,” he told me with a tinge of gratitude. “She really didn’t care about age because she knew what I could do.”
If you’re over 50 and pounding the pavement these days, you can face certain challenges. On average, it takes someone age 55 or older three months longer to find a job than a younger person.
Randy is not my only friend who has felt the disappointment at a gut level. Some are frankly furious, discouraged, and dumbfounded ...