For the older job seeker ...

Hey, Job Stalker readers … I’m hoping that my schedule will start to normalize this week … as you may recall, I was out of town for the better part of a week at a client’s location to run his volunteer team through a “boot camp” in PR and Social Media for a video project they’re launching this weekend. Of course, being away from my desk for that time left me a huge backlog of stuff to get to, which ran up against my birthday weekend, which involved my family dragging me away from the keyboard for most of that time.

This is why I missed doing a “link dump” on Friday (I’ve got stuff ready for this week), and here I am on Monday with no book. I do have one that I’m reading, but I’ll be lucky to have that good-to-go by next week.

I did, however, head out to an event today which was “book related”, although I didn’t know that going in. It was part of what appears to be a series of programs down at the Harold Washington Library Center (this was my first exposure to the very nice Cindy Pritzker Auditorium space there), “Finding A Job After 40”, and featured Art Koff, who had been a recruiter with the Sun Times and other groups for forty years. After his retirement, Koff founded the site.

Obviously, most of the material presented was aimed at the older job seeker. He did a show-of-hands survey, and it looked like about 10% of the audience was under 40, 40% was 40-50, 40% was 50-60, and about 10% was over 60, so this made sense. Most of the info was fairly basic, stuff on developing your resume, applying to job boards, and Bureau of Labor Statistics on what sort of jobs that are likely to be in greatest demand in the upcoming years, plus suggestions for what sort of temporary positions might be the best bet for Seniors.

The specific theme of the presentation was “Helping to Make Ends Meet”, so the focus was on temp jobs, project work, and work-at-home options. All of these have sections on Koff’s site, as well as jobs that have been posted there by various companies.

There were some stats thrown out too, from the “scary” (a couple moving into retirement at age 65 in 2011 can expect to have $275,000.00 worth of medical expenses, even with Medicare, in their remaining years!), to “common knowledge” (odds of getting a job when referred are 31-1, odds of getting a job when not referred, 500-1), to the “surprising” (by 2019, 40% of the workforce will be self-employed).

Koff and his associate spent a lot of time “walking folks through” the web site, which seemed over-kill to me, but I live on the Internet, and I guess there were a lot of less tech-savvy people in the audience. I was surprised (again, from a show-of-hands) to see that only about 15% had heard of, but about half were on LinkedIn.

I had hoped to have been able to get a copy of their PowerPoint presentation to pass along to you, but there seemed to be a problem with that … I suppose the best bet would be to check on to see if they’ll be posting it. {EDIT: Art sent me the PowerPoint file, and I’ve exported it as a .pdf which you can download HERE}

What about the book angle, you ask? Well, quite to my surprise, everybody got a copy of Art Koff’s book “Invent Your Retirement: Resources for the Good Life”. This wasn’t particularly addressed in the talk, but it looks like it’s aimed for an older demographic (I’m still expecting to work another quarter century, and want a job!), and I’m not sure if I’ll be getting to it anytime soon. It was a nice surprise, however.

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