Monday, December 8, 2008


Ok it’s not strictly a networking topic but it has come up frequently in my peer mentoring discussions.

Scenario one: a friend who looks a little older and more tired than she is applied for a management job. The phone interview was fantastic. The hiring manager said how hard it was to find someone with her qualifications and they could afford her salary. So they met. And the same hiring manager couldn’t keep his face from falling. When prompted he said he didn’t realize my friend was so “old”. She didn’t get the job.

Question: Why is it accepted that Gen X and Y do (and expect to) change jobs every 2 - 4 years but older folks have to have at least 15 good years on offer?
(no, it wasn’t a job that age, gender or appearance would in anyway hinder anyone)

Scenario two: A friend who looks younger than she is has been counseled recently to not “rush” her career advancement, that there is plenty of time. There is 5 years difference between the friends in scenario one and two.

Question: If the ability and experience is there, should age matter?

All the planning there is can be stopped in the face of age discrimination. We can discuss and support but I’m sorry to say that brick walls exists where none should be. Spread the word and let’s keep chipping away it. (or blow it up if you can!)

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