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Help! I've been out of work for two years!

Job Search Inspiration

Question:

I’ve been out of work for two years. I was trained to do something that no one wants done now. I’m over 60, too old to learn anything new, and employers don’t want anybody old anymore. I worked really hard and saved up my money, but it’s almost gone. I did everything right, but now no one will hire me. I’m ready to give up. What do I do now?

Answer:

First, don’t give up!

Please come to Workforce Services, and let the staff help with your job search. Start with the Welcome Seminar (currently every Thursday afternoon; check the FCWS calendar to be sure.) You’ll discover what is available to help you find that next job.

If you really think that your age is a barrier to employment, come to the Overcoming the Age Factor seminar (check the FCWS calendar for the next date and time.) Smart companies know the benefits of hiring workers with more experience. In this seminar, you’ll learn how to call their attention to all the good things you bring to the table.

It may be that there is something on your resume that should not be. Or maybe something should be there that isn’t. Fashions in resumes change, and if it’s been several years since you had to write one, things have changed. You can arrange a meeting with our Resume Doctor to see what, if anything, your resume needs.

If employers are calling you for interviews, then your resume is doing what it’s supposed to do. If you need some help with your interviewing skills, come to the Interview Success class. You’ll hear how other people answer horrible interview questions, and even get a chance to answer some yourself. The instructor will do what the real interviewer won’t: tell you what’s good about your answers, and how you can improve them. There is also a lot of information on how to prepare for job interviews.

You can even do a Professional Practice Interview with a staff member or one of FCWS’ Board members (many of whom are employers themselves.) They will ask you actual interview questions, and give you honest feedback.

Another thing to consider: join LinkedIn, if you haven’t already. LinkedIn is the next big thing for job search. The majority of employers, especially in large companies, use it as a recruiting tool. If you aren’t on LinkedIn, you are preventing those employers from finding you. It has a wealth of features that can connect you with your next company. Come to The LinkedIn Connection seminar and find out about it. (See the FCWS calendar.)

On that note, maybe your computer skills can use an upgrade. If you need to, come to Computers for Scaredy Cats. The instructor is a recovering computer scaredy cat herself, and remembers what it’s like to not know what everybody else already seems to know. We have other computer classes to help with job search topics, and several online classes (on the Internet) to build your skills.

If it would be helpful, you can talk with an Employment and Training Specialist. These folks have studied the job market for years, and know what’s going on with local employers. They have heard it all; you will not surprise them with any employment-related problem.

In any case, don’t give up, seriously. There is lots of help and information for whatever stands between you and your next job. You just have to ask.

About the Author

Beth Davis-Reinhold

Beth Davis-Reinhold is an instructor at Frederick County Workforce Services, where she has worked for over 20 years. She teaches job search seminars and basic computer skills. She is a Certified Professional Resume Writer, and is Internet and Computing Core Certified (IC3). Beth has been a member of Toastmasters International for more than 15 years, and is an Advanced Communicator Silver. A graduate of Elizabethtown College in Pennsylvania, Beth has also studied American Sign Language for many years. In addition to many sundry projects for FCWS, Beth writes its “Ask the Career Coach” blog.