While we encourage clients to recruit young professionals with fresh skills and innovative ideas, we can’t forget about older, seasoned employees who have already built companies from the ground up. This wisdom and experience cannot be taught. It takes time and commitment to a company and its values, and a company should commit to supporting those who have worked to make it what it is today. Even if you come across the resume of an older applicant who hasn’t worked for your company, HR departments should still consider the skills and attributes that withstand time and equip the applicant with skills not taught today. In 2018, workers 45 years old and older have trouble finding jobs when they shouldn’t—here are some reasons why.
Imagine a young employee going a week without conducting a Google search. That’s reality for many older workers. Older generations give a new meaning to “figuring it out.” This work ethic is a hot commodity. To nobody’s fault but the convenience of technology, younger employees simply don’t demonstrate the patience elders possess to troubleshoot problems offline. It’s also not unheard of for older employees to be better at navigating software than those of us who rely on a pristine user experience to guide us. Older employees are accustomed to pulling out a manual, effectively communicating with their peers, and allocating the time to craft solutions that last.
In 2018, we may need to revisit how we teach communication skills. Answering a phone, public speaking, or just having a pleasant conversation proves to be difficult for younger employees entering the workforce these days. Again, communication skills are not something you can learn from reading a textbook or watching a TED talk. Communication is a quality that needs to be nurtured and applied in real-life settings, not on Instagram or Facebook. More often than not, older employees who ask about your weekend can innately articulate their ideas, give thorough presentations, and help circulate healthy communication throughout the workplace.
The No. 1 quality older workers possess is maturity. Younger professionals’ behavior can be hindered by competitiveness or ambitions to prove themselves. More often than not, older employees have the wisdom to remain level-headed. This maturity is essential to ensure that proper communication as well as relationship-building practices are implemented and maintained among employees. This maturity also helps with confidence. Recruiting older employees can help secure leadership roles within a company. Uncertainty leads to mistakes or inability to effectively lead teams.
If you’re looking for reliable, hard-working individuals, consider older applicants. They typically possess an ideal combination of experience, wisdom, and work-ethic to smoothly transition into your company’s workforce while guiding younger employees to grow in their careers. This diversity really provides a nice balance within your work force.
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