Best Career Advice for those over "50"

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Icecakes
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Best Career Advice for those over "50"

Post by Icecakes » Wed Oct 11, 2017 1:04 pm

What is your best career advice for those recently turning 50? Would it be different than for those at other ages? I am referring to networking, updating skills, company loyalty, and other non financial intangibles.

Did you learn anything after 50 you wished you had known before? Mistakes? Successes?

Jack FFR1846
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Re: Best Career Advice for those over "50"

Post by Jack FFR1846 » Wed Oct 11, 2017 1:11 pm

Look around you with open eyes. Does your company run an active program to push out those over 50? Over 55? I never noticed it at Megacorp until I turned 55. It was like someone hit a light switch and my awesome ideas, patents, performance, awards suddenly meant nothing and someone had decided that I was next to be voted off the island. Make it a priority to talk with people leaving and ask why. I did this only after I left and my eyes were only then opened.
Bogle: Smart Beta is stupid

Nectarineman
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Re: Best Career Advice for those over "50"

Post by Nectarineman » Wed Oct 11, 2017 1:36 pm

never be naive about the companies overall prospects. Be careful who you report to. Always keep your resume out there.

KlangFool
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Re: Best Career Advice for those over "50"

Post by KlangFool » Wed Oct 11, 2017 1:41 pm

OP,

The best career advice is to retire and/or be FI before 50 years old. That was my plan. I saved 30+% of my gross income in order to achieve that. But, I lost 50% of my investment because I gambled on Telecom stock. Or else, I would have met my goal. After that mistake, I have to retire or FI after 50 years old.

KlangFool

queso
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Re: Best Career Advice for those over "50"

Post by queso » Wed Oct 11, 2017 1:58 pm

KlangFool wrote:
Wed Oct 11, 2017 1:41 pm
OP,

The best career advice is to retire and/or be FI before 50 years old. That was my plan. I saved 30+% of my gross income in order to achieve that. But, I lost 50% of my investment because I gambled on Telecom stock. Or else, I would have met my goal. After that mistake, I have to retire or FI after 50 years old.

KlangFool
That was my goal as well (tech sector). Be FI by 50 so if someone closes the door on me I can either retire or do something else and not worry about how well it pays.

JBTX
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Re: Best Career Advice for those over "50"

Post by JBTX » Wed Oct 11, 2017 2:03 pm

I’m not sure that I have great advice except that it can be harder to find a job after 50 if your career path is a bit non traditional. I have friends who have comparable skill sets but have a more tradtional path in terms of advancement and titles and have landed new jobs, although it took some work and a great deal of networking. Networking is key, although I do a poor job of it and absolutely hate it.

A smaller company might make more sense as you can become more indespensable. My wife works at small company and will likely be there as long as it’s around or she tires of it. I had an opportunity to go with a small company a few years ago but passed because of lower pay (and a few other intangibles). In retrospect I probably should have taken it.

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sunny_socal
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Re: Best Career Advice for those over "50"

Post by sunny_socal » Wed Oct 11, 2017 2:26 pm

I'm approaching 50. If that mean that I must do more "networking" (ie. having lunch with people I don't really like), I'm toast.

I'll keep my resume updated, and hopefully I'll get laid off sooner than later so I can move my family from California to Texas! :beer

new2bogle
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Re: Best Career Advice for those over "50"

Post by new2bogle » Wed Oct 11, 2017 2:44 pm

sunny_socal wrote:
Wed Oct 11, 2017 2:26 pm
I'm approaching 50. If that mean that I must do more "networking" (ie. having lunch with people I don't really like), I'm toast.

I'll keep my resume updated, and hopefully I'll get laid off sooner than later so I can move my family from California to Texas! :beer
Sorry, Texas is full.

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sunny_socal
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Re: Best Career Advice for those over "50"

Post by sunny_socal » Wed Oct 11, 2017 2:56 pm

new2bogle wrote:
Wed Oct 11, 2017 2:44 pm
sunny_socal wrote:
Wed Oct 11, 2017 2:26 pm
I'm approaching 50. If that mean that I must do more "networking" (ie. having lunch with people I don't really like), I'm toast.

I'll keep my resume updated, and hopefully I'll get laid off sooner than later so I can move my family from California to Texas! :beer
Sorry, Texas is full.
Idaho? Arizona? Utah? (Anything except the West/East coasts)

I don't see many old people in my current Megacorp, I have no idea where they all go. I certainly don't see many retiring.

Dottie57
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Re: Best Career Advice for those over "50"

Post by Dottie57 » Wed Oct 11, 2017 3:03 pm

Don't work for a company you don't like.

Watch for sea changes in the company.
Work hard and create value for the company. Make sure others know.
Find a job you love and are excited about.

Megacorps often have good benefits. Small companies can be much more fun.

Save so you can easily retire if ageism strikes.

Spirit Rider
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Re: Best Career Advice for those over "50"

Post by Spirit Rider » Wed Oct 11, 2017 3:13 pm

Age discrimination is alive and well in U.S. industry . That isn't to say that it isn't without some cause, but the bottom line is senior staff is more expensive than junior staff.

I'll be the first to admit that the things that I might have done easily in my 20s and 30s, don't come so easy in my 40s and 50s. You need to learn to use wisdom and experience to generate better net results. You need to keep your skills up to date and navigate the new realities in the workplace.

You need to understand that career plans do not necessarily survive the Fog of War Business. Oh, and read Sun Tzu's The Art of War and you'll understand that Business is war and loyalty is a one-way street. Have a plan if you are laid off before your planned retirement date and find that your value just isn't there anymore.

visualguy
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Re: Best Career Advice for those over "50"

Post by visualguy » Wed Oct 11, 2017 4:52 pm

The key to survival in private industry after 50 is not to be easily replaceable by someone younger. In general, the reality is that companies don't want to hire or keep older workers unless they bring some value that can't be easily obtained from younger people.

There are strategies for improving your chances of becoming such a highly valuable older employee, but it's not easy. It requires effort, energy, motivation, talent, luck, and health. If you start running low on some of these (as many do after 50), things get dicey.

Anyway, survival is doable in principle, but the question is if you still have what it takes, and if fighting for this survival is how you want to spend the relatively few good years that you have left at that point. Psychology, priorities, and personality traits play a big part in how this shakes out for different people. It's important to be perfectly honest with yourself about what you really want at that stage, and then truly focus on getting there. If you become passive for too long, things have a very strong tendency to lead to a career dead-end.

DavidRoseMountain
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Re: Best Career Advice for those over "50"

Post by DavidRoseMountain » Wed Oct 11, 2017 4:57 pm

Thank god at age 51 I'm financially independent from the efforts of my self-employment.
My focus now needs to be on health and friendships.

KlangFool
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Re: Best Career Advice for those over "50"

Post by KlangFool » Wed Oct 11, 2017 5:06 pm

visualguy wrote:
Wed Oct 11, 2017 4:52 pm
The key to survival in private industry after 50 is not to be easily replaceable by someone younger. In general, the reality is that companies don't want to hire or keep older workers unless they bring some value that can't be easily obtained from younger people.

There are strategies for improving your chances of becoming such a highly valuable older employee, but it's not easy. It requires effort, energy, motivation, talent, luck, and health. If you start running low on some of these (as many do after 50), things get dicey.

Anyway, survival is doable in principle, but the question is if you still have what it takes, and if fighting for this survival is how you want to spend the relatively few good years that you have left at that point. Psychology, priorities, and personality traits play a big part in how this shakes out for different people. It's important to be perfectly honest with yourself about what you really want at that stage, and then truly focus on getting there. If you become passive for too long, things have a very strong tendency to lead to a career dead-end.
visualguy,

But, all those strategies assume that your employer and/or industry is surviving. Which may or may not be true by the time that you reach 50. The whole industry could be on the downward trend. It is not safe to be overly invested in an employer and/or industry either.

The bottom line is you work for yourself. Nobody is looking out for you. You have to take care of your own career and finance.

KlangFool

visualguy
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Re: Best Career Advice for those over "50"

Post by visualguy » Wed Oct 11, 2017 5:34 pm

KlangFool wrote:
Wed Oct 11, 2017 5:06 pm
visualguy,

But, all those strategies assume that your employer and/or industry is surviving. Which may or may not be true by the time that you reach 50. The whole industry could be on the downward trend. It is not safe to be overly invested in an employer and/or industry either.

The bottom line is you work for yourself. Nobody is looking out for you. You have to take care of your own career and finance.

KlangFool
I agree - that happens too. You can survive an employer going down, but your industry going down can be a different story. You need to see that coming, and re-invent yourself. Not easy.

KlangFool
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Re: Best Career Advice for those over "50"

Post by KlangFool » Wed Oct 11, 2017 6:36 pm

visualguy wrote:
Wed Oct 11, 2017 5:34 pm
KlangFool wrote:
Wed Oct 11, 2017 5:06 pm
visualguy,

But, all those strategies assume that your employer and/or industry is surviving. Which may or may not be true by the time that you reach 50. The whole industry could be on the downward trend. It is not safe to be overly invested in an employer and/or industry either.

The bottom line is you work for yourself. Nobody is looking out for you. You have to take care of your own career and finance.

KlangFool
I agree - that happens too. You can survive an employer going down, but your industry going down can be a different story. You need to see that coming, and re-invent yourself. Not easy.
visualguy,

Yes, I see it and I know it. But, it does not mean I had the courage to make the change until I was forced out. Somehow, I dragged this out for 10+ years while many of my peers were long gone. In any case, I had survived long enough that it may no longer matter in a few years.

KlangFool

GoldenFinch
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Re: Best Career Advice for those over "50"

Post by GoldenFinch » Wed Oct 11, 2017 9:19 pm

All I can think while reading these kinds of threads is it’s too bad people are considered all washed up at such a young age. What a waste of talent and energy.

anoop
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Re: Best Career Advice for those over "50"

Post by anoop » Wed Oct 11, 2017 11:00 pm

visualguy wrote:
Wed Oct 11, 2017 4:52 pm
The key to survival in private industry after 50 is not to be easily replaceable by someone younger. In general, the reality is that companies don't want to hire or keep older workers unless they bring some value that can't be easily obtained from younger people.

There are strategies for improving your chances of becoming such a highly valuable older employee, but it's not easy. It requires effort, energy, motivation, talent, luck, and health. If you start running low on some of these (as many do after 50), things get dicey.

Anyway, survival is doable in principle, but the question is if you still have what it takes, and if fighting for this survival is how you want to spend the relatively few good years that you have left at that point. Psychology, priorities, and personality traits play a big part in how this shakes out for different people. It's important to be perfectly honest with yourself about what you really want at that stage, and then truly focus on getting there. If you become passive for too long, things have a very strong tendency to lead to a career dead-end.
I agree 100% with the first paragraph.

I don’t know what advice to give the OP because if I did I’d be following it! Right now, I’m just muddling my way and from the looks of it, so are all of my peers.

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Sandtrap
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Re: Best Career Advice for those over "50"

Post by Sandtrap » Thu Oct 12, 2017 12:26 am

Have the capability to put into place, if not already, multiple income streams, is one thought.

I have been a self employed businessman most of my life up to and through retirement. Somehow early one I resolved that there was no way for me to lose my job unless I fired myself. (Silly reason)
However, there have been transition periods where I was employed as well as self-employed.

Having the ability to generate multiple income streams through a wide skill-set is invaluable to weathering many a storm.
This is one option of as many as there are individuals but certainly something to consider if possible.

Thanks for posting an interesting and timely topic.
j :D

youdiditr2
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Re: Best Career Advice for those over "50"

Post by youdiditr2 » Thu Oct 12, 2017 12:59 am

I'll be 50 in 5 years. If the stock market doesn't crash, I hope to be retired. I work in the Financial Industry and every 6 months since the great recession, we have "re-structuring" which means laying off older folks.

Seem so many people over 50 laid off that we're conditioned to it in our company. All of a sudden, I'm one of the old folks now and probably going to be put out of pasture soon like my former mentors.

rrppve
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Re: Best Career Advice for those over "50"

Post by rrppve » Thu Oct 12, 2017 2:02 am

I don't think the career advice is different over 50, you just have to realize that it's tougher to find a new job both because there are just fewer senior positions and there is age discrimination. A lot depends on whether or not you have a potential pension coming your way or retiree medical, then you need to figure out how to play the game at your current employer to maximize your chances of realizing these very valuable retirement benefits.
If not, figure out how you want to spend your time and what you really enjoy doing both for pay and uncompensated. Focus your energy, networking etc. I'm a big believer in formal education. It's never too late to take additional classes or even pursue another degree.

furikake
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Re: Best Career Advice for those over "50"

Post by furikake » Thu Oct 12, 2017 2:41 am

Not 50 yet, mid-40s here. I think it's harder to find a job in your 50's. I feel like I'm not as sharp anymore in my 40's compared to when I was younger. You definitely want to have enough nest egg so you don't have to rely on a job anymore to survive.

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Re: Best Career Advice for those over "50"

Post by BC_Doc » Thu Oct 12, 2017 6:15 am

GoldenFinch wrote:
Wed Oct 11, 2017 9:19 pm
All I can think while reading these kinds of threads is it’s too bad people are considered all washed up at such a young age. What a waste of talent and energy.
I agree. I’m an ER doc. At least 1/3 of our group is 50+. I am 50. I feel like I’m in my prime. Fast, efficient, and experienced. While I’ve hit my magic number, I still like most of what I do and don’t mind the higher cash flow that comes with full-time employment. I can’t imagine being forced out to pasture. Not likely to happen in my field— docs are a scarce commodity.

DarthSage
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Re: Best Career Advice for those over "50"

Post by DarthSage » Thu Oct 12, 2017 6:44 am

My husband is 55 and likes his job, so he's not looking to retire or otherwise move on any time soon. However, we:

(a) have enough that he could retire tomorrow
(b) have a "Plan B" that he could work, should he feel the need or desire; and
(c) he just got approved to go back for a second Master's degree (he has an MSME, going for a Master's in civil engineering)

I think it may be different for engineers, though. While older engineers are more expensive, they tend to have a vast wealth of knowledge that's tough to replace.

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Top99%
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Re: Best Career Advice for those over "50"

Post by Top99% » Thu Oct 12, 2017 7:23 am

I am 56, in technology and part time. What I am convinced has helped me avoid getting laid off over the past 30 years is viewing myself as a business which sells services to my employer. So, my services need to be something my employer needs and delivered with the right balance of quality, quantity and timeliness.
With this in mind:
1) Keep your skills as marketable as possible. Try and find some skill which is in demand but not necessarily popular/glamorous/trendy.
2) Volunteer to take on tasks that are important to your management/company but others don't want to volunteer for.
3) Part of my career was spent in management and employees who are zero maintenance and willing to pick up loose balls are always valued regardless of age. So, make your manager's life easy.
Adapt or perish

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midareff
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Re: Best Career Advice for those over "50"

Post by midareff » Thu Oct 12, 2017 7:26 am

Icecakes wrote:
Wed Oct 11, 2017 1:04 pm
What is your best career advice for those recently turning 50? Would it be different than for those at other ages? I am referring to networking, updating skills, company loyalty, and other non financial intangibles.

Did you learn anything after 50 you wished you had known before? Mistakes? Successes?
I maintained professional certifications, continued to write and be published, continued to go to webinars, expositions and seminars to maintain networking channels. Attended Master's level coursework as recommended and paid by my employer and I stayed loyal to the department and division I worked in. I kept my head down, my nose clean and worked whatever hours and days were required to get the job done to my satisfaction, which had high standards. All of that while remembering to keep saving, investing and swimming for the finish line. It was an interesting job which I liked and I had earned senior management's respect, and had a great staff. Retired April 1, 2012 with a good pension and absolutely NO regrets.

carolinaman
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Re: Best Career Advice for those over "50"

Post by carolinaman » Thu Oct 12, 2017 7:48 am

Keep your skills current and marketable and have a good network of people in your line of work. In your job, maintain good relations with your boss and colleagues. Make yourself valuable to the company and be willing to take on extra work. One problem some workers have is that once they reach a certain age, they try to cruise until retirement. That approach often has a bad outcome. You should also have a good emergency fund and keep your finances in good order, avoid over committing yourself financially.

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djpeteski
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Re: Best Career Advice for those over "50"

Post by djpeteski » Thu Oct 12, 2017 8:23 am

I work as an individual contributor software engineer, and the last time I changed jobs I was 49.5, and am about to turn 51. Add to this my previous job only lasted 18 months, and a shorter stint at the one before that.

To me age is an attitude and turning 50 led me to more actively pursue fitness. While I have traditionally been drawn to weightlifting, I switched to doing more cardio as weightlifting alone is difficult for me to keep down the body fat %. The result of this, is I look much younger than I actually am and significantly younger then my father at a similar age.

How does that relate to career? Once you get your foot in the door they don't really see you as an old guy.

You have the additional benefit, currently, of being in a tight labor market. If you can do the job, they may overlook "warts" you have in your employment history or education. For me, I was very concerned about age my short tenures at my two previous positions. As usual, when communicating with a potential employer, the overall message is how you can help make them more profitable. After about a 6 week job hunt, I had three offers.

Then the usual mantra once you start: keep up skills, work as a team member, serve those around you, treat your coworkers well, and work your tail off. Those are all behaviors that is well within one's ability to control and make someone an invaluable asset.

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sunny_socal
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Re: Best Career Advice for those over "50"

Post by sunny_socal » Thu Oct 12, 2017 8:29 am

BC_Doc wrote:
Thu Oct 12, 2017 6:15 am
GoldenFinch wrote:
Wed Oct 11, 2017 9:19 pm
All I can think while reading these kinds of threads is it’s too bad people are considered all washed up at such a young age. What a waste of talent and energy.
I agree. I’m an ER doc. At least 1/3 of our group is 50+. I am 50. I feel like I’m in my prime. Fast, efficient, and experienced. While I’ve hit my magic number, I still like most of what I do and don’t mind the higher cash flow that comes with full-time employment. I can’t imagine being forced out to pasture. Not likely to happen in my field— docs are a scarce commodity.
If I had to live life all over again I'd also become a doctor.

But I became an engineer. American engineers are almost extinct, I haven't interviewed a US-born individual in over 10 years. Most are now coming from India & China and they are highly trained and very sharp. Most of the new jobs are also going to India & China :| I'm busy training my replacements. (I haven't been told that of course, but when your entire "team" is overseas it doesn't take much to connect the dots...)

flyingaway
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Re: Best Career Advice for those over "50"

Post by flyingaway » Thu Oct 12, 2017 9:22 am

I think making yourself financially independent by 50 is the most important (which I did not). You can sharp your skills (or not) after that.

2015
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Re: Best Career Advice for those over "50"

Post by 2015 » Thu Oct 12, 2017 10:59 am

furikake wrote:
Thu Oct 12, 2017 2:41 am
Not 50 yet, mid-40s here. I think it's harder to find a job in your 50's. I feel like I'm not as sharp anymore in my 40's compared to when I was younger. You definitely want to have enough nest egg so you don't have to rely on a job anymore to survive.
Actually, this is person dependent, or perhaps luck dependent. I was in my mid-50's at the absolute worst time in the economy ('10/'11) when I lost one job, defied the odds for my age group by getting another within 8 months, only to lose that job 7 months later. At that point, in my later 50's, I decided to find shelter from the employment storm by exiting leadership and going to work for a favorite ex-boss.

One of the best pieces of advice I ever read (in my very early 50's) was that one's 50's are referred to as the 50's land mines, whereby one's retirement plans are derailed as the result of an unplanned serious health condition or job loss from which one never recovers. I doubled up on all of my saving after reading that intending to become financially independent as soon as possible. It was one of the best decisions I've ever made.

I also recommend honing the best skill one can acquire in one's 50's which is the art of interviewing and securing a job. I perfected that art during the 7 months between my '10 layoff and finding the next job 8 months later, but the full time job of job hunting, dedicating hours to reviewing, practicing, and perfecting interviewing, burned me out like nothing else has. After the second layoff and subsequent job a month later with the ex-boss, I began to investigate retirement for the first time. Previously, I had intended to work until 67. Now retired at 60 for the past 2 12 years, I can't imagine losing that much of my life (7 years) to work. So you might say those layoffs were one of the best things that could have happened to me.

remomnyc
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Re: Best Career Advice for those over "50"

Post by remomnyc » Thu Oct 12, 2017 11:57 am

In the finance industry, ageism is very real. After the great recession, I noticed that many who were laid off in their 40s and 50s never regained entry, or if they did, rarely at their former compensation levels. Some turned down subpar offers early to find that after 6 to 12 months, there were no more offers. My best advice is to be financially prepared to be laid off. The second is to volunteer and socialize immediately. Some of those who found employment did so through networking at unexpected places, e.g. a tennis league, running club, volunteering at a not-for-profit, a class reunion, etc. In your 50s, it is uncommon to be hired by someone you don’t know or someone who doesn’t know someone you know. I hate networking, so I decided to save enough that I would welcome a layoff.

MathWizard
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Re: Best Career Advice for those over "50"

Post by MathWizard » Thu Oct 12, 2017 12:12 pm

Pretty much the same things, just avoid some of the traps.

When new team members come up with things, don't discourage them by saying, "We tried that 20 years ago
and it didn't work, so don't bother." If they have ideas, you can let them know what difficulties you had in the past
and why, but those may not apply anymore. Computers and communication are faster, people's ideas have changed.

(20 years ago, how many middle school kids had a cellphone, much less a cell phone? Now a cell based, or app based solution
might be a good fit when it would have been impossible years ago. Similarly with telecommuting.)

Don't hoard knowledge. A company that lets a single member of the staff keep critical information or skill is a disaster waiting to happen.
Companies get rid of people like this.

If you lose your job, don't think that you will automatically get a new job at the same or greater pay. Be prepared to earn less, even
if it turns out that you don't have to.

Other things you may need to embrace:

You may be expected to be a mentor rather than a mentee.

You may have a standing desk rather than a sitting desk.

You may be part of an open office arrangement rather than offices or cubicles. This is not a downgrade in your status, just a new way of doing
business.

----

I would make sure that you are reaching Financial Independence. You have less time to recover from a layoff, and likely moving back in with mom and dad is not an option. (My kids are early in their careers. They can move back in if they gave to. I cannot do the same.)

rgs92
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Re: Best Career Advice for those over "50"

Post by rgs92 » Thu Oct 12, 2017 12:18 pm

Good comments in this thread. Yep, do your best to avoid being dependent on a salary before hitting 50. The posters here on Bogleheads are very wise and speak from experience, so believe what they say.

This is certainly very true in private industry I.T. and engineering IME, where long careers can easily just end on a moment's notice permanently in that age bracket (or even a bit younger).

Thanks to the posters for their honesty.

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Re: Best Career Advice for those over "50"

Post by Grt2bOutdoors » Thu Oct 12, 2017 12:26 pm

Make yourself "indispensable" - step up and volunteer for extra assignments, if available. Some may say "keep a low profile", hogwash, make yourself known to colleagues and management alike - some call that networking, others call it being a "team player". Some firms prize individualism, most folks especially colleagues prefer a team mate rather than a "me or I" directed individual.

Save, save as much as you can - you can do all the networking in the world, be indispensable, etc. when the stuff hits the fan, no one is safe. Prime examples - in 2008, we had multiple large cap firms outright collapse, everyone from the CEO down to the clerk lost their employment. The difference was the CEO and upper management had significant money banked away, most people will not be in that same favorable situation.
"One should invest based on their need, ability and willingness to take risk - Larry Swedroe" Asking Portfolio Questions

visualguy
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Re: Best Career Advice for those over "50"

Post by visualguy » Thu Oct 12, 2017 12:46 pm

Grt2bOutdoors wrote:
Thu Oct 12, 2017 12:26 pm
Some may say "keep a low profile", hogwash, make yourself known to colleagues and management alike - some call that networking, others call it being a "team player".
Sometimes you need to be careful with this... Getting on the radar screen with management can sometimes lead to extra scrutiny and being shot down, when this wouldn't have happened if you kept a "low profile". Another thing that sometimes happens with this is that you lose control, ownership, and credit for what you're doing due to political reasons. Sometimes it's best to maintain a low profile until you reach some milestones. It really depends on the circumstances and personalities.

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TNL
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Re: Best Career Advice for those over "50"

Post by TNL » Thu Oct 12, 2017 1:36 pm

I'm 43 (almost 44) and just wanted to thank everyone for their insight. I need to think about this more than I have been, because let's be honest. It's an unpleasant topic and who wants to think about it? Especially those of us in professions like journalism, law, and other fields that have been seriously disrupted in the new economy and post-2008. Great comments. Pls keep them coming.

Grt2bOutdoors
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Re: Best Career Advice for those over "50"

Post by Grt2bOutdoors » Thu Oct 12, 2017 1:51 pm

visualguy wrote:
Thu Oct 12, 2017 12:46 pm
Grt2bOutdoors wrote:
Thu Oct 12, 2017 12:26 pm
Some may say "keep a low profile", hogwash, make yourself known to colleagues and management alike - some call that networking, others call it being a "team player".
Sometimes you need to be careful with this... Getting on the radar screen with management can sometimes lead to extra scrutiny and being shot down, when this wouldn't have happened if you kept a "low profile". Another thing that sometimes happens with this is that you lose control, ownership, and credit for what you're doing due to political reasons. Sometimes it's best to maintain a low profile until you reach some milestones. It really depends on the circumstances and personalities.
You lose 100% of the shots you don't take. I wasn't implying to be reckless, as with anything else, sound judgement is required.
"One should invest based on their need, ability and willingness to take risk - Larry Swedroe" Asking Portfolio Questions

KlangFool
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Re: Best Career Advice for those over "50"

Post by KlangFool » Thu Oct 12, 2017 3:10 pm

Grt2bOutdoors wrote:
Thu Oct 12, 2017 1:51 pm
visualguy wrote:
Thu Oct 12, 2017 12:46 pm
Grt2bOutdoors wrote:
Thu Oct 12, 2017 12:26 pm
Some may say "keep a low profile", hogwash, make yourself known to colleagues and management alike - some call that networking, others call it being a "team player".
Sometimes you need to be careful with this... Getting on the radar screen with management can sometimes lead to extra scrutiny and being shot down, when this wouldn't have happened if you kept a "low profile". Another thing that sometimes happens with this is that you lose control, ownership, and credit for what you're doing due to political reasons. Sometimes it's best to maintain a low profile until you reach some milestones. It really depends on the circumstances and personalities.
You lose 100% of the shots you don't take. I wasn't implying to be reckless, as with anything else, sound judgement is required.
Grt2bOutdoors,

Or, the time and energy are better invested on certification and network outside of this employer? Aka, diversification.

KlangFool

KlangFool
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Re: Best Career Advice for those over "50"

Post by KlangFool » Thu Oct 12, 2017 3:17 pm

OP,

It is very simple.

A) "Next Job Security"

You have the ability to find the next job with this employer or somebody else. Are your time and energy totally invested on this employer? How much of your skill, knowledge, capability is portable across employers and industries?

B) Financial Independence of various degree

Aka, you do not need a job. Or, to a lesser degree, you can transition to a new job with lower pay or work part-time.

KlangFool

gregwils
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Re: Best Career Advice for those over "50"

Post by gregwils » Thu Oct 12, 2017 3:18 pm

Agree that finding a job post-50 is going to be very difficult. I feel very fortunate that I have a good, but demanding job, and will turn 60 next month. I work for a fairly large privately held company that has no history of pushing out older people, just under performers.

My career advice is really focused on keeping your job. My suggestions include - eat healthy, get plenty of rest, and exercise regularly so you are physically prepared to meet the demands of work. Second, work your butt off and with the passion and energy of your youth. I would agree that some technical learning doesn't occur at as fast a rate as when you were young, so focus on refining softer skills - coach, mentor, leader and manager. Lastly, (stealing from another in this thread) make sure you are contributing value to your organization. Most people can distinguish between good, valued employees and those who area replaceable components. Make sure people know you as a good employee and let your reputation do your bidding.

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nedsaid
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Re: Best Career Advice for those over "50"

Post by nedsaid » Thu Oct 12, 2017 7:19 pm

KlangFool wrote:
Wed Oct 11, 2017 1:41 pm
OP,

The best career advice is to retire and/or be FI before 50 years old. That was my plan. I saved 30+% of my gross income in order to achieve that. But, I lost 50% of my investment because I gambled on Telecom stock. Or else, I would have met my goal. After that mistake, I have to retire or FI after 50 years old.

KlangFool
That is hard to do as people are often raising children and financing college educations. Certainly, if I worked in high tech and was making big money, I would be saving a lot of it. You have the double whammy of a volatile industry plus being targeted for lay-off after 50. But most people don't make the big money and have big obligations to meet.
A fool and his money are good for business.

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Re: Best Career Advice for those over "50"

Post by KlangFool » Thu Oct 12, 2017 7:35 pm

nedsaid wrote:
Thu Oct 12, 2017 7:19 pm
KlangFool wrote:
Wed Oct 11, 2017 1:41 pm
OP,

The best career advice is to retire and/or be FI before 50 years old. That was my plan. I saved 30+% of my gross income in order to achieve that. But, I lost 50% of my investment because I gambled on Telecom stock. Or else, I would have met my goal. After that mistake, I have to retire or FI after 50 years old.

KlangFool
That is hard to do as people are often raising children and financing college educations. Certainly, if I worked in high tech and was making big money, I would be saving a lot of it. You have the double whammy of a volatile industry plus being targeted for lay-off after 50. But most people don't make the big money and have big obligations to meet.
nedsaid,

Most thing in life that worth having is hard to do.

<<Certainly, if I worked in high tech and was making big money, I would be saving a lot of it. >>

A) I am a 30+% gross income saver for my whole life. This applies even when I was making 1/4 to 1/3 of my current income. So, my income does not affect my saving rate.

B) Most of my peers do not save money. They buy a bigger and more expensive house.

C) In my opinion, it is a lifestyle decision for many folks.

KlangFool

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badbreath
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Re: Best Career Advice for those over "50"

Post by badbreath » Thu Oct 12, 2017 7:39 pm

I would have to agree with the FI at 50. I was almost there at 50 and the due to a inheritance it put me over the top. So now I can just quit at any time I would like.

The field I am in is very youth orientated, think of the fashion industry for products if I was let go it would be nearly impossible to get a new job. But the projects that I worked on have been so successful and profitable for the megacorp that management gave me restricted stock options to keep me for 3 more years. (I will be 60 by then, time to go)

How did I do that, worked my butt off and came up with designs that no one was expecting. Also keep all project on schedule and on time so no one could point a finger at me and say its his fault we are late.
“While money can’t buy happiness, it certainly lets you choose your own form of misery.” Groucho Marx

2015
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Re: Best Career Advice for those over "50"

Post by 2015 » Thu Oct 12, 2017 8:27 pm

Grt2bOutdoors wrote:
Thu Oct 12, 2017 12:26 pm
Make yourself "indispensable" - step up and volunteer for extra assignments, if available. Some may say "keep a low profile", hogwash, make yourself known to colleagues and management alike - some call that networking, others call it being a "team player". Some firms prize individualism, most folks especially colleagues prefer a team mate rather than a "me or I" directed individual.

Save, save as much as you can - you can do all the networking in the world, be indispensable, etc. when the stuff hits the fan, no one is safe. Prime examples - in 2008, we had multiple large cap firms outright collapse, everyone from the CEO down to the clerk lost their employment. The difference was the CEO and upper management had significant money banked away, most people will not be in that same favorable situation.
There is no such thing as "indispensable." I would advocate only volunteer for extra assignments if: (a) they will make you more marketable; (b) the political winds look favorable with respect to your moving up within the organization; and most important (c) you will gain valuable knowledge, technically, politically, interpersonal skills, etc., and/or (d) you can use them in your next performance review to get a better raise (don't forget to keep track of your accomplishments so you can list these for your manager at review time; they are valuable justification for asking for a larger increase than you would otherwise get!). Don't tread water trying to stroke your own ego working on pet projects, but rather look for high profile projects you can put on your resume that show how you made something better, cheaper, faster, or newer in your field. These are the capabilities organizations are looking for, and for the most part, they are in short supply and are the skills the market will pay for.

Always be looking for you next move. It will probably become before you're ready for it, anyway. It usually does.

frugalecon
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Re: Best Career Advice for those over "50"

Post by frugalecon » Thu Oct 12, 2017 8:46 pm

KlangFool wrote:
Thu Oct 12, 2017 7:35 pm
nedsaid wrote:
Thu Oct 12, 2017 7:19 pm
KlangFool wrote:
Wed Oct 11, 2017 1:41 pm
OP,

The best career advice is to retire and/or be FI before 50 years old. That was my plan. I saved 30+% of my gross income in order to achieve that. But, I lost 50% of my investment because I gambled on Telecom stock. Or else, I would have met my goal. After that mistake, I have to retire or FI after 50 years old.

KlangFool
That is hard to do as people are often raising children and financing college educations. Certainly, if I worked in high tech and was making big money, I would be saving a lot of it. You have the double whammy of a volatile industry plus being targeted for lay-off after 50. But most people don't make the big money and have big obligations to meet.
nedsaid,

Most thing in life that worth having is hard to do.

<<Certainly, if I worked in high tech and was making big money, I would be saving a lot of it. >>

A) I am a 30+% gross income saver for my whole life. This applies even when I was making 1/4 to 1/3 of my current income. So, my income does not affect my saving rate.

B) Most of my peers do not save money. They buy a bigger and more expensive house.

C) In my opinion, it is a lifestyle decision for many folks.

KlangFool
I think Klangfool is wise about the lifestyle decision aspect of things. I imagine it is straightforward to think when earning,say $150,000/year that it is impossible to save 30% of gross income, because of the financial demands of middle class life, but that is sort of like saying it is impossible to live on $100,000, which is obviously untrue, since many people do that routinely. It is just necessary to pay oneself first. I think it can be difficult for someone who is 35 years old to imagine what their 50-year-old self might need.

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Re: Best Career Advice for those over "50"

Post by anoop » Thu Oct 12, 2017 9:09 pm

The best advice I can think of after seeing a bunch of responses—

Follow your own intuition. A lot of the ideas being floated here can lead to burnout and accelerate one’s exit from the work force. Instead of swimming upstream all the time and acting out of fear, follow your intuition and do things out of desire. If one doesn’t enjoy the process of keeping one’s skills updated or volunteering for extra assignments, it is more likely to lead to burnout than to a long fulfilling career.

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nedsaid
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Re: Best Career Advice for those over "50"

Post by nedsaid » Thu Oct 12, 2017 9:48 pm

KlangFool wrote:
Thu Oct 12, 2017 7:35 pm
nedsaid wrote:
Thu Oct 12, 2017 7:19 pm
KlangFool wrote:
Wed Oct 11, 2017 1:41 pm
OP,

The best career advice is to retire and/or be FI before 50 years old. That was my plan. I saved 30+% of my gross income in order to achieve that. But, I lost 50% of my investment because I gambled on Telecom stock. Or else, I would have met my goal. After that mistake, I have to retire or FI after 50 years old.

KlangFool
That is hard to do as people are often raising children and financing college educations. Certainly, if I worked in high tech and was making big money, I would be saving a lot of it. You have the double whammy of a volatile industry plus being targeted for lay-off after 50. But most people don't make the big money and have big obligations to meet.
nedsaid,

Most thing in life that worth having is hard to do.

<<Certainly, if I worked in high tech and was making big money, I would be saving a lot of it. >>

A) I am a 30+% gross income saver for my whole life. This applies even when I was making 1/4 to 1/3 of my current income. So, my income does not affect my saving rate.

B) Most of my peers do not save money. They buy a bigger and more expensive house.

C) In my opinion, it is a lifestyle decision for many folks.

KlangFool
I agree with you however in recent years things have changed. In the major metropolitan areas of the West Coast, it is just getting darned expensive to live. Housing is more expensive, even the cheaper options have been bid up. Healthcare premiums have zoomed, and now that I am on my own to buy my health insurance, I am experiencing this for myself. A third area is used cars, which are more expensive than they used to be. Fortunately, inflation in other areas seems to be quite subdued. I am looking for work, I have tried to be picky but it seems that employers want to start you out at the bottom again.
A fool and his money are good for business.

KlangFool
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Re: Best Career Advice for those over "50"

Post by KlangFool » Thu Oct 12, 2017 9:57 pm

nedsaid wrote:
Thu Oct 12, 2017 9:48 pm

I agree with you however in recent years things have changed. In the major metropolitan areas of the West Coast, it is just getting darned expensive to live. Housing is more expensive, even the cheaper options have been bid up. Healthcare premiums have zoomed, and now that I am on my own to buy my health insurance, I am experiencing this for myself. A third area is used cars, which are more expensive than they used to be. Fortunately, inflation in other areas seems to be quite subdued. I am looking for work, I have tried to be picky but it seems that employers want to start you out at the bottom again.
nedsaid,

That is one of my advice. If you have the financial independence of certain degree, you have the leverage to hold out for the right job and offer. You can say no.

KlangFool

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nedsaid
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Re: Best Career Advice for those over "50"

Post by nedsaid » Thu Oct 12, 2017 11:49 pm

KlangFool wrote:
Thu Oct 12, 2017 9:57 pm
nedsaid wrote:
Thu Oct 12, 2017 9:48 pm

I agree with you however in recent years things have changed. In the major metropolitan areas of the West Coast, it is just getting darned expensive to live. Housing is more expensive, even the cheaper options have been bid up. Healthcare premiums have zoomed, and now that I am on my own to buy my health insurance, I am experiencing this for myself. A third area is used cars, which are more expensive than they used to be. Fortunately, inflation in other areas seems to be quite subdued. I am looking for work, I have tried to be picky but it seems that employers want to start you out at the bottom again.
nedsaid,

That is one of my advice. If you have the financial independence of certain degree, you have the leverage to hold out for the right job and offer. You can say no.

KlangFool
Well, fortunately I saved a lot of my shekels so I am in a good financial position. I am very thankful that I don't have to panic. I am getting interviews, so it is only a matter of time that I will be working again. When it happens, it happens fast.
A fool and his money are good for business.

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