This past week, I did a free webinar called, “5 Ways to Leverage a Layoff." (You can watch the recording for free here.) I was inspired to host it after hearing about the 27,000 expected layoffs at HP. Over 400 people tuned in to hear how a layoff might actually work to their advantage. Age isn't the Issue In the session, I pointed out it's not “age" discrimination but “experience" discrimination that hurts people after a layoff. The key point being: With age comes experience - and with that comes the assumptions made about people with experience (i.e. set in ways, higher priced, slow to change, etc.). After that session, I had a lot of participants connect with me via social media and say it was the first time they had ever heard discrimination explained that way. It made me realize that a lot of people are being held hostage by age discrimination. Here's why... You Can't Change Your Age! They say “age is just a number," but it's an irreversible number. You can try to hide your real age, but let's get real: Time marches on. So, if we believe we are being discriminated against for our age, we feel helpless to do anything about it. Good New: Experience Discrimination Can Be Reversed The good news is if you can shift your thinking and realize you are being discriminated for your experience, you can do something about it. It's a simple communication process designed to redirect the perspective of the person doing the discriminating. In fact, I created a Turbo Tutorial (a 10-minute power video lesson) for my CareerHMO members that outlines the four steps you can take to conquer Experience Discrimination. (Sign up here for our 30-day risk-free trial and you can access it.) Can't Crush Discrimination if You Don't Try The key to fighting back is getting in the game. Tweaking your resume and cover letter isn't enough. Crushing Experience Discrimination comes from proactively networking to get people looking at you differently. As a business-of-one looking for their next client (a.k.a. employer) it's up to you to build a marketing plan that gets them to say “yes" instead of “no." I hope this article inspires you to look at discrimination in a new way. More importantly, I hope it motivates you to do something about it!
June 21, 2012