IT WAS AROUND 1 P.M. I had finished up some meetings
on Wall Street and was taking the subway back to midtown.
The train should have been empty, but it was packed.
A fellow passenger recognized me, and we started talking.
I quickly learned that he and thousands of others had just
lost their jobs at Citibank. All of those folks were on their way
home to tell their husbands, wives, families, and mortgage
companies that they no longer had jobs.
Here’s what I told that man (in a nice, loud voice) and
what I’d like to tell you, too, if you’ve recently taken that
sad ride home: “You’ve lost your job, but you haven’t lost
your skills, talent, or expertise. What you’ve got to do now
is create opportunities.”
Or maybe you have a job, but you’re afraid of losing it.
That’s understandable. Gone are the days when a solid track
record meant automatic job security. To hold on to work in
this economy, you must constantly demonstrate your value.
Fortunately, our digital age has created some wonderful
tools for finding employers and showing your strengths. But
when it comes to discovering or keeping a job, nothing beats
good old-fashioned face time and up-to-date skills. When
you shake the hand of a potential employer or hiring manager, you convey a look of confidence, passion, and genuine
interest that cannot be downloaded.
AARP regularly honors the 50 Best Employers for Workers Over 50®. ( You’ll find this year’s Top 10 on the following
pages.) These companies go out of their way to create a welcoming workplace for older employees. But they aren’t the
only employers who value seasoned workers. Look around
and you’ll discover forward-thinking companies that are a
good fit for your unique talents. To attract those companies,
you need to maximize your opportunities and burnish your
personal brand. Here’s what the hiring pros advise.
BUILD YOUR SOCIAL NETWORK
In order for you to find a job, people need to know you’re
looking. That means telling family, friends, acquaintances—
just about everybody you meet. But it also means you need
to get yourself on the big three social media sites: Facebook,
Twitter, and LinkedIn. Social media is the fastest and most
efficient way to spread the word about your job hunt and to
keep in touch with friends who may hear about openings. On
these sites, you can join groups of people in your field, com-
pare notes, and get answers to job-related questions. What’s
more, potential employers are also online and looking. “The
number of companies that use social media websites to re-
cruit job candidates increased more than 50 percent in the
last three years,” says Hank Jackson, president and CEO of
the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM).