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Old 02-02-2015, 11:54 AM
 
25 posts, read 28,080 times
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I have recently participated in the number of interview panels where I and the team have interviewed hundreds of people for a huge government contract. This has been an eye opening experience to say the least. A large number of applicants are 55-65 years old and unemployed. The stories they have told us about being fired, laid off or pushed out their last job. So much bitterness and anger and so many of these people I suspect will never work full time again in a professional job. They have been sent out to pasture by a society that generally is not interested in older workers.

If you are on this board, I suspect you are either retired or are planning for retirement. Did you retire on your own schedule? Or were you pushed out and forced to retire because there was no one who was willing to hire someone at your age? Tell us your story.
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Old 02-02-2015, 12:04 PM
 
12,825 posts, read 20,129,272 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Good Point View Post
I have recently participated in the number of interview panels where I and the team have interviewed hundreds of people for a huge government contract. This has been an eye opening experience to say the least. A large number of applicants are 55-65 years old and unemployed. The stories they have told us about being fired, laid off or pushed out their last job. So much bitterness and anger and so many of these people I suspect will never work full time again in a professional job. They have been sent out to pasture by a society that generally is not interested in older workers.

If you are on this board, I suspect you are either retired or are planning for retirement. Did you retire on your own schedule? Or were you pushed out and forced to retire because there was no one who was willing to hire someone at your age? Tell us your story.
Let's just say I am at risk. I am now in my early 50s, in tech.

There are very unfortunate stereotypes of people in my cohort. The stereotypes are not even due to actual work place experience. They are due to the fact that as a relative percentage of the work force, my cohort had fewer people in tech, because there were a lot fewer tech jobs back in the mid - late 80s when I started. In other words, my "class" within the tech field is small (ah, yet another Xer lament). Meanwhile, there is a much larger class of people in their 30s and a rising one of people in their 20s. Many of them experienced people my age as being their parents' generation, and among them, are very many non tech savvy people. So, a stereotype arises.
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Old 02-02-2015, 12:07 PM
 
Location: Kountze, Texas
1,013 posts, read 1,158,582 times
Reputation: 1267
DH was pushed into retirement at 51 because of filing an EEO grievance. It was part of the settlement. Luckily he was fully vested for annuity.
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Old 02-02-2015, 12:46 PM
PDD
 
Location: The Sand Hills of NC
8,774 posts, read 14,859,160 times
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If you are a decision making executive in a large Corp. who's raises are based on cost cutting for the company it's an easy decision to lay off with a compensation packege a 50-60 YO worker making 150K when he can be replaced by a foreign worker with even better academics but is willing to be hired for 50-75K.

This is happening everyday in America. I know because some of my friends are training foreigners who are replacing my friends co-workers.He will probably be next.

It's a sad state, just glad I'm out of the work force.
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Old 02-02-2015, 01:36 PM
 
Location: East of Seattle since 1992, originally from SF Bay Area
29,750 posts, read 54,390,602 times
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I don't see that. In fact, I started working here at age 57, and have been promoted twice since (2009). I have hired people ages 48 and 54. With many of our better jobs requiring 15 years experience, most applicants are over 40. People tend to stay here until 68-70 before retiring, and no one is pushed out early. Even in 2008 when we had 30+ layoffs they were based on non-critical functions being eliminated, and included younger people.
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Old 02-02-2015, 01:58 PM
 
6,438 posts, read 3,065,752 times
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I was eligible to retire and always planned to retire at 55 unless there was some extraordinary change in my personal life. That's what I did.

Having said that, I could see that if I wanted to stay longer it would have become increasingly untenable.

I don't think I would have been forced out, but conditions would have become increasingly intolerable to me. I can see that might have turned into being forced into a corner or less desirable position if I wasn't able just to go along to get along. I'm pretty sure I would not have been able to do that since I rarely did before.
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Old 02-02-2015, 02:19 PM
 
6,438 posts, read 3,065,752 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hemlock140 View Post
I don't see that. In fact, I started working here at age 57, and have been promoted twice since (2009). I have hired people ages 48 and 54. With many of our better jobs requiring 15 years experience, most applicants are over 40. People tend to stay here until 68-70 before retiring, and no one is pushed out early. Even in 2008 when we had 30+ layoffs they were based on non-critical functions being eliminated, and included younger people.
I think that varies by organization and skill set.

Also, somewhat depends on what level you are at within an organization.

Staying at my own public sector org would have become increasingly difficult. I could have taken my experience, insider knowledge of the public org as well as my contacts to a related private sector company and probably doubled my salary just to work those contacts.

Kind of ironic.

When you reach a level beyond which you have no desire to be promoted, you end up working for people who are either younger or less experienced. In my case, I ended up working for the least competent members of my own generation as well as the hungrier/sometimes brighter people of the next generation who were fast tracked without much experience. I always knew that would happen, but I underestimated how hard it would be to work for people with less competence/experience.
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Old 02-02-2015, 02:32 PM
 
Location: NNV
1,509 posts, read 967,985 times
Reputation: 3071
Quote:
Originally Posted by Good Point View Post
I have recently participated in the number of interview panels where I and the team have interviewed hundreds of people for a huge government contract. This has been an eye opening experience to say the least. A large number of applicants are 55-65 years old and unemployed. The stories they have told us about being fired, laid off or pushed out their last job. So much bitterness and anger and so many of these people I suspect will never work full time again in a professional job. They have been sent out to pasture by a society that generally is not interested in older workers.

If you are on this board, I suspect you are either retired or are planning for retirement. Did you retire on your own schedule? Or were you pushed out and forced to retire because there was no one who was willing to hire someone at your age? Tell us your story.
What I would like to know is did your company hire any of these 55+ applicants?

My wife was laid off over two years ago and has a heck of a time even getting an interview. She has been in senior management of a few companies. But her lack of a degree has been a big drawback in the competitive market of So. Cal. Either she doesnt qualify (due to a lack of a degree) or she is "overqualified" (if she is willing to take less money). Fortunately, I can support both of us but her ego has taken a blow...

I will be retiring in about 4 years (61) if no one forces me out. Ideally, (I have a county job) I would like the county to be mismanaged so they have have the early retirement program again (they gave people approaching retirement an extra two years of service to incentivize people to retire and reduce liablilities). They did this back in 2009.
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Old 02-02-2015, 02:59 PM
 
Location: San Francisco
16,414 posts, read 5,349,421 times
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I wasn't "forced" to retire technically, but the realities of the changing workplace (television) made it impossible for me to stay because the job that I had trained for ceased to exist. Automation rendered me obsolete. The work that had once been done by a technical crew of seven people and a director became one person - the director - operating a bank of PCs which performed the technical jobs of audio, video, graphics, and camera.

When this new technology was announced an a department meeting, the president of the company said that once the automation went into effect there wouldn't be enough positions for all of us. We would all be trained, but only those who demonstrated that they could be successful at it would be retained, about seven to nine of us. (The department was more than twice that size).

Then the president announced that early retirement incentives would be offered. "If you've seen enough change during your lifetime and have had enough, we will understand." In other words, You old farts who can't cut it can leave now.

Some of my co-workers bailed and got new jobs elsewhere, a few retired. Most of us stayed for the training. Those who did best were the ones who had already had experience as TV directors or video switchers. I had done neither (my specialities were audio and graphics). I had no desire to be a TV director. It wasn't a good fit for my personality or skills. I gave it a fair shot and took the training, but as I suspected the new job wasn't for me, so I retired.

I still visit the Facebook page created for present and former employees of the TV station. Recently some old-timers were posting their memories from the glory days when a younger, current employee jumped in. He made a lot of smug, sarcastic remarks about older people who couldn't cut it and bragged about how better things were now, which caused a major flame war.

That hostile attitude is not uncommon among younger employees, I think, though senior managers are smart enough not to admit what everyone knows, that they discriminate based on age. When I was one of the younger employees myself, I used to wonder why the older guys insisted on hanging around instead of letting our generation have a shot at their jobs. Now I know what it's like on the other side. I was lucky that I could afford to retire, but for those who really need those jobs, it's scary out there.
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Old 02-02-2015, 03:19 PM
 
Location: Las Vegas
13,879 posts, read 25,306,858 times
Reputation: 26334
I retired at 53 from tech on my own schedule but I never dreamed I was done working. After all, I was at the top of my game with extensive training, education, and experience. I was just going to move, get my house remodeled, and pick up another job.

I didn't think my expectations were unreasonable. I didn't expect to make the same money I had made at my last job.

But life happened and the economy tanked. People like me were a dime a dozen, all unemployed due to automation, globalization, offshoring, and H1b visas. Welcome to the new reality where there are no longer enough jobs that pay a living wage.

I retired in October of 2008 making over $40 per hour with full benefits. Since then I have had several McJobs, all part time, no benefits, top salary $12.10 per hour. Sad! And if it's that bad for me I feel really sorry for everyone else out there!

It's taken me a long time to accept that life just sort of retired me. I looked for a long time and found nothing. But I still check. I would go back to work today if I found something decent. But not likely because my skills are now rusty and dated.
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