Playing Hardball: Why Baby Boomers Aren't Getting Jobs

What can you expect?

This may disappoint you, but I'm not going to write about twilight, second-act, encore or third-act careers, because they don't exist. They're BS concocted terms responsible for furthering the age divide. Don't expect me to tell me you how to get the most out of retirement or how to find fulfillment in your retirement years. I know nothing about retirement, because I'm not retired and probably never will be. In fact, I only know one person who is. And I'm offended that a few prominent suck-up organizations keep publishing badly reported stories about retirement. It's particularly offensive, since fewer and fewer boomers can afford to retire.

For my generation's sake, I wish these organizations would go away. Then we'd be spared their pretentious stories about how celeb oldsters are thriving in their 60s, 70s and 80s. Who cares? If I wanted soapy, meaningless fare, I'd watch reruns of "Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous." These stories have as much meaning to boomers as Harry Potter books. A better idea is a real magazine run by serious journalists who talk to out-of-work boomers struggling to make ends meet. I'm sick of reading Panglossian how-to stories peddling psychobabble solutions.

Now that I've lanced institutions, experts and much of the drivel published for my generation, I urge you read my column and heed my advice. I'm going to give you something new, innovative and refreshingly helpful. It's called the truth. But I caution you, the truth may piss you off, because you'll find it hard to deal with. Summoning one of Jack Nicholson's great lines from the 1992 film "A Few Good Men" maybe it's because "You can't handle the truth!"

I'm kicking off my column with a series of articles explaining why so many older workers aren't landing jobs. While age discrimination can't be discounted, other reasons carry equal weight. Their importance was driven home in many interviews with headhunters and employment lawyers. When I hear the same reasons over and over again, I can conclude only that there is more than a grain of truth in all of them. Here they are: Unfocused, badly conceived résumés; poor interview skills; outdated skills and failure to keep up with changes in their fields; poor attitude; and sense of entitlement.

Why Companies Are Not Interested in Old Experience
Let's get started now, by focusing on the top résumé mistakes made by older workers -- Never reveal age: Play the game or suffer the consequences.

Résumés Don't Land Jobs For Older Workers
Résumés are grossly overrated. Yes, they're essential, but in the tedious and frustrating job-conquering process, they're little more than a door-opener. If lucky, they win interviews, but they don't land jobs. Find out why.