Can a 73 Year Old Get Work? Here’s my Answer.

So I got a question from “X” today:

Hi Gerard, how do u go about finding a job if you are 73 years old, but perfectly capable?  No one will hire whether on a casual, temporary or part-time, etc., basis.

Here’s my reply:

Hi “X”, thanks for your question. And of course you have challenges. Not many 73 year olds are looking for work. Many are not what they once were in terms of health and strength and even mental alertness – I know, my father who died at age 74, 3 years ago, was in no fit state to work anywhere. He had severe dimentia and cancer!

So certainly there are stereotypes and prejudices and doubts that employers may have. And we can’t wish that away. However if you still have value – business value – skills that you can use to benefit a business, then someone, somewhere will give you an opportunity.

If you follow the basic recipe I outlined in my e-mail earlier today, then with persistence you can succeed in finding work. You may have to adjust your expectations, you may have to be flexible, you may need to develop a new skill or two. But if you focus on offering employers what they need, you will find someone who offers you an opportunity.

Do not however think that employment agencies will help you. They won’t.

Don’t judge the job market based on the response you get from them!

Also, don’t think that you’ll be successful answering job ads either in newspapers or online. You likely won’t. Although one exception may be using the likes for Gumtree to both find job ads from local businesses and to advertise yourself.

Start where you are:

  • Define exactly how you can be valuable to a business, what skills can you employ to help them, what do they need that you have?
  • Then target local businesses, visit them every 2 weeks to offer what you have, be boldly persistent. If you’re healthy, well spoken, are “together” then word will spread.
  • Network amongst your friends and neighbours. Are you a member of any associations or clubs? Network with them, explain what you’re looking for and what benefits you have to offer.
  • If you read about business personalities in the local newspaper, pay them a visit – repeatedly – and explain how you think you can offer their business some skill and benefit.
  • Look after yourself physically, keep fit. Read a lot – keep up-to-date with technology as far as you can (there are many free courses on the internet).

If you persist with this kind of positive approach … your results will be guaranteed.

Hope this helps! Keep in touch. I’d love to hear how you’re fairing.