While brands are most often thought of as consumable products, brands are also services, organizations, and even people. And at no time is it more important to think about this comprehensive definition of branding than when you are seeking a job.
As part of our marketing practice at Glue, we help people establish and grow their personal brands. In recent years, we’ve frequently been tapped by those over 50 who are looking to advance their careers or re-invigorate them. They come to us because they feel (rightfully so!) that they need a strong personal brand to gain a competitive advantage or at least level the playing field. The obstacle they’re facing, ageism, affects women even more than men.
According to a study by AARP, sixty-four percent of women say they have experienced age discrimination in the workplace, compared to 59% of men. In our opinion, this difference is magnified when applied to the hiring process.
While there is a lot that women over 50 can do to overcome age bias when looking for work, we have developed a very simple set of dos and one significant don’t proven to be successful time and time again:
- Leverage your network— connections care more about your experience than your age
- Address any meaningful technology gaps— you’ll be expected to be savvy as part of the interviewing process and on the job
- Come to the table more prepared than any other candidate— get ready by talking to industry insiders, which will help you focus your messaging on what’s most relevant and important given today’s trends
- Shorten your resume to what matters— the further back you go, the older you look
- Update resume content— use keywords aligned with the opportunity that you’re seeking
- Consider a hair and make-up refresh— especially if you haven’t done that in a while
- Invest in a Ring Light for Zoom interviews— to present yourself in the most flattering light, literally
- Date yourself with anecdotes and examples that a younger interviewer may not be familiar with or naturally able to relate to