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I was in the Automotive retail /sales for 24 years ... December 2015 The owner of the company I worked for retired and closed the doors ..
About the last 5 years before that happened I was telling myself when he goes I go meaning I did not want to do this kind of work anymore ( just got burnt out ) ... I did not have a plan then and I do not have a plan now ... I find myself ( like the article says ) ...wanting to do something lesser and with that comes lesser pay ... anyway I am still looking ...


David, I hear ya. I've been at my current job for 9 years. Doesn't pay as much as I could make if I had my computer skills in order. My problem is, I want to do it alllllll. LOL I need to focus on one thing that I believe I'm really good at. So, essentially, what I'm saying is that I don't have a plan, either. I hope you find what you need, and soon!


I have 30 years with the DOD, talk about a specific careerfield! I was totally burnt out in my job(s)- shiftwork, stress but couldn't find any movement in the field. I'm playing with cyber on the outside but it pales in comparison to my previous work...how to sell myself on "retail" versus US security issues? I have no problem going back to school, if its not a waste of my time and $$$. What to do for an encore when I still have a couple of kids at home? (i.e. - the salary has to more than cover sitter costs) Too young to be out of the game, too old to take starting pay without growth or development options. We'll see- lots of nibbles but the pay is ridiculous, back to "nights"? Good luck all!


I just finished getting B.S. in Business administration with a focus on information systems and I have an Associates Degree in Computer Science but no experience in anything but medical financial area. I am having such a hard time finding something and I am so in debt with student loans.


Thank you for all of the comments. Have you had your resumes reviewed by a career coach? This might be an easy thing that could make a big difference in your job searches.

Mike Butler

Interesting suggestions; all very true and applicable to everyone!
But, my only comment is to the Article - quote: "While completing an application is a means to sitting in front of hiring managers, you must try as many sources, techniques, and tools as possible. You can never rely on just one thing as it will likely disappoint." What ARE the sources, techniques, and tools that one should use? The author needs to realize that many of us aren't in touch with what all the current "job search lingo" means. As I may be on the road in a month or so, it would be nice to know what I am missing in the current climate.
The only advice I have found that works over the decades, "It's not WHO you know; it's who knows YOU!". Network, network, and when you're sick of networking, get out there and keep on networking. All but 2 of my jobs were through someone else that met and knew me! And the 2 others were temp agency, or, online application (that only worked that one time). When people get to know you and your skills, they can often land you a position in a company once they get there themselves. Even something as trivial as helping a first timer job seeker out with a resume will get points.. BUT.. still 1 - 2 months of search for every $10K of salary..


I think number four is a poor, or at least unclear, choice of words. Yes, the objective is to get results, but you should feel satisfaction about getting calls, and other signs of interest. It is motivating and exciting. And that translates into taking further and more intense action. If one is to take the attitude of "Big deal, it's only a phone screen. They will probably talk to 20 other people and take a month to even get back to me," it is very hard to keep motivated or excited and that will permeate your interactions with any prospective employer.


I have a life philosophy that has worked well for me: I ask myself, "How would a baby and a dog handle this?" No, I don't mean I pee on a rejection notice or cry at the top of my lungs in a restaurant. I mean, when I am applying, or being considered for a job, I am totally focused on that job. I believe I will get it. "Of course you will like me; how could you not?" (Dog part - yes, with a "p"). Also, I'm not going to listen to now many times you tried and failed. I don't care how many times I've fallen and hit my head. I'm going to get up and walk (baby part). It may sound corny, but really, how else would a dog be able to communicate with us without being able to speak. How would it, without being in control of its daily life, be able to get anything it wants? And if babies thought like us experienced adults, how long would it be before it gave up on learning to walk, talk, or even understand daily life? Now, I know some people say, "What about the definition of insanity/stupidity - doing the same thing, expect different results..." Well, to that I say babies learn to find better things to grab onto to help them get up. Dogs learn it doesn't help them to steal cookies off the counter. They modify their behavior but they never give up on their beliefs that they will accomplish their tasks and they never let momentary defeats derail them.


Hi Kerrigan,
I used to coach federal employees and facilitate workshops for DOD employees. You are in a spot so many people are in. School is an option but not for everyone. Connecting with others outside your circle could lead to options you don't know about. LinkedIn is one of the best places to go to find groups in your industry, and connect with people who can introduce you to other possibilities. If you are not on LinkedIn, it is one of the best resources to mine for possibilities. You don't have to settle.


Hi Eliot,

I don't know how many people over the years have told me they've tried everything, but solely apply to job boards. Beyond's efforts help many people find work he or she desires. You cannot afford to rely on passive efforts or just one way of finding work you want. This comment addresses those who don't network or use the many other tools available. People want to be found for jobs too, so LinkedIn helps. You can connect with others online, so social networks is another. All of these are small components get to the big picture.

Scott A. Sipes

I have utilized all of the techniques spoken of on this blog;networking, job boards, finding the hidden markets etc. Employers say my qualifications are impressive in the HR and Sales fields, yet I still remain severely under-employed. I know employers are not supposed to discriminate based on age...disability per Title VII but they do. Even my current employer is discriminating against me. You see, I am caught in catch twenty two situation. I have been disabled since the age of 18 due to a stroke. Since that time, I have had a 10 year career in HR and a 5 year career as an Account Executive where I was #2 in the nation for a service company. Yet now that I'm in my fifties employers cannot get past my age and disability even though I have the proven skills and talents.
I have achieved every goal I set for myself after my debilitating stroke; obtained a BS degree that doctors said wasn't attainable. Recently achieved my PHR certification. Lead project teams. Gained accolades as stated above and doubled my sales territory. I know this isn't the forum to vent my frustration but I am looking for assistance and advice. I have applied for over 200 positions in the last 18 months. I have had some phone interviews and a couple of interviews. No offers.
Employers or recruiters cannot accept me for the achiever I am despite my limp and speech patterns. I don't want to be in retail the rest of my life. I have more to offer! All of the Washington State employment services including the disability office have closed my cases. They say I am fully employable.If this is the case, why aren't I employed in either of my chosen career fields.
I apologize for the tenor of this correspondence. If anyone has any advice please write to me.


Hi Scott,

I can see you're discouraged. At the same time, you have some fight in you. For sure, after 50 (just like me), the best work is to come. There are some things you can try to put your name in potential employers space. Unfortunately, no single strategy is a magic wand, and with some patience, it may work depending on the positive energy you extend:

1. Volunteer
There are non-profit organizations that could use your expertise and possibly do it virtually. It may take a little research but you would be surprised who could use your 10 years of experience as a consultant. You can also quell the doubts of anyone who thinks your limitations impede your ability to provide value.

2. Volunteer on Board of Directors
You can have even more influence by getting on a board. It is not as hard as you think. Small non-profits might be perfect for this time of opportunity.

3. Try small non-profits
Don't apply on a job board, but use LinkedIn to see if you can develop some relationships there. They would also have relationships with other small non-profits to refer you if they like you. Note one of the key words here is relationships.
Be valuable more than what you expect back.

4. Check YouTube for companies that hire disabled workers
You would be surprised of the number of employers who want the public to know they would hire. It may lead you to other resources and listings.

5. Try blogging
Blogging can bring people to you if you're willing to write about what you know. You can put your knowledge and experience before them. It will take time, but even if you succeed at getting a job, keep up the blog so you will continue to add value to others and your career.

I hope this helps. I'm sorry I don't have quick solutions, but don't give up. You seem as if you have much to contribute still.

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The Confident Career blog:

Emily McKinney
As Nexxt's Digital Marketing Copywriter, Emily understands job seekers trying to find their way. After starting out in fashion, then advertising, she has found her passion — writing.

Julie Shenkman
As Social Media Manager for Nexxt, Julie hears from job seekers and career professionals every day, and she endeavors to write articles that address common concerns.

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