As people live longer and longer, it’s becoming more common not to want to give up work in your late 50’s and 60’s. Many people still feel they have the energy and desire to work and continue developing their skills, contributing to society, and doing what they love. That’s why there are a growing number of older workers looking for a job. While it may feel a little disheartening at times to be significantly older than other people applying for jobs, we want to show you why being older can be advantageous.
What are the advantages of being an older worker?
You know what you want from a job.
One of the most valuable things you have as an older worker is clarity on what is important to you in a job. Many young people struggle to prioritise what they want and end up feeling trapped in careers they don’t enjoy. With age comes a great sense of perspective, and you can use this to find a career that works for you. This may manifest in you turning down and a job that pays well but doesn’t satisfy your creativity. Or you might know that financial security is essential to you, so finding a job with great benefits is your priority.
Fewer family commitments
Hopefully, as you move into this new phase of your working life, you will have fewer family commitments and, therefore, more time to develop your career. Perhaps you had a long period off work to raise your children, and now they are grown-up, you want to focus on your career again. Being an older worker is a brilliant opportunity to focus on yourself and find personal satisfaction after many years of focusing on other people. You may be able to take on more exciting projects and work activities which you would have previously had to turn down.
A lifetime of skills and knowledge
Being an older worker means having built up a vast array of skills and a breadth of knowledge that less experienced workers won’t have. This is a huge advantage when applying for roles as more and more employers are beginning to see the advantages of hiring more experienced staff members. As well as knowledge and skills related to the role, you will also bring with you a level of life experience and a development of soft skills, which are essential for independence, creativity and productivity in the workplace.
You have more confidence in your abilities.
As well as having more experience, you will also have a greater sense of confidence and security in your abilities. Knowing where your strengths lie is an extremely valuable thing to have and highly sought after in the workplace. Being an older worker and having more confidence also means having the self-belief to try new things without fear of embarrassment. This will help you to take risks and be adventurous in your work.
Ability to explore a new passion or hobby
Finally, being able to work later in your life means getting the opportunity to explore something new. For some people, this is a chance to explore something previously a hobby or side project and try to turn it into a career. There is less pressure to make it into your dream career as you will have already completed much of your working life. Instead, this is an opportunity to try something new and take a leap of faith.
To find out more about hiring older workers and the benefits of employing more experienced staff, visit our guide for employers.