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Over 50 and Jobless? Join Social Networking Sites

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We’ve all heard the saying “you can’t teach an old dog new tricks.”  We all know what it means, we all know how true it usually is, but is it still relevant?  Is now the time, if ever there was a time, to start teaching all the old dogs out there, some very new, very important tricks?  Turns out, that answer is a very loud, Yes.

The current economic climate, despite the global warming that rages on around us, is chilly.  There are more people in every economic sector losing their jobs, worried about losing their jobs, or currently searching for replacement jobs.  The truth is, it’s scary.  I just found a question that someone submitted to the Wall Street Journal that addressed this, and questioned if new social networking technology is necessary for these “old dogs.”

The question posed was the following:

“How important is it for educated, laid-off professionals over the age of 50 to join networking sites? I am very Web and computer savvy, but do not really care to get involved with Facebook, LinkedIn, etc.”

Wall Street Journal impressed me by saying that the person in question would be “doing yourself a disservice not to have a profile on a networking site in the current job market, career experts say. It’s becoming increasingly common for recruiters to use these as their first point of contact with potential employees. Without one, you could be in danger of being overlooked.”

Being overlooked, in today’s technological landscape is the worst fate one can suffer.  It doesn’t matter how old you are, what your current job status is or what industry you’re in, every person should have at least some sort of social networking profile and presence.  Heck, even the Wall Street Journal agrees.


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  • Ken Camp

    Since I fit the demographic, over 50 and unemployed, I feel like I can add some thoughts to this.

    Whether you’ve been involved in social network from the beginning, as I have, or you’re joining for the first time in the newly unemployed state, there’s something to keep in mind. The power of the network is in the power, support and encouragement you get from friends, colleagues and online acquaintances. The power is the people in your network.

    If you’re unemployed and joining LinkedIn or Facebook simply to find a job and leave, you won’t find real value. You’ll experience frustration and be very disappointed. What these services do provide is a way to stay in touch with colleagues, industry groups, business sectors. Building and nurturing those relationships may well lead to the next job. But it may not.

    Don’t overlook the value in the people you connect with. That’s where the power lies in social networking.

  • Sunday

    Good point, well put. I think there is so much hype (online and off) about Making It Big Quick that it’s easy to forget this fact in the hubbub. You may well get jobs or readers through knowing more people, but it’s not always a straight line. Sometimes you work hard looking for apples and the universe offers you an orange, as Julia Cameron says.

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