Request Demo
June 3, 2024

Four Ways To Reduce The Impact Of Age On Your Career Or Job Search

We all know you cannot change your age, but you can, in fact, reduce your metabolic age through a healthy diet and lifestyle. Similarly, we all know that age can become an issue in your career over time, particularly when it comes to the job search. I argue that you can reduce your "metabolic career age" by […]

We all know you cannot change your age, but you can, in fact, reduce your metabolic age through a healthy diet and lifestyle. Similarly, we all know that age can become an issue in your career over time, particularly when it comes to the job search.

I argue that you can reduce your "metabolic career age" by being willing to change a few key factors that affect how others perceive you.

What Can You Control In Others' Perception Of You?

• Your online presence—digital profiles (on LinkedIn and elsewhere), résumé, cover letter, video and audio of you, etc.

• The energy you bring to interactions—your positivity or negativity, etc.

• Your behaviors—how you communicate, your promptness, your competency, etc.

Four Ways To Make Yourself More Attractive To Employers

My work involves advocating for those in career transition. Since I was in my 20s, I have helped people in their 50s and 60s find meaningful and fulfilling work. As such, for the better part of 30 years, I have helped people deal with age discrimination. As a coach and not an attorney, I've found that there's no magical "elixir" that will reduce the negative perception of age by others, but I do believe you can make yourself, as a careerist or job seeker, more attractive to employers.

Here are four ideas to consider as you forge forward in your career or career search. Remember, you can only control certain things in this process.

1. Think aesthetically.

The field of aesthetics is about giving people pleasure through the perception of beauty. Beauty, art and taste possess many forms and come in every color, body type, background and age. It is a large palette, and nobody should be left off. To the extent you can become more pleasing to an employer, it is partly about your appearance but mostly about your mindset.

As far as appearance, dress appropriately for your career. Show up at events, both online and in person, well dressed and with a "look" that seems current, not dated.

Now let's focus on mindset, which is the less obvious facet of aesthetics. Be genuinely curious about other people and your field. Nothing is more attractive to others than someone who is curious, caring and other-oriented.

2. Be more high profile.

Err on the side of boldness. Find ways to speak at conferences, live on LinkedIn or on panels related to your industry. Create a dialogue between you and others that promotes good ideas in your field.

For example, one of my clients was offered the chance to jury a panel talk at a local association group. I told her to jump at the chance. She did. This event helped her become recognized as an expert in her field and vaulted her to the top ranks of local thought leaders because of her high-profile appearance and thoughtful hosting. Another client published a book with an industry expert that almost instantly turned him into a national voice in his field. His association with an experienced person as his co-author let others know his credibility was strong.

Even if you are not willing to be bold, consider becoming a leader locally in your association groups, not just a member. You can quietly build a positive reputation that will let others know you are reliable and professional.

3. Encourage everyone, regardless of age or status.

Some of my clients who have made themselves more attractive to employers, more accessible to the public and quietly stronger to their target network have helped others without recompense. Ways they have done this include volunteer leadership work and educating or mentoring younger people.

For example, I have one client (Client A) who is extremely accomplished. I recently introduced him to another, less experienced client (Client B) who was having confidence issues. Client A asked questions, listened and took an interest in Client B. Client B called me after his meeting with Client A and thanked me profusely for introducing them. He described how Client A had listened to his concerns, encouraged him and seemed truly interested in his advancement, and how this generosity built up his confidence and led him to insights he never would have reached on his own.

4. Become an industry cheerleader.

Watch almost any sporting event. Who are the most positive people on the court or floor, whether their team is winning or losing? Cheerleaders. Their job is to keep their fans upbeat, no matter what is going on.

The lesson here? You become a positive force in your industry by celebrating others, sharing positive industry news, commenting on positive trends and becoming a resource for good ideas that promote your industry. By being that person you will not only become more attractive to potential employers and clients, but you will also become a reliable source of insight into the future. Clients over the years who have leaned into this practice and these ideas have been sought after for printed articles, podcasts, quotes on television and speaking engagements.

Final Thoughts

I firmly believe that by building healthy habits, you can reduce your "metabolic career age" and attract others. This type of attractiveness is not "skin deep," but actually soul-enhancing.

Article written by:  Orville Lynch, Jr.
Mr. Lynch, a member of the legendary two-time Ohio Civil Rights Hall of Fame Award winning Lynch Family. Mr. Lynch is a nationally recognized urban media executive with over 20+ years of diversity recruitment and serial entrepreneur with numerous multi-million dollar exits.
Newsletter Sign Up

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

Sign up for the Career Town newsletter to receive the latest news, upcoming events, and updates from Career Town.