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From shock jock to shell-shock! A forced retirement.

Posted Oct 01 2008 10:43pm

If you are like me, then you can commisserate with the unending hours spent sitting in traffic. I'll admit it, I'm a Howard Stern fan. I listen to him and laugh for over an hour's drive on my way to the office every morning. But what would happen if tomorrow, I were called into the HR Director's office and given the proverbial finger...the pink slip? How would I find my next job? Who would hire me? Just shy of 50, I am keenly aware that I'm virtually unemployable in today's marketplace...or at least in my current definition of employable.

If you are a fan of this blog, you'll recall that my business, Gen Plus, is dedicated to the success of the 50 plus demographic. If you are new to Gen Plus, then you are about to find out my obsession: that I keep a sharp eye on all things 50 plus-related given the finger of darkness I see looming on the horizon.

(My mother, a brilliant writer and life interpreter) takes exception when I talk more about the Looming Boomer than the Post WWII baby, but I focus so strongly on the looming Retirement boom because it will outpace all other demographics due to sheer size. So for my faithful 60 plus readers, take heart, you are included in every waking marketing thought and Gen Plus resource!)

Which brings me to the topic of the day. As the pieces of the management crisis combined with voluntary as well as forced exile...um, I mean retirement, are coming together, key players are starting to draw the picture with broad strokes. In the May 16, 2005 issue of Fortune, business writer, John Helyar, fills in some of the detail that many are avoiding looking at. To read the full article, click on the link:

http://www.fortune.com/fortune/careers/articles/0,15114,1056189,00.html

It is a lengthy article that touches on everything from unplanned early retirement, to ageism, to exective search. However, in summary, Mr. Helyar, brings the issue of ageism right to the forefront (and particularly on the heels of the Supreme Court decision giving special status to age, right next to race, sex and religion) and he does so with great insight into the challenges that we are currently facing.

He brings home the reality of unplanned early retirement...for many CEO's, CIO's, Senior Executives, who at an early age can not find a new position after 20 - 30 years in progressive career roles. He is talking about us. And how do we survive such a jolt? With tremendous diligence, change of direction and strategy, and a bit of luck thrown in for good measure.

As you all have noted, Gen Plus is servicing you before we have even felt the first ripples of the seismic thunder of unemployment that may hit us within the next 5 - 10 years. The time to act is now. If you see the writing on the wall, or suspect that the axe is on its way in the next few years, or have been jobless for any length of time, get your resumes posted on our site today. Be proactive about your job future, so that you will be able to enjoy Stern on the morning drive (or your Starbuck's or NPR...or whatever gets you to work!)

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