All sorts of changes are occurring in our working lives, but one that has huge potential to add to the economy, but is actively ignored, is the large pool of over 50’s (of which I am one) who are working at far less than their potential, and willingness to contribute.

This huge group are usually less than fully employed as a result of things beyond their control, often having been loyal and productive employees for many years find themselves on the scrap-heap after a merger, rationalisation of activities, or business failure, and sometimes simply personal chemistry, and they struggle to gain further employment.

Too old, too experienced or over-qualified.  How can you have to much experience or qualification, and age is irrelevant? it is attitude that matters!!!!

Employers, often 15 or 20 years younger see them as a risk, particularly the airhead 30 year olds who  seem to inhabit HR departments, and market based recruiters. They see the experienced over 50’s as  too set in their ways, lacking in energy, just looking for a sinecure before retirement, or just easily bored by a job they may have done successfully in the past.  Sometimes this may be true, but consider the other side, the experience, networks,  work ethic and embedded knowledge that they can bring.

The waste represented by this “semi-grey” cohort of keen, experienced, but grossly under employed people is disgraceful. It should be an issue in any electoral conversation, and it never is. However, you can benefit when hiring if you view potential employee risk assessment just a little differently.