Dream job (comment thread)

Let’s talk about the elephant in the employment office, so to speak: how hard it can be after age 40 or even 50 to get a new job—especially one that you enjoy, is financially rewarding, and feels like it comes with a future.

Obviously, this isn’t the case for everyone. We have some fantastic readers here who are over that age and who have been very successful—found their dream jobs, so to speak (sometimes, multiple dream jobs). But, statistics show they can be the exception to the rule. And the “rule” involves things like:

Now that I’ve set this bleak stage, let’s go back to the exceptions, because that’s what I’d hope for anyone I care about who has lost a job—or even who might be working, but whose hair turned gray before they found a truly enjoyable, financially rewarding vocation.

A couple of months ago, I told you about an ebook that I’m working on for Understandably readers about word choice and communication. That’s coming along very well, and I hope to have it ready by January.

But, part of the big plan here at Understandably is to have a parade of content like this—all kinds of cool great stuff for paying subscribers—also available to everyone else, too (just not for free; I have to make a living, right?).

Anyway, the second book that I *think* I want to include in this series—one that Kate and I talked about extensively before her medical leave—will cover best practices for finding jobs, starting businesses, and basically figuring out your vocation if you’re, say, 40 or 50 or older.

This is where you come in. I don’t get a ton of information about my audience, but I have a strong sense that many of you are right in this demographic. There’s a lot of collective wisdom and experience on this list.

So, I’d like to ask you some questions—and maybe convince you to share in the comments, or reply to this newsletter. I’m thinking about things like:

  • Have you reached age 40 or 50 (or more) and embarked on a new career or a job search?

  • How successful were you? And do you think you faced different or harder challenges than younger people?

  • What were some of the strategies and tactics that you used? Was it “straight out of the career playbook” stuff, or did you come up with less typical ideas?

  • If you faced setbacks, what were they like? How did you deal with them? How did the story end (if it has an ending)?

  • Additionally: Have you started a business over age 40 or 50? Was it your first time, or have you been a serial entrepreneur? And what kinds of failures, successes, and lessons do you have to share?

I’m very excited to hear what you come up with. If you’re up for it, I can imagine doing some one-on-one interviews or group interviews with some of the people who reply. (In fact, once I see what we get here, I’ll probably put out another call for people who might like to be part of that process.)

For now, however, I thought this would make a really cool Friday comment thread, and maybe help me to think about how to organize this whole thing. (If your suggestions wind up in the ebook, of course, you’ll get credit—and maybe some other cool rewards if I can be creative enough to think of something good.)

Thanks for considering. We can discuss your ideas in the comments—or else, feel free as well just to reply to this newsletter (It will go directly to my inbox) or email me directly. Thanks, and have a great weekend!

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