Looking for a job after 20 years of proudly owning an organization

Jeanine “J.T.” Tanner O’Donnell is a profession coach and the founding father of the main profession website Dale Dauten is founding father of The Innovators’ Lab and writer of a novel about H.R., “The Weary Optimist.”

Expensive J.T. & Dale: I’m in my 50s and have owned my very own enterprise for the previous 20 years. The enterprise took an enormous hit within the pandemic, and I’m exhausted. We’ve survived, however I don’t assume I can do it anymore, and my retirement financial savings are worn out. I began in search of full-time positions, however completely no one is asking me. I’m assuming that is age discrimination. What do I do to struggle again? — Ken

J.T.: Whereas I’d by no means deny that age discrimination exists, I actually don’t assume that’s the case right here. What’s scaring firms off is your 20 years of proudly owning your individual firm. As somebody who’s labored with numerous recruiters, they typically worry that former enterprise house owners shall be tough. It’s typically assumed that an individual turns into a enterprise proprietor as a result of they’re not snug working for another person.

DALE: Agreed. Hiring managers are prone to assume the worst, and meaning they’ll assume that it’s in your nature to provide orders and to seize authority. It’s like that outdated line about cats, how they’ve by no means forgotten that they have been as soon as worshipped as gods. Corporations don’t need cats; they need Labradors, possibly bulldogs or Dobermans.

J.T.: What to do? Making use of on-line is a waste of time. You have to do strategic personal networking. You want to have the ability to inform the story of why you’re trying to work for another person. And you may’t simply say that it’s as a result of your financial savings are worn out. It must be greater than that, as a result of they’ll fear that they’ll practice you, you’ll get monetary savings, then you definitely’ll exit by yourself once more.

DALE: Proper. It’s bought to be about “pull,” not “push.” That’s, it’s worthwhile to clarify that you simply didn’t fail as an entrepreneur, however, fairly, that you simply realized the way you yearn to be a part of a crew. Clarify how you will have come to know that you simply want the sources and camaraderie of a bigger group. And also you show that in an interview by displaying curiosity — go in able to be taught, to not exhibit.

Expensive J.T. & Dale: I bought known as by a recruiter about what seemed like a dream job. I bought all excited, after which he advised me the title of the corporate, and my coronary heart dropped. They’ve been by means of some unhealthy lawsuits and have a popularity for having a horrible company tradition. That mentioned, I do know there’s been some turnover within the govt suite, and the recruiter mentioned they’re making an attempt to make things better, and that’s why they’re hiring. What do you assume? Ought to I even trouble? I positively don’t need to work in a poisonous bro tradition, which is what they have been about. — Eva

DALE: That’s good that they’re making an attempt to vary … or saying they’re. You’re sensible to be skeptical. I’d learn all you possibly can concerning the new executives they’ve introduced in. If that sounds promising, and provided that it’s a “dream job,” why not discuss to them? However keep in mind this: Each division has its personal micro-culture. You don’t need to simply know that some new execs are enlightened; no, you need to know in case your new boss is without doubt one of the nice ones, one who will provide help to develop and thrive.

J.T.: Sure, go on the interview. You’re not going to know if issues have modified until you go and discuss to the people who find themselves at the moment working there. The truth that their issues have been public says to me they perceive and are addressing them. I’d ask to talk to among the staff who’ve stayed on, in addition to among the new staff. It’s unlucky {that a} poisonous tradition ruined them for a bit, however a longtime firm can bounce again. For those who get a suggestion, you possibly can all the time say no; however when you don’t go and the corporate does remake itself, you’ll all the time remorse not going to verify them out. Hopefully, they’ve discovered their lesson, and now they’re hiring folks such as you to make issues higher.

Jeanine “J.T.” Tanner O’Donnell is a profession coach and the founding father of the main profession website Dale Dauten is founding father of The Innovators’ Lab and writer of a novel about H.R., “The Weary Optimist.” Please go to them at, the place you possibly can ship questions through electronic mail, or write to them in care of King Options Syndicate, 628 Virginia Dr., Orlando, FL 32803. (c) 2022 by King Options Syndicate Inc.

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