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How I Landed Multiple Job Offers Within Minutes

And here's how you can, too — even if you're over 50.

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illustration of woman looking at different job opportunities
Paige Vickers
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When I lost my job in a reduction in force (RIF) last year, I scrambled to find a new one — and discovered that looking for a job in your 50s (or older) is a little more challenging than when you’re younger. At 56, I thought my age might be a detriment to some employers, and used the saturation bombing technique, applying for 193 (!!!) jobs in the next three months. My diligence paid off — I managed to nail two promising job offers within five minutes of each other.

Whether you’ve been laid off, are switching careers, or are simply looking for a new gig, job hunting today is rife with opportunities — and minefields. Here are some things to do while searching for your new position.

Do: Start right away

Yeah, getting fired stinks. But I suggest starting your job hunt immediately — I was sending out résumés the day after I was RIF-ed. Amy Ridgeway Glawe, 55, started looking on LinkedIn for job leads the day she was laid off, and saw one that sounded promising. She applied, interviewed, and boom — she had a new position right away.

Do: Look for support

“Whether you’ve been recently laid off or left a job or been out of the workforce for a long time, find a mentor or a buddy,” advises Catherine Collinson, CEO and president of the nonprofit Transamerica Institute and the Transamerica Center for Retirement Studies. “It’s easy to feel very alone — look outward and look out for people who have been down that road. Ask to meet for coffee or for a Zoom and ask about their experience and for tips … and find organizations to get involved with or take a class. It’s a great way to learn new skills, meet new people and learn about new opportunities.”

Do: Update your skills

According to Collinson, only 40 percent of people are keeping their skills up to date. Use this time to take an online class or learn a new software program you can include on your résumé. LinkedIn lets you take skill assessments and if you pass, it gives you a “badge” you can share on your profile to highlight what you know.

Do: Polish your resume

Give your résumé a critical look — it’s important to be current with best practices, Collinson says. Consider what keywords you should include to help it penetrate HR firewalls. “A recruiter doesn’t have 20 minutes to read a long résumé,” she says. “Include enough to demonstrate your experience and accomplishments and raise interest.” Consider deleting your graduation dates, too, to downplay your age.

Do: Create a Compelling Online Presence

Make sure your LinkedIn profile is up to speed. That means having a professional, well-lit headshot and a well-written summary about who you are and what you have to offer, along with a concise version of your résumé. In addition to skills badges, ask people to write recommendations for you, and make sure your profile shows that you’re “open to work.”

Do: Be Proactive

Not all jobs are found online — sometimes the best approach is a direct one. Jen Bender, 55, is an avid golfer who has worked part-time as a “bev cart girl” on a golf course before. Last summer, she picked a golf course she liked, walked in, and applied for a similar job. “I actually ended up getting hired as a bartender and cross-trained in banquets as well,” says Bender.

Do: Play Up Your Experience

Ann-Marie Dittmann, 57, found a job as an assistant director of patron services at a performing arts center in 2021 by highlighting her background. “My age actually worked to my advantage — they had several younger people in the position previously and were hoping to bring more stability to the department and position overall and were looking for someone with experience and maturity,” she says. “I started as extra help, but they knew they were going to be looking for an assistant in the department very soon, so it was understood that it was likely going to be a part-time to potential hire situation.”

Do: Cut yourself some slack

Job-hunting can be stressful and time-consuming. Make time for self-care and try to stay positive during your search. “When going through the process, be kind to yourself,” Collinson. “Keep your inner critic in check.” I treated my job search like a full-time job, but made sure to “clock out” every night and took weekends off so I wouldn’t feel so overwhelmed.

Do: Consider the big picture

Consider your overall goals when deciding what kind of position you’re looking for, and whether to accept a job offer. “Don’t be afraid to let changing life needs and priorities guide your career path to some extent,” says Dittmann, who took a job to let her be near an aging parent. “This probably won't be my last job change in my life, but it was a very good one for me at this point.”

Do: Be open to opportunities

Finally, be flexible as you’re searching. I initially hoped to find a job as a health and wellness writer, as I’ve covered those subjects for decades. But I wound up applying for a content writer position at a mediation firm in Atlanta because I used to be lawyer. While interviewing with the company, I realized it was a great opportunity — and now, nearly a year later, I’m thriving at a position I would have never realized I’d love.

When's the last time you had to look for a job? Let us know in the comments below.

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