Re: Remember : Cisco or not, might be too old to roll...

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On Sat, 10 Aug 2002 21:34:26 GMT, Tom MacIntyre

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I'm in the same boat. I tried to make the jump from shipping clerk to IT
pro. I dove back into college, and got my degree (magna cum laude) just
before my 40th birthday. I then moved to Germany (for family reasons). I
thought that companies would jump at the chance to hire me. Little did I
realize. Every third job listing states age requirements (the vast majority
not older than 35). I'm studying for certs left and right, but nothing seems
to do any good. I've had a total of two interviews in the last year. I've
probably sent a good 500 CVs out. My attitude is to never give up -- which
is my main strength, AND my biggest curse. When I get a rejection, I send
two more out. All this does is cause my downward spiral to accelerate
exponentially.

I'm now 43 years old. How do I make a better life for myself when I put all
I have into it and still come up empty? I busted my hump, and all I have to
show for it is a pretty diploma, some certs, and about $30,000 of student
loans. I have no idea what to do.

Mike



Re: Remember : Cisco or not, might be too old to roll...
Tom,

Sounds like you are in a difficult situation, but there are a few
things you may want to do.

1) Although this is probably not practical, I'd look at getting out of
Germany and temporarily relocating to a country where they are legally
unable to discriminate on the basis of age. In Australia, for example,
you aren't expected to put your age on a resume (though its usually not
too difficult work out what age somebody is by their resume). The aim
of a resume is to get to interview. If you don't get to interview, you
can't sell yourself.

2) More practically, sit down and do a really deep audit of your
existing skills. Look at what you have learnt from your previous career
and modularize your abilities and knowledge into transferable skills.
Although you are new to IT, you are not new to the workforce.
Reconstruct your resume for every job you apply for and for every
company you approach.

3) Relise that only 25% of jobs are formally advertised, and that IT
the percentage is even lower. Join the local professional society.
Attend every single vendor/reseller event you can find. Join a user
group. You need those professional contacts to get a foot in the door.

Rather than beating yourself up, change your tactics.

I know most of the above sounds like standard stuff, but it actually
works, and its amazing how many people DON'T do this. Career
advancement or change needs to be treated like any other professional
task. Plan, plan, plan, execute.

I'm only in my mid 30s, but I've made some non-linear shifts (from
Academia to IT support to IT architecture and now into project
management), spanning two languages (only one that I was born with),
two countries and four cities.

Goof Luck!

Mike T. wrote:

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Re: Remember : Cisco or not, might be too old to roll...
wrote:

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When I'm looking for fresh graduates I choose from a hundred resumes.
That said, a degree plus certification merits an interview.

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Wow, I can't believe that.  In America, that's totally illegal.

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Good luck, Mike. Yamaha had some decent suggestions.

Re: Remember : Cisco or not, might be too old to roll...
Hideous.

I'm about to turn 33 and as a purely technical guy I might have to face
that pretty soon I'm going to have the same troubles.  I even turned
down opportunities to get into management because I know I would hate
it.

It's hard to believe sometimes I've been doing IT for 10 years.  Maybe
it's time to start that emu farm.


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