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Monday, 23 March 2009

Lost and Found in Translation

More and more variously unfortunate folks are discovering the joys of scanning the job adverts.

If, as I am, you’re of A Certain Age – significantly north of 35, that is – you’d be well advised to understand what the various agencies and employers are actually saying in those adverts. It’ll hack you off. But it will also save you a lot of valuable time.

You see, I’m a freelance – so by definition I look at the job adverts rather more often than your average salaried staffer. Also I get to do more interviews, a privilege that is most definitely more dubious as the years pass. But the feedback can be useful, as well as hacking you off (again).

Here’s a little advert and interview speak translated:

“We want someone bubbly” – not even up to age 35. More like 20: further, the money’s probably crap.
“It’s a fast paced environment” – over 35s can forget it.
“Pressurised environment” – hint: it’s not about aircraft. More ageist drivel.
“You’ve got so much experience” – you’re being told you’re past it.
“Too much experience” – too old.
“Overqualified” – guess what? Yup, too old.

There are, no doubt, more examples of thinly veiled ageist tosh going the rounds. So I may revisit this subject, although not too often. Wouldn’t want to find myself overqualified.

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