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ADVICE FOR THE OLDER WORKER

By MARVIN WALBERG - Scripps Howard News Service

With the economy continuing to add jobs, there are more opportunities for mature workers. But those workers must prepare for obstacles that include concerns that they are over-qualified and not up-to-date on the latest technology, among other barriers, according to ClearRock, an outplacement and executive coaching firm headquartered in Boston. - "Mature workers should be well-versed in presenting themselves in the best possible light on their resumes and during interviews," said Ali Chambers, vice president of ClearRock. He offers this advice to job seekers:

-Mature workers should take extra care to create a favorable first impression by exercising regularly, dressing fashionably, projecting a youthful image, and communicating a positive, forward-thinking outlook.

-Highlight your newest technology skills, certifications in your area of expertise, recent degrees and classes. Stress your eagerness to learn new things and dedication to continual learning.

-Convincingly demonstrate how your background, skills and experience will provide the necessary solutions to solve problems and increase revenue so that everyone's salaries will increase.

-Mature workers have had more years to build networks of past employers, colleagues and professional contacts. Cultivating these relationships is time better spent than searching online. Also, mature workers have much-needed experience and skills to offer volunteer groups, which may lead to a job. Serving on the board of directors of nonprofit groups can introduce mature workers to a higher level of networking contacts.

- Mature workers need to be versatile in building social media profiles, developing connections, joining groups and participating in discussions.

- Get recommendations and endorsements from companies or groups with whom you have been working, and compile quantifiable achievements or objectives you helped them realize.

- Some employers are hiring contract employees now, and may add them as full-time workers in the future. Concentrate on getting on board and showing what you can do.

Your mission: Do what others fail to do.

Marvin Walberg is a job search coach.

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