Does Anyone Really think that we can trust our governments to look after us into retirement?
Does anyone really think that people should take back the power to decide their destiny?
This short series of Articles will focus on what happens when you suddenly find that you don't have a job and your Superannuation ain't what you thought it would be, and then, in the second installment, it will focus on the many and brilliant alternatives that are out there, without the effort of having to do physical hard labour, and how you can take responsibility for your future and never, again trust the government with your well-being.
From The Drum (ABC Australia 27/10/15 – the author wanted to remain anonymous)
When you go looking for work at my age they don't tell you directly that you are too old, they imply it with questions: "Will you manage? Do you have the technical skills?" It can be shocking and humiliating.
Financially cocooned and safe in his own retirement, Prime Minister Tony Abbott announced to the Australian people, "you must work until you are 70 before you can retire".
What Mr Abbott forgot to tell Australia was that to get a job you might have to move. Move away from your home, move away from your security, move away from your family and grandchildren, and move away from your social network.
I am 63 years of age, a secondary school teacher, and not entitled to a pension. I don't have enough money to live on as I only have a very small superannuation, because I raised five children, which interfered with my earning capacity and super payments.
With bills accumulating I desperately needed to go back to work. To my shock and horror, I couldn't find a job. Many passive rejections made me realise I was too old for employment in Newcastle.
I have five degrees that I have completed over the past 30 years with the most recent in 2014, at Deakin University. I have two masters degrees.
They don't tell you directly that you are too old, they imply it with questions.
"Do you have the patience to teach challenging students?" Of course they mean the naughty students that both young and old teachers find difficult to teach.
Or, "will you be able to manage, dear?"
Or, "at your age do you have the technological skills to teach?"
Old age is a presumption employers make when they see your CV listing your employment history. Employers don't have to see your birth date to make their blind and inaccurate judgments.
Mission Australia told me that, in the month of June, Newcastle saw 5000 people out of work and seeking employment with only 500 jobs available.
I decided I would do anything - work in a shop, type up accounts, take a secretarial role, work in a bistro, do cleaning - anything to have a job. So as a last resort I tried an employment agency.
One employment agency in Newcastle told me to "dumb it down". I was horrified. I looked the young woman (who was in her late 20s) in the eye and I fervently said, "I fought long and hard in the 1960s for women to have a voice, to be able to access an education and to have equality in the work force and in society".
She blinked, then said, "I am sorry, but you do not even have the skills to be a secretary, and we must take note of your age".
I was shocked and humiliated. I have a typing speed of 65 words per minute, I can type reports; heck, they are no different to typing up a university assignment, and surely could not be harder than typing up a masters thesis.
I am organised and stylish in my appearance. The underlying problem: I have grey hair and a few well-deserved wrinkles on my face and hands.
I realised nobody wanted to employ me. I felt depressed and would cry at 2am in the morning, when all the woes of life visit you instead of sleep. Tears of shame - for being old, undervalued and unwanted - would roll down my face and soak my pillow.
In a fighting moment, I grabbed life in both hands and made an application for a teaching contract in Queensland. I updated my skills listing with the department, informed them of my newest masters degree in the Arts and my willingness to work anywhere in Queensland.
Within a week I had a response. I accepted a job in a high school in a mining and industry town in central Queensland.
On the first day one person remarked, "you're the granny out in the playground, the outlier (a mathematic term for outside the norm)," and giggled.
There were other comments as well, but I don't care. I am old and I am working. I am in the classroom teaching. Petty comments can roll over me and wash away my fear of being unable to pay my bills
Last week I received my first pay. It was an awesome feeling, and, when I walk across the playground, kids yell out to me, "hi miss!" I feel worthwhile. I love it. Not bad for an oldie!
(Our take on that: don't let them have power over you, and there are other ways to preserve your all-important self respect).
Laid Off at 60: What to Do Next
Losing your job in your 60s can be painful, but these 7 tips will help you move forward
May 7, 2012 – www.nextavenue.org - By Kate Ashford
You’re in the prime of your life, just a handful of years from retirement. So what do you do if your employer gives you a pink slip and sends you on your way?
It happened to Robert (his name has been changed for privacy), now 62, about a year and a half ago. “I thought, ‘I am not ready in any way to be without a job,’” he says. “I was too young to be retired, I wasn’t ready to be retired, and I had to start looking for something else. And it became apparent pretty quickly that another job wasn’t going to come along in a hurry.”
The hunt for a new job at 60 can be daunting. After all, your age and experience may mean you'd come with a fairly expensive price tag, making you a less attractive candidate to some employers than applicants in their 20s or 30s. Many employers don't leap to hire people in their 60s.
What to do? Financial advisers and career pros offer these seven pointers:
Gauge your financial situation.
Before you dive into the want ads, “assess where you are financially,” says Sheryl Garrett, founder of Garrett Planning Network. “How long can you go without a paycheck before you’re broke? And what kind of income do you need in that next position?”
You may find that you no longer need to earn what you did at your last job.
Do some serious soul searching. Losing your job could be just the impetus you need to think hard about the type of work you want to do at this stage of your life. You may decide that you don’t want to work in your previous field any longer or that you don’t even want to work for someone else.
“When I asked a client who was a hospital administrator, ‘What would you ideally be doing?’ he told me he wanted to have a bait and tackle store,” Garrett says. “It’s not out of the question to consider a position in a whole new field that would give you personal satisfaction.”
Consider setting up shop. [Why not an online one?]
At your age, with your experience and expertise, you might be in the perfect position to hang out a shingle or act as a consultant in your field.
If so, start by creating a business plan. Then look for experts who can act as a sounding board.
You might also find a community college class that can teach you how to start your own business. “A lot of adult education classes are specifically geared toward this,” says Eileen Freiburger, a financial planner in Manhattan Beach, Calif.
When you go out on your own, it helps if you are covered by your spouse's health insurance plan, at least until Medicare kicks in at 65. But there are other ways to score benefits. For instance, you could take a part-time job that provides health insurance while you’re building a business on the side. Says Garrett: “A couple of friends of mine went to work part-time for Starbucks.” (Employees of Starbucks get health coverage if they work at least 240 hours per quarter.)
If you look for another job, plan on a smaller paycheck - [well, that's depressing]
After layoffs, men and women 62 and older who return to work collect paychecks that are 36 percent less than their previous salaries, on average, according to the Urban Institute. For those 50 to 61, the average pay cut is 20 percent.
That’s not so surprising when you consider that an employee who has been in the workforce for decades may be at the top of his or her field. So replicating that pay isn’t easy.
If you hold out for exactly the salary you just lost, you may never find it.
Think carefully before turning down a great job that pays less, especially if your cash reserves are running low.
But if you really need that income, when you apply for a job, “it’s worth a heart-to-heart with the hiring manager,” Freiburger says. “Ask, ‘If I take this salary, could I expect a bonus? Is there anything I could do — such as accreditation or continuing education — to get up to the next pay tier?’”
You may need to take a full-time job regardless of salary just for the health benefits. “At this age and stage in life, health insurance may be as important as the paycheck,” Garrett says.
When interviewing, commit to the company.
One of the disadvantages of being an older worker in a job interview is that you can’t plausibly promise the employer that you’ll be on board for the next 20 years. But this doesn’t mean you need to share your plan to retire in five years or so if that's what you're planning, experts say.
“During the interview, say, ‘I really want to be a part of this company,’” Freiburger says. After all, who knows? You may not be ready or able to retire as soon as you expect.
Rethink your retirement age. Maybe you’ve been set on retiring at age 65. Unfortunately, if you just joined the unemployment line, this goal may no longer be realistic.
“The idea of being 60 and almost ready to retire, it’s an illusion,” Garrett says. More than a third of workers expect to work past 70 or never retire, according to a survey by the Transamerica Center for Retirement Studies.
This doesn’t mean putting the proverbial pedal to the metal through your mid-70s, however. You might look for a full-time job that requires fewer hours — 40 per week, say, instead of the 60 you put in before you were laid off.
Or you might take a full-time job and gradually scale back hours, through a phased retirement.
OR YOU MIGHT JUST DECIDE TO LISTEN TO US AND START YOUR OWN ONLINE BUSINESS! BELIEVE IT NOT, FOLKS, YOU CAN DO IT FOR VERY LITTLE, IF YOU ARE PREPARED TO SUBSTITUTE HOURS FOR DOLLARS.
Everydayonomics: The despair of being over 60 and jobless
One of the most confronting interviews I have done this year was with Glenda Ellwood-White, a 60-year-old who has been out of work for more than five years.
She lives with her 23-year-old son in a granny flat in Sydney's inner west. Her income is so low she often cannot afford meals and when she does eat, the menu is monotonous.
"I often think my stomach will kill me if I have any more noodles," so I often just have a piece of toast and a cup of tea," Ellwood-White told me.
She likens life on the Newstart benefit to being stuck "on a human hamster wheel".
We do not hear that much about the struggles of older unemployed people such as Ellwood-White, but it turns out they are likely to remain unemployed much longer than younger people.
Analysis by Marcia Keegan, an economist with consultancy SGS Economics and Planning, shows that a quarter of those aged 45 to 64 remained unemployed for more than a year compared with only 15 per cent of people aged under 44.
"If you become unemployed at an older age, your chances of finding a job are a lot lower than someone who becomes unemployed at a younger age," she said.
The problem is most acute for those aged over 60 - two-thirds of Newstart recipients in that age group have been out of work for more than 12 months.
So why are older workers so much more likely to be unemployed long term?
Prejudice is a major factor. The Australian Human Rights Commission says discrimination can be found among the job applicants as young as their mid-40s. A recent job search experience survey found almost one in five people aged 45 to 64 felt their age was the main difficulty they faced in finding work. Ellwood-White claims her long search for a job proves age-based prejudice is "rife".
Another explanation is that employers fear a short period of service from older workers.
"If an employer interviews someone in their late 50s or early 60s, they might think the person is going to retire in a few years or take their superannuation tax-free," Dr Keegan said. "They think they might be able to keep a younger worker for longer, but this is very unfair, because workers in their late 50s or early 60s often want to work for another 10 years or more."
But older workers can sometimes be demanding. When Keegan explored what wages unemployed people wanted, she found older people, especially men, tended to have higher expectations than younger workers. This might encourage employers to go for younger workers, especially if they have been out of work for a long period.
Disability is another factor. More than 30 per cent of workers aged 60 to 64 have some sort of disability that limits job options. In contrast, the rate of disability among those aged 15 to 24 is only about 8 per cent. The good news is that the proportion of older workers with a disability is falling – among 60 to 64-year-olds, the rate dropped from close to 40 per cent in 2003 to about 33 per cent in 2012.
This year's federal budget introduced a new policy to reduce mature-age unemployment called Restart. Employers will receive $10,000 over two years when they employ a person aged over 50 on income support for at least six months.
Even so, older workers are a significant part of a growing longer-term unemployment problem in Australia. This year, the rate of long-term unemployment has climbed to 1.2 per cent of the labour force – well above the decade-long average of 0.92 per cent. The Fairfax-Lateral Economics Wellbeing Index – which puts a dollar figure on national welfare – shows the well-being cost of long-term unemployment has surged in the past year and is now a $2 billion-a-year drag on the nation's collective well-being. Much of the pain is being felt by those aged in their 50s, 60s and 70s.
12 Things I Learned From Getting Laid Off In My 60s
09/10/2012 10:05 PM
ANN BRENOFF - SENIOR WRITER/COLUMNIST, THE HUFFINGTON POST
I've been a journalist my entire working life. I've been a writer, an editor, and a nationally syndicated columnist for a major print daily. I can even claim a share of a Pulitizer prize for my work covering the Northridge, California earthquake. And I was completely stunned when I fell victim to the recession and was laid off in March 2008. But as they say, what doesn't kill you just makes you stronger. I survived; actually I did more than survive, I thrived. Here's what losing my job at age 59.5 years old taught me:
GRIEVING IS FOR WIDOWS
I devoted my final commute home -- an hour stuck in traffic on Los Angeles' 10 Freeway -- to sobbing uncontrollably. I rolled the windows up tight and blasted Springsteen so loud the car vibrated. I banged the steering wheel so hard that my fists hurt. And then I pulled into my driveway, dried my tears, and faced my family. Grieving time was over; from that moment on, I never looked back. I accepted that what I lost was just a job, not a loved one.
DON'T WASTE TIME BLAMING ANYONE, INCLUDING YOURSELF
I didn't spend a minute wondering why I got the tap on the shoulder instead of the next guy. Didn't we learn on the kindergarten playground that life wasn't always fair? Finger-pointing, repeating the gory details of the injustice that befell you to anyone you can get to listen -- it's just such an energy-zapper. Save your emotional strength for rebuilding your career
CONFIDENCE BREEDS CONFIDENCE
If you don't believe you're fabulous, why should anyone else? Take a lesson from Facebook postings here: Life is wonderful, you are amazing, things couldn't be better. And believe it; if nothing else, you'll sleep better if you do.
ANGER ISN'T ATTRACTIVE
Put on a happy face and mean it. Nobody wants to hire a sad sack or someone angry at their old boss, their company, changes in their industry or the economy. Me? I quietly cancelled my subscription to the newspaper that canned me and let it go at that. Nobody wears anger well.
YOU ARE A PROFESSIONAL; BEHAVE LIKE ONE IF YOU WANT PEOPLE TO TREAT YOU LIKE ONE
[WE ABSOLUTELY ECHO THIS SENTIMENT!]
As a writer, I was frequently asked to write for free. I insisted on compensation -- although sometimes that compensation came in peculiar shapes. I would barter services -- I would do some marketing work and get my son tutored, my dog groomed, my closets organized. During the two years I freelanced, I chose to write an unpaid blog for The Huffington Post because of the platform and exposure it provided. Each time I posted, it led to paid writing assignments. Be strategic about your work decisions. People who work for free are volunteers and volunteers belong in the nonprofit world.
GIVING TO OTHERS IS A GOOD THING
I think I knew this my whole working life, but answered the need to give with my checkbook instead of my heart. Being unemployed taught me that there were ways to help others that actually felt better. I formed a support group for entrepreneurial women running their own businesses. I brought in advisors, speakers, and we all helped one another. Helping people helped me stay whole. I might not have been able to write big checks to charity, but I could certainly take a break from my own struggles to listen to someone else's.
[OUR TAKE ON THIS - DON'T GET MAD, DON'T GET EVEN - GET CREATIVE!]
YOU AREN'T ALONE
There are dark moments to being unemployed. You worry about whether you'll have enough money to pay your bills and you constantly wonder when it will all end. Since unemployment is by definition a state of aloneness -- you don't go to an office of unemployed people every day -- it's easy to feel like you are the only one experiencing the misery. My suggestion: Go to your nearest Starbucks. Plenty of unemployed people have adopted Starbucks as their office away from home. They have free WiFi and you can answer job ads, respond to emails and write your cover letters from there just as easily as you can your garage. I found that Starbucks also had fewer spiders than my basement and the occasional unemployed screenwriter with great stories to tell.
[OUR TAKE - DO WHATEVER IT TAKES AND IF YOU ARE NOT A CREATIVE PERSON, CALL US AND WE WILL MENTOR YOU - FREE!]
YOU MAY NOT BE ABLE TO REPLICATE WHAT YOU LOST
The sooner you accept that reality, the better off you'll be. There are entire industries that have essentially been eliminated.
[Once upon a time before motor cars, there was a whole buggy whip industry - who remembers them?]
The most frustrated among the unemployed are those who continue to look for jobs that don't exist anymore. I get that they loved what they were doing and want to find a job doing it again. But it's a new marketplace out there and in many cases, they need to find something else to do.
[I read, just yesterday, that "Deep Learning" is now such that computers can learn faster than humans and they will replace whole industries in the next 5 years - apparently one of the first to go could be the call centre industry, where robots will take over and be far more efficient..go figure!]
WILLIE SUTTON WAS RIGHT
When asked why he robbed banks, Slick Willie said, "Because that's where the money is."
If Sutton was interested in finding work in today's economy, he'd explore some re-careering options -- because he'd go where the jobs are. [It's a safe bet he would go for an online networking type of business]
Your skills may be terrific but if they can't get you a paycheck, you need to work on getting some new skills. Learning how to be flexible -- which means learning how to change -- is a tough lesson for a lot of us. Community colleges have really stepped up to the challenge of re-careering people. Their fees are low and in many cases, online classes are offered. Look for programs with in-field internships because internships are today's foot in the hiring door.
[NOTE FROM GATESY - GO WHERE THE TRENDS ARE - MLM, AFFILIATE, SURVEYS, DROPSHIPPING, EBAY, VOICEOVER WORK, WRITING, COPYWRITING AND THERE ARE A HUNDRED MORE GREAT IDEAS THAT ARE YET TO BE EXPLORED..]
LESS IS MORE
Trite, I know, but true nevertheless.
One of the first things people do when they are laid off from their jobs is try to reduce their spending. We didn't hide our situation from our children. They understood that the family had suffered a financial tsunami and we could be in for a rough ride. We battened down the money hatches: We became coupon-clippers and got pretty creative when it came to taking vacations (house swapping, mooching off friends and relatives, using frequent flyer miles.) Funny part, but I don't recall a single instance where my kids whined or were upset about not getting something. They understood the difference between their needs and their wants and as long as we were a family, we were solid.
[note from Gatesy - kids are totally resilient, so don't hide anything from them - if you are going to an online business, involve them as they will surprise you with what they can teach you]
SAVING TRUMPS SPENDING
Saving never felt as good to me as spending -- until I lost my job. The frugal habits I formed during my two years as a freelancer have stayed with me. While we do now eat out on occasion, I am mindful of the fact that living paycheck-to-paycheck without setting aside something for the rainy day is just plain stupid. I came to the savings party a little late, but won't use that as an excuse for not doing it now.
[....and it is a good attitude to have when you are starting your online business, so that you can feed your business..]
DON'T LET THE BASTARDS GET YOU DOWN
Looking for a job is a process of continuously dashed hopes and a steady stream of rejections -- until it isn't and then you get a job. The journey to a job is a regular roller coaster, but without much in the way of a thrill. It takes a concerted effort to keep your spirits up. But you have to. Build in some positives to the program. Spend time with people who affirm your value.
[NOTE FROM GATESY - DON'T WAIT TO BE DEPRESSED, IT'S NOT COMPULSORY - JOIN AN MLM, OR A MEETUP GROUP OR ANYTHING, BUT GET YOURSELF AROUND POSITIVE PEOPLE, ACTIVELY SEEK OUT IDEAS, ESPECIALLY ONES FROM "LEFT FIELD" - YOU DON'T KNOW WHERE YOUR INSPIRATION CAN COME FROM]
OUR TAKE ON ALL OF THIS..FROM A WORK AT HOME PERSPECTIVE
First, to all the young people reading this, don't think it doesn't apply to you. It very well could, so don't wait for the drama, decide how you want your future to be, don't rely on the government to help, take the intitiative and do what is right for you, your family and your future.
Older folks, I hope that this resonates, because if it does, look at a Work from Home Solution and put yourself in a situation where you never look back.
Stay with us on this site, we have put out some great ideas already and will continue to do so.
Remember, the internet is like this incredible ocean full of tiny fish that all represent money, swimming in the stream, and that means opportunity and all you have to do is work out how you are going to net your share of them. Find a need then find a way to satisfy that need, solve a problem, then stick your net in the water and grab those fish that swim into it..
They will swim into your "Sales Funnel" and that is what we will focus on in coming weeks.
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OUR MLM SERIES IS BASED ON MY BOOK "15 SECRETS TO SUCCESS IN MLM"
CHECK IT OUT HERE