Are Women Smarter and More Employable?

In a word, “Yes.”

According to recent news stories, women now hold more degrees than men. Also, in the current “he-cession,” 10% of men are unemployed verses 8% of women.

You can slice and dice figures all day and make your own conclusions about these trends as stated by a 2009 US Census Bureau report, but the bottom line is the bottom line: More women than men have undergraduate and graduate degrees and men’s unemployment is higher than women’s.

Yes, you are right–perhaps women hold more jobs in government, healthcare and education which are areas that have not been hurt as much during the Great Recession, but guys…we need to pick it up a bit.

Let’s learn from the women…choose “stable” career fields, keep learning, and market yourself.

One tool to help guys (and gals) to do improved self-marketing is the Twittervator Speech-your sales pitch about you. It is your “compelling offer” which is both digestible and interesting for a potential employer. Oh yeah, it is done in 140 characters or less to accommodate today’s social media trends. Come on those of you over 50 years old…you can (and must?) play on this field!

America’s Job Coach is currently doing FREE Twittervator speeches to the first ten folks who request them. Just go to to contact me, or, you can open a dialog via your comments to this blog.

Learn more about TwitterVator Speeches in the blockbuster: “Laid Off & Loving It for 2010

And way to go women!

America’s Job Coach

Will 2010 Lead to 2020 Vision or 2020 Hindsight?

We just saw the end of a year and the end of a decade. A very turbulent decade. No rehash needed because you have seen all the life changing events in the media lately. Ten years is a big chunk of time in anyone’s life.

So if you agree that this hunk of time is noteworthy, shouldn’t it be marked with big ideas and big goals? What will your life be like in 2020? Will you have 2020 vision or will you coast through another ten years and only THEN have 2020 hindsight? That date is only ten years away. Just think how fast the last ten years came and went. 9/11 seems like yesterday, doesn’t it? A little strategic thinking may really get you postured well occupationally for the future.

What if YOU had known ten years ago that 350 to 400 million people globally would be putting vast details about their work history and/or personal traits, families and friends on social networking websites? Would that have been good to know? Could that have affected your job or your industry? What if you could have, ten years ago, guessed right about some trends in banking or other industries?

I am not directing us all to become wise sages here who can predict the future and then profit from that. What I am suggesting is that you, at the start of an exciting new decade which is going to be RIFE with change, give some thought to the world of work, invention, trends, entrepreneurship, etc. Where will the new decade take you?

How will the marriage of technology and health care, the emerging world of finance, the ongoing “green” parade, or the globalization of most anything affect your occupation? Remember, today radiologists in India can read the scans made of your hip which the lesser educated US-based technologist just took of you in the local MRI room. If those kinds of changes are occuring in the medical world, how will things change in your world?

The movie “Up In the Air” is a new release staring George Clooney. His character travels constantly to companies which are downsizing or laying off their employees. He is the hatchet man who breaks the bad news. One of his stock lines during the terminations is that this action will now allow the people who are cut to go on and finally pursue their dreams.  He implies to his public that he is almost helping them by “liberating” them.  This blog will discuss more about Clooney’s movie later, but hold Clooney’s thought in mind: Is your life standing in the way of your dreams? Can your 2020 Vision or Hindsight apply to YOUR decade ahead? 

What do you think? Add a comment about where you think everything will head and how that could affect your career. Will globalization make your job obsolete? Or, will offshoring have proved ineffective in your industry so your skills are back in demand?

Kick out your ideas here…Maybe as a group this career advice forum can come up with the next FaceBook, or something similar… THAT would show some 2020 Vision!

Think big…think bold!

America’s Job Coach
Author: Laid Off & Loving It for 2010

Are You Sacrificing Enough?

OK.  This post might be the one you show your unemployed spouse…or maybe not.  Do you have a 50-something or 60-something spouse who is in a job / career transition and just not doing enough? 

What does that mean? It means that job hunting or career changing or job transitions may get even harder in the near future and extra effort or sacrifices may be required. It means people may have to make some sacrifices about what jobs they may or may not consider or accept. Some “experts” are predicting that 2010 won’t produce a hotter economy for job creation than 2009.

That could mean that some of the “chronic” unemployed may have to make some sacrifices. I am not referring to the sacrifices typical of a newly laid off person. Most laid off people immediately trim the family budget to the bone.  

No, I am referring to “the T word.”  T is for tradeoffs. We all have them. Maybe we sacrifice by working in a field or company we prefer to be in but do so at the cost of lower compensation. Maybe we chose a job we dislike but stay in it because of the pay. Maybe we commute a total of four hours a day in exchange for stability.

What tradeoffs are you making or ready to make? Is it time to consider doing some other kind of work while you wait for your dream job to come in? This question is practical for both working people and non-working people. In his book “Winning,” Jack Welsh the former General Electric CEO says most all workers make some kind of tradeoff. 

Using Jack’s famous philosophy of candor (with yourself) may help you to assess what internal tradeoffs you are willing to make in order to achieve progress in your career or work. 

But remember, you only need ONE job…and you CAN find it!

* * *

News:  Keep checking back with this blog as an announcement should be coming in a week or so about an exciting event which will benefit one lucky reader/contributor!

America’s Job Coach

The Dow is at 10,000…Who Cares?

The 50 Over 50 Project is a ”Community of Career Advice”     for 50 folks over age 50 who are in a career transition.  

Summarize YOUR career dilemma in a comment below to gain job hunt pointers from this blog community. 

So the Dow Jones Industrial Average got over the psychological barrier of 10,000 points last week. I wonder if it will go to 11,000 this week?  Probably not. But do people care?

Well, I do care actually. And the investments of millions of people as well as the well-being of millions of companies across this great land do care.  So why the headline above? 

Last weekend, Seth Rogan of the Weekend Update skit on the perennial  Saturday Night Live TV show perhaps summarized the feeling of millions: Rogan mentioned how the Dow broke 10,000 and how 15 million unemployed people at home, in their pajamas in the middle of the day, who were eating Twinkies, cheered with delight. 

That isn’t a perfect quote but you get the idea. The talk is that the recession will end and the recovery will occur sometime in the next month to the next two years (it depends upon who you listen to).  I don’t know who to believe but Seth was right: Recovery or not, too many people are still stuck unemployed or underemployed and know the NBC TV schedule way too well.

If the Dow goes to 20,000 and there are still 6 people for every 1 open job out there, the unemployed just won’t care what the stock market looks like. Granted jobs are always a lagging indicator during a recovery because firms want to be sure things are improving before they add to their payrolls again. 

And the most strategic unemployed people WILL care about the stock market and the recovery. Because we attract what we expect into our life. And if we stay negative, we’ll keep getting negative. 

How about you? Do you think the economy is picking up out there and that there are more jobs now that the Dow Jones Industrial Average has reached this level? Or do you feel stuck on main street despite Wall Street’s success?

Share your thoughts below and keep the faith!

Paul M.

America’s Job Coach  

Can You Sell Yourself In 30 Seconds?


The 50 Over 50 Project is a ”Community of Career Advice”     for people over the age of 50 who are in a career transition.  Just list your career-improvelment related question as a comment to get helpful pointers from fellow blog readers! 


The Atlanta Journal Constitution (my new favorite newspaper–I’ll tell you why below…) ran an article on October 9 about how Atlanta firms were hiring again. 

The article mentions that firms are hiring more consultants, more people with specific, not generalist skills, and the importance of candidates/job applicants needing to sell themselves in a short, 30 second story.

America’s Job Coach agrees with the above–especially the need for your own personalized TwitterVator Speech.  Here is the short version of what a TwitterVator Speech is: 

  • List your strengths in short phrases
  • Figure out what your tight niche is (what you know better than most anyone else)
  • Focus on what the problems, needs, goals, and opportunities are within your present industry or the one you want to enter
  • Shake all these up in big jar and write it down in 140 characters or less

Why 140 characters? The twitter world knows. And the linked in status update box knows too: You can send out tweets or updates OF THAT LENGTH as often as you like (but don’t wear our your public or spam them!!). 

There is much more to my concept of a TwitterVator Speech (the blend of the old fashioned Unique Selling Proposition, the Elevator Speech, and the restrictions/opportunities available via today’s social media tools like Linkedin, Facebook, Twitter, etc., etc., etc.

You have what you need to get started on your own TwitterVator Speech above. If you want to learn more, check out my web site or book but I’m not linking to them here because I am trying to be a helpful voice here, not a shill for services. 

I’d be thrilled to see you take a stab at writing YOUR TwitterVator Speech HERE in this blog where it is safe and free. The readers will help you and the exposure can’t hurt. We’ll craft it together so you have a sharp “pitch.”

Oh yeah…you must be able to back up your pitch. Sure we can together write a strategic summary for you but don’t be a clanging bell only. You must have the goods or the track record to back up what you are “hawking.”

Give it a try and I hope to see your TwitterVator Speech draft in the comments box below…

Paul David Madsen

PS: I like the Atlanta Journal Constitution because their logo is AJC. Can you guess why that acronym is interesting to me?

Do As I Say, Not As I Do…

OK, OK… I am guilty! 

This community forum is about my facilitation of helpful career advice from cyberspace. The advice is from and for people who are in some form of transition as they enter and go through their fifties.   But here is the problem:

I have failed you!

I have found that the older people get, the more they like routine. We all have those older relatives who want to know two weeks ahead of time what time a dinner event is scheduled for. That way they can mentally prepare for it days in advance and be ready two hours ahead of actual event. 

While I obviously don’t think people in their 50’s and 60’s are OLD, I do realize that CONSISTENCY matters. I don’t know if the elasticity and suppleness of youth is gone by ones’ fifth decade or what it is, but people like routine as they progress in their lives.  Yes, I can show you some anal retentive 22 year  olds as well, but you know what I mean.

Routine matters. Routine matters when you are building a career, a family a fortune, or just about anything. Yes, we can “luck into” something good in those categories on occasion, but with regard to job hunting or career transitioning, the value of “routine” is high. 

I won’t repeat the often told tales of how Michael Jordan or Tiger Woods or many well-known, high profile sports, cultural or business performers have reached their achievement levels due to nearly obsessive levels of drill, repetition and routine. 

But I have failed you, dear blog readers, due to MY lack of routine. You haven’t known when to check back in on this blog because you don’t know when the new stuff is going to be posted.  And with all the noise on the internet, you are unlikely to come back if you don’t know when to do so. 

I have been inconsistent because I too often waited for a juicy, success story of some formerly laid off person.  They may be in dialog with me via this blog or directly with me through Or, I also hesitated when  “Suzie” was asking me about resume guidance and I waited to tell her story until it was complete. 

No more. I will not make you keep wondering and waiting for these tidbits. Even if the stories are not complete, I’ll throw out relevant, confidential career dilemmas so you the reader can comment on them and hopefully add your helpful comments to this career advice community. 

I will do a better job of “communing” with and communicating to this advice community. No more long pauses between posts while waiting for the other shoe to drop. No more hesitation for “perfect” content before throwing out some relevant stuff. People who need your advice so I will give you the chance to give it. 

YOU can keep this community helpful, relevant, entertaining and inspirational by offering your stories or the stories of people you know who succeeded (or didn’t). I can talk about how Brett Favre was laid off and loving it but I’d rather hear about how your neighbor got cut after 24 years with a Fortune 500 company and then started her own successful consulting company (like the woman did in Laid Off & Loving It For 2010.

I will strive to be more consistent and routine with my content posts here. You’ll see SOMETHING new and relevant almost every day.

Thanks for your loyal following and thanks also for your input and comments which will only make this community more vibrant. 

And speaking of dinner plans, it is time me to execute mine!  

Career Transition hint for today:  Be CONSISTENT in your job hunt efforts. Don’t fluctuate despite discouragement.  More about that later next week…

Layoffs Denied in Omaha, Nebraska?


The 50 Over 50 Project is a “community of career coaching” for 50 people over the age of 50 over a 50-week period.


Yesterday in Omaha, Nebraska a hi-tech company did a round of layoffs. While people getting the axe is far from new news these days, this firm had a history of fast growth, steady employment, and long tenure.  So this event is a shock to our community and an even bigger shock to those who were cut. Some of those layoff victims fit the demographical focus of this blog–they were over 50. Many had been with their firm for a long, long time. 

Their pressing question then is:  

What does a long-term employee, who is on the older side, who may have a narrow skill set for their local market, who maybe hasn’t kept up with newer technology, and who has above average earnings, DO NOW

The answers are many so we’ll address things over the next several posts. 

The first thing which might help these laid off Omaha folks is to realize their situation has some similarities to cancer. I have been very close to cancer’s worst impact so I am not trivializing it. And, I admit few people DIE from being laid off. So what is the similarity? It is this: How victims react.     

Here are the “Stages of Grief,” from Elizabeth Kubler-Ross’ book, “On Death and Dying:”

  • Denial (this isn’t happening to me!)
  • Anger (why is this happening to me?)
  • Bargaining (I promise I’ll be a better person if…)
  • Depression (I don’t care anymore)
  • Acceptance (I’m ready for whatever comes)

Do you see how these grief-related steps have heavy overlap for a person who has just been laid off and is nearly frightened to death? 

If you do, tell others who might benefit about these steps so they can start their process of “vocational healing.”

I’ve been laid off many times and have interviewed or led seminars with hundreds of others who have also been cut. So, our next few posts will explore this “teachable moment” we have right here in River City. Circle the wagons with your laid off neighbors or friends and we’ll work through these phases together…

As always, PLEASE offer your thoughts to keep this a “community of career advice.”

Paul David Madsen
Author: Laid Off & Loving It For 2010



The 50 Over 50 Project

As we reflect today about 9/11, we are all brought back to remembering just what we were doing at the moment of the attacks. And we also reflect on  the “Pre 9/11 USA” and the “Post 9/11 USA.” 

Before the attacks, the nation was winding down from a somewhat “happy place.” The economic climate was just starting to head downward. The  recent burst of the  “dot com bubble” was starting to be felt, but “The Roaring 90’s” were still a fresh, positive memory. There were cracks in the workplace wall, but the it was still standing.  

After 9/11 we were shocked, rattled, distrustful, and suspicious.  Employers  froze and began robust layoffs.  Innocence was also lost due to distrust of firms like Enron, WorldCom and others. The tragic events of the 9/11 directly affected millions of Americans who had no relationship to the dead (other than our shared citizenship).  The paradigm of job security and endless prosperity collapsed.    

But, America’s citizens are a resilient lot. And today isn’t only about looking back. As long as we never forget, I think it is OK to look ahead and learn from the past. 

Since this is an employment-related blog, I ask am asking you what  has changed for you or your vocation over the past 8 years?  How did this tradgey affect your career? What is different about your work, “Pre-verses-Post?”  Consider sharing your story…    

Never Forgetting,


PS: Check out Labor Day’s first post to this blog to learn about the mission of The 50 Over 50 Project.

Inaugural Post

You have just discovered a new place to learn tricks and secrets to your ‘more splendid’ vocational situation!  Its Labor Day  2009 and I just launched this new blog called… 

“The 50 Over 50 Project.” 

Over the next 50 weeks the world and I will offer free job coaching and advice to 50 people who are over 50 years old, and, who are in some form of career predicament.  

Why is this only for 50+ and 60+ somethings?  Because career predicaments traditionally hit this age group the hardest — in any economy! 

These secrets to your success are NOT from me, America’s Job Coach. These secrets instead are the wisdom of “the cloud” or  “the collective.” 

For nearly twenty years the attendees of my career-improvement seminars said their favorite part of the course was its group forums.

That’s where attendees collectively brainstorm  solutions for each others’ career problems. Well, that forum has now gone global via this blog!

The goal of this project is to guide people who have lived at least five decades into a better vocational place, however they define that. Their work situation may involve boredom, burnout, unemployment, under-employment, a desire to start their own venture, career restlessness, or simple livelihood unhappiness.    

By Monday of each week, workers ranging from executives, to doctors, to laborers will submit their career predicament (anonymously) IN 100 WORDS OR LESS to the blog. By Thursday night, I will have chosen a respondee from the submissions and offer my humble advice. Then, the collective blog readers can chime in to help!    

 I am not a lawyer, a shrink, a counselor, a CPA, and make no business offerings here (nor should you). If you need those services, seek a competent professional person to help you. This is just a friendly forum launched on a day which Celebrates Labor.

The irony is that today more people are unemployed than have been for 30 years.  So, let’s see if we as a group can help fix that!  Consider sharing your career quandary, or offer your solutions for the 50 Over 50.

I look forward to your profound participation in The 50 Over 50 Project and hope to see some of you jump into the action…  


America’s Job Coach


Published in: on September 8, 2009 at 7:09 am  Comments (2)  
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