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Ask HN: How to Cope with Ageism?
4 points by ditados 8 days ago | hide | past | web | favorite | 1 comment
For the fourth or fifth time now, I've made it through an interview gauntlet (this time for a well-known, largely remote company) and got the dreaded "the team was looking for someone at an earlier stage in their career" euphemism in a (somewhat late) reply.

I breezed through all the technical discussions (I am not a worldwide expert in the particular niche they were hiring for, but knew all the internals, actually contributed to or dealt with issues in the internals and fulfilled all the requirements), and was interviewed by peers (around half my age), my prospective manager (closer, but easily 10-15 years younger) and moved up the chain until I came across two managers (probably 5 years younger than me) who were visibly uncomfortable with the notion that I would "downgrade" to a senior SE role after having years of management and consulting experience (including being a department head).

I needed that job. Not in the sense of being unemployed, but in the sense of being able to do something I loved again (my current role is... a challenge, in more ways than one), of being there for my kids again, and, to be quite frank, to build something useful.

How do you cope?

What else is there but trying to do consulting on my own? (I'm not in a very big market, and most of it is outsourced corporate IT, zero custom development, etc.).

The options are quite limited.The paradox is explained in this video; http://longnow.org/seminars/02019/mar/13/modern-elder-and-in...

The corporate culture, instead of embracing mature workers who have plenty to offer, chooses the 'cancel culture' to eliminate senior citizen hiring.

The latest technique being employed uses large foreign consulting firms to filter out older workers so that the target firm can not be accused of discrimination - in other words, discrimination by proxy [e.g. insurance companies like Cigna].

The best way to 'cope' is to contact your State Human Rights and Opportunities office and report any and all instances of this activity. Its a free way to begin understanding what your rights are and it shines a bright light on offending enterprises.

This is a large subject that not only includes hiring discrimination but job elimination devices such as performance review abuse and other subtle maneuvers.

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