When it comes to the position of seniors in society, the US aren’t Europe (luckily!): from Harry Kissinger to Carl Icahn, from Warren Buffet to Bob Dylan, they are more appreciated and respected there.

Still, within business community, there may be a reluctance to hire the over 50s, in particular in fields that are traditionally considered « young », such as High Tech.

There is much prejudice: after 50 one is less adaptable, tires more easily, costs more, isn’t so easy to manage, will stay less time in the company…. All these concerns could have been justified in the middle of the past century but not now sixty years later. Our life expectancy increases by a quarter each year and there is no doubt that our physical fitness and our intellectual vivacity move alongside each other.

Beyond this clear evidence, there are excellent reasons to hire the over 50s. Here are six of them,that recruitment experts should keep in mind:

  1. A fidelity bond to the employer: after 50, you think it over more seriously before leaving a job. Moreover, there is another 15 years of professional life ahead, which is an important advantage: what company may say it has the guarantee that his executives will stay for at least 15 years?
  2. An irreplaceable professional experience. This is an inescapable fact : in a 30-year career, especially in the case of a diversified one,       more varied situations are faced than in 5 or 10 years, he is therefore better prepared to face a wide variety of issues, both strategic or operational.
  3. A time saving. Associated to the previous point : no need for long speeches nor expensive professional training upon the appointment, the acquired experience enables him to be operational quickly.
  4. Emotional stability. No decision on a whim, age helps one to step back. This is a strength at a time of crisis !
  5. Extended availability : the children have left home, loans have been repaid … as a matter of fact one is often more mobile when older !
  6. Careerism is over. After 50,one is no longer interested in power and sterile games of internal politics: one is turned to results rather than gossip and conspiracies.

In Europe, there is a direct correlation between the economic health of the different countries and the employment rate of employees over 50: in Scandinavian countries, that are economically healthier, seniors work later that elsewhere. In France and Italy we see the exact opposite. What if this is also true for companies?