When you reach the age of 50, it means that you know yourself. You know what you want from life. This is a feeling of liberation that only we middle-aged adults can experience. But this doesn’t mean resting on your laurels or sitting around on your ass. There’s still a lot you can do in the business world and many different ways to go about doing it. It’s time to realize your self-actualization goals. Our reserve of energy and wisdom is still full.
But maybe you never found the job you always wanted or maybe you’re between jobs or maybe you just want to keep working into your senior years. You might find an older internship is just what you’re looking for, and you might be surprised to discover how satisfying it can be. Fortunately, many companies these days are seeking interns over 50 because they understand our value. Heck, if Robert De Niro can do it in the movie, The Intern, then you can too!
What Do I Get From It?
Whether you get a lot or a little or nothing, you’re probably not doing it for the money. There are paid and unpaid internships so the money really depends on the type of internship you secure. Some companies have even named these specialized positions ‘returnships.’ Even in an unpaid situation, you’ll get a career boost; something that will keep your LinkedIn profile prolific. The position you choose can get you noticed by your next employer. If you’re not seeking a job, being in a professional place can be instrumental in you starting a business in the same or related industry. Plus, we’ll take any chance to school these inexperienced kids, right?
How Do I Get The Internship?
Now, you’re talking! The middle-age intern knows how the world works. He knows what’s what and who’s who. By this time, you also know what made you good at your previous jobs. Take career highlights, zero in on the strengths and work out how these skills can be transferred to the internship you are seeking. Your employers already expect you to be more professional than the fresh college graduate who can’t stop scrolling through his Facebook newsfeed, so you’ve already got a heads-up there. Take the opportunity seriously, bring a comprehensive resume and a positive attitude and convince your interviewer that you are a good fit.
What Kind Of Internship Should I Seek?
The world is your oyster, my friend! Chances are you want a change. How much change? That depends on you. Want to try something completely out of your element? Go for it. Want to try something adjacent to your career so far? Ditto. Both are equally valid choices. Whatever you do, make sure that you have a plan for what you will do after the internship.
Will I Be Able To Cope?
You’ll do just fine. In fact, you’ll thrive. You’ll get to help out in delivering projects. You’ll get to work in a team, building winning partnerships. There is no alternative for the taste of victory. Sure, you might feel a little down when someone younger is doing more or knows more but that doesn’t mean your contributions are any less important. Comparison is the thief of joy. Use the opportunity to learn and grow. See how your experience can benefit the younger lot. They may know their way around a spreadsheet but nothing can replace wisdom earned from experience. In the end, your internship is a cross-generational exchange experience which can turn into your career’s awakening.