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‘Younger workers are threatened by me’: Businesswoman marks one-year job-hunting anniversary with rant against employers

Employers have said she's too old after being rejected for 30 job vacancies

Highly-qualified businesswoman, Gail Smith, celebrated her one year ‘currently looking for work’ anniversary with a LinkedIn rant after being rejected for over 30 jobs. She took voluntary redundancy in June 2017, with the idea that she could cherry pick her next job.

Despite applying for around 30 jobs, Gail is still unemployed a year later and believes that it could be because the ‘younger generation feel threatened’ by her decades of senior management experience.


Smith aired her frustrations on job website LinkedIn and said in her search for a new job she has been told she is both ‘too old’ and ‘overskilled’.  This has even led to her playing down her experience after interviewers told her it may be a negative for potential roles.

Her husband has even suggested she ‘apply for a job at a supermarket’ – but she believes she wouldn’t get it due to her experience, which includes managing teams of 250 staff.

According to her LinkedIn profile Gail has previously been employed with computer firm Hewlett Packard and at the Automobile Association (AA).

Gail, who lives in Newcastle, wrote in her rant: ‘So many people have work anniversaries – well here is a new one: Currently looking anniversary.

‘One year and so far I have been told I am:

‘-Too old, yet our government thinks I have at least 15+ years left in me.

‘-Over skilled, that comes with maturity and I would hope employers would look at that as a benefit.

‘I would not apply for a role if I didn’t want to or think I could do it.’

While many commenters were shocked and called her situation ‘outrageous’, others were not surprised and she play down her wealth of experience and not disclose her age, advice she has now taken.

Gail said: ‘I don’t put these posts on [LinkedIn] lightly but I was particularly frustrated [on this occasion].

‘I had been in an interview for a role I could have done easily and it was a role that interested me.

‘But the interviewer said ‘oh when I first saw your CV, I did think that you might be too old for this role’.

‘I was like ‘ahhh’ and I looked at her and she said ‘I know I shouldn’t say it’. I thought too right you shouldn’t say that. But I thought ‘just leave it’.

‘I have chased them for feedback [on exactly why I didn’t get the job] for two weeks and I keep getting fobbed off, which is outrageous.’

Regarding her experience, Gail said: ‘It is being treated as a negative. Now whether the younger generation is feeling threatened by more mature people… but like I said in my post I wouldn’t be going for these roles [to just] tick a box before my retirement. I am a long, long way off retirement.’

Having previously been open about her age on job application forms, Gail has now started refusing to disclose her age when applying for jobs and is now going to down play her work experience.

When Gail was involved in recruiting people, she says she would never have looked over someone for a position due to their age.

The job search continues and hopefully there won’t be a second-year anniversary to celebrate.

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  1. Your experience is very common – whether you were in a high flying job or at the lower end. Society does not take kindly to getting older even though we constantly look for ways to prolong life and insist people need to work longer before collecting a pension. Nobody says where the extra jobs required are to come from.

    You can never hide your age – either you leave off your past experience or lie about what you have done. Experience and maturity count for nothing. I am in the same position as you and am horrified by the blatant age discrimination and like you when you ask for feedback none is forthcoming – the best was “you just need to move on”. The number of adverts I have seen which talk about the need for accuracy and professionalism but yet have grammar and spelling mistakes which not even an eight year old should be making is truly scary – and the people behind those adverts are the very same that make sure you never get an interview.

  2. I know exactly what you mean. ..the younger generation has no respect and no people skills and yet they get the job. I too am a year away from 50 and it is so difficult to adjust with the younger generation.
    I think we should set up our own firm where we can recruit 45 and over lol

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