If you’re in your 40’s or 50’s, there’s a good chance that at some point in your work career, you will, or already have experienced age bias. Whether you’re passed over for a promotion in favor of a younger employee or are trying to land a job in a field that values youth over experience, age discrimination is real, and it’s affecting millions of Americans.

The ProPublica Institute performed an analysis that indicated that around half of all workers over the age of 50 will lose their long-time job before it’s time for them to retire. The study found that many of these people will either be unceremoniously laid off or verbally coerced into retirement.

We’re going to look at what age discrimination is, several examples of it, and what workers who are nearing the age of 40 or 50 can do to help avoid it.

What is Age Discrimination?

The Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967 (ADEA) makes it illegal to discriminate against someone over the age of 40 in an employment environment. However, there are several loopholes and legal challenges that have made age discrimination somewhat hard to prove.

For example, the law in its current form allows a company to ask a worker both their age and graduation date. While the potential employee does not have an obligation to respond, it can set the stage for future discrimination.

The court and legal systems aren’t much help either. In 2009, the Supreme Court made it harder for older workers who have experienced proven discrimination to prevail in a lawsuit by requiring more extensive proof than before.

Examples of Age Bias

While it is currently illegal to discriminate against someone due to their age, it still happens regularly. Here are some examples of age discrimination that a worker over the age of 40 could face in an office environment:

Company Culture – In some companies, the majority of their workforce is comprised of workers in their mid-to-late 20’s. Someone in their 40’s or 50’s might have a difficult time fitting in with the younger generation in both a work and social context.

Older workers who apply for jobs in these types of companies should also realize that the workday doesn’t usually end at 3 pm sharp. Many younger workers enjoy meeting at a local bar or watering hole after work to socialize and network. Older adults might find they have very little in common with the younger crowds—and their culture.

Coworker Comments – Passing comments such as “ancient” or “behind the times” or “over the hill” made by coworkers also constitute age discrimination. While on the surface, they may seem innocent and, in some cases, playful, there is a hidden intent and meaning behind them.

Promotions – Another way companies can discriminate against older employees is to continually pass them over for a promotion. This is often due to upper management feeling that they can pay a younger person less money in exchange for more job responsibilities.

Layoffs – Companies will sometimes mask age discrimination by performing a round of layoffs wherein the majority of older workers are let go while younger ones with less seniority and experience are kept.

Work Overload – Companies will sometimes try to force a person to retire by giving them over-complicated projects or job duties that are destined to fail. The newer, easier projects are then given to younger employees. If the older employee quits on their own accord, then the company didn’t have to fire them illegally.

Avoiding Age Discrimination

There’s no real way to completely avoid age discrimination in corporate American in this day and age. Due in part to the loose laws that define it, as well as certain legal “grey areas,” more and more workers will experience age discrimination at some point in their lives.

This is why many people age 40 and up are looking into starting their own business. When you work for yourself, there is no age discrimination. You won’t be passed over for a promotion or have to deal with coworkers making chide comments about your age.

When you run your own business, you’re in complete and total control.

The TravelHost Advantage

TravelHost is an ideal business opportunity that will enable you to put your years of experience to work for you. It can help provide you with financial freedom, flexibility, and allow to you regain control over your work life.

When you become a TravelHost Owner, you’re in complete and total control. We’ll provide you with a First-Year Experience onboarding package and launch plan which will allow you to hit the ground running.

To learn more about this fantastic business opportunity, contact the TravelHost New Business Development Department at (972) 556-0541 or click here to get started.


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Jason Bahamundi

VP Sales and Marketing at TravelHost
I have spent my entire career in the multi-media industry with experience in broadcast/cable TV, Radio, Print and Digital. Developing and executing a marketing strategy is my passion, but not my only passion as evidenced by my Instagram page. I love cooking and fueling my body for endurance sports through a plant-based diet. When I am not working on multi-media marketing, swimming, biking, running and cooking I can be found sharing laughs with my wife and step-son.

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