EditorialsBy Matt Bud, Chairman, The FENG

Have you ever had the feeling that the world was against you? How can I tell you this? It is.

To be a member of our august body you need to have at least 20 years of work experience. You also need to have held a senior level title and earned at least $120k per year. Most of our members have a lot more experience and have earned a lot more. You would think this would be a good thing, but you would be wrong.

Okay, if you are at the lower end of our membership in terms of age and/or compensation, many of my remarks are not entirely correct. But, if you are in your late 40’s, early 50’s or even older, how can I explain to you that you are in the fight of your life if you want to find another job?

As financial folks, we tend not to be an easily excitable group. Most of us have been smart enough to sock away a few bucks over the years. Hey, we manage other people’s money. We should know how to manage our own.

Then comes the issue of severance, if we have recently lost a job, usually we are long service employees and do okay.

All of these things are good in a sense. In another sense, they cause us to relax and think we can take our time. I know in the back of your mind you know there is some urgency, but on the other hand, you have the money to be patient and carefully select the right opportunity.

None of this is intended to make you panic and take a job at low pay with terrible hours on the moon, where you can only go home once a century. (Space shuttles are VERY expensive.) No, the purpose of this editorial is to get you to take each and every opportunity you see as seriously as possible.

Whether you want the job or not, keep in mind that you shouldn’t turn down a job that hasn’t been offered to you. Your goal, without being disingenuous, is to get them to offer you the job. In other words, you need to do your dead level best in researching the opportunity and presenting your credentials in the best possible light.

Too often, especially when you first hear about an opportunity, there is a tendency to let things play out a bit before you put much time into them. Given that you have time to work on preparation, I would recommend you pull out the stops and go into EACH AND EVERY situation with “guns blazing.” If you don’t appear to really want the job, trust me, there are others who do. And, they may be more desirable from some stand point than you are.

While I don’t believe that older workers are damaged goods in ANY sense, my belief system is not widely held. I know you may look like you aren’t working very hard, but the truth is that you just aren’t digging ditches and filling them in again, which is why all those other folks LOOK like they ARE working hard.

As a member of The FENG, your primary competitive advantage after your wealth of experience is our remarkable membership directory, which we work at day and night to keep current. Several of our recent website upgrades were focused on making it easier to check your directory listing so your fellow members can contact you when they need help. If you have done so, and they have done so, we will all be able to reach each other as needed.

And, when you do need to contact another member, PLEASE have at it. The core principle of The FENG is that our good offices are ALWAYS open to each other. When another member calls and asks for your advice that is a great honor being bestowed upon you. We answer those calls, firm in the knowledge that when we need help, it will be there.

When you find an opportunity of interest, the first thing to do is see if any other member has ever worked there. You can do that by using our Member Directory Search feature. Using it, you can easily identify an appropriate member or members.

If you want to take a casual approach to job search, that is your decision. I suggest “guns blazing” is a far better approach, and one that will ensure you will always be contributing your many fine talents to some deserving organization.

As you know, he who hesitates is lost.

Regards, Matt

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