Tips when Starting a New Job as a Senior Citizen or Retiree

by on January 24th, 2011
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Think back. Do you remember the first day of your first job? Did you feel completely overwhelmed wondering what you had gotten yourself into? Did you feel awkward and not up to the task? Now fast forward to many years of employment. You are a senior citizen who has retired and decided to go back in the work force. It seems like it takes you a little longer to grasp those minute details. Well let me give you a piece of advice. Relax and take a deep breath. It won’t always be that way. Here are some tips that may help you make that transition successfully.

Ask Questions

Never feel embarrassed to ask questions. Rest assured you are not the only one who is thinking the same thing but are too scared to ask. My Dad used to say, “The ignorant question is the one that is not asked”.

Take Notes

Keep a small notepad or spiral notebook where you can write down questions that you need more in-depth answers to. I would suggest that you compile several questions at a time if possible. However, if an immediate solution is needed at a particular point, don’t hesitate to inquire.


It’s not necessary to show your discomfort on your countenance when you’re confused. Displaying a smile or pleasant demeanor sends a message that you aren’t going to allow yourself to be stressed. I know that can sometimes be easier said than done. But honestly, it’s hard to be stressed out when you’re sporting a pleasant smile. And no, it’s not necessary to grin like a Cheshire cat. A smile also sends the message that you are approachable.

Ask for help from co-workers, especially from those who have been doing it for a long time

You can definitely learn from people who have a good working knowledge of the job. Try developing a good working rapport with them. They have a wealth of information that often goes untapped from timid workers.


Take advantage of any available training that will help you do your job better. While training cannot take the place of actual “hands-on” experience, it can at least give you a foundation upon which to build.

Talk to your supervisor

Hopefully your boss wants the best for their employees. It makes their job easier if they have competent workers. Approach them with any lingering concerns that you might have. Perhaps they might have you work along with another co-worker for a while.

Exude Confidence

While your job may first appear to be a jigsaw puzzle waiting to be put together properly, encourage yourself by knowing there is something that allowed you to be chosen for the job.

Don’t be too hard on yourself

Trying to learn everything in one day is not realistic. That would be more like the impossible dream. Embrace this new opportunity and let it propel you to new heights.

Remember, you won’t always be the new kid. And maybe, just maybe you can help that next new person that comes along because of your experience.


Personal experience

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