• Courtney Kirschaum

How seashells crush ageism. Just ask Warren Buffett

Meet Joseph Gayetty. You know this guy's product intimately. And it's been all over the news this week. You may even have an extra stockpile of it. Old Joe is widely credited with inventing this week's trending panic-buy: toilet paper.   Gayetty's invention was introduced in the the mid 1850s as Gayetty's Medicated Paper.  Flat sheets watermarked with his name. (Yes, his name.) Obviously the need is as old as humanity itself.  Popular pre-paper options throughout history include: leaves, grass, ferns, corn cobs, maize, fruit skins, seashells, stone, sand, moss, snow and water. Seashells?! Aren’t you glad you missed that version?   

According to the History of Toilet Paper (an actual site) Seashell use was common among “coastal people” but coconut husks were also an option. Compared to seashells? Hand me a coconut.

To be specific, Mussel shells were the seashell of choice

Here’s why I mention this unexpectedly popular topic.  Things change, evolve, and get cast aside (seashells) when something better comes along (coconuts!) The "coastal" people who allegedly used this method probably didn’t throw down their mussel shell to squeeze the Charmin overnight.  Evolution takes time.

Resumés aren’t seashells, yet no one looks forward to updating their resume. Amiright?  You'll slip though the gates of automated tracking systems if de-seashell your resumé.

Do you suspect ageism is at play in your low response rates? Pay close attention to this...

To most employers, you’re as old as you act.  Old school resumé, means old school candidate. They take a pass.  "Meh" LinkedIn profile, says "out of touch" loud and clear. Showing you're hip to the latest trends, neutralizes ageism. For example ... You don't hear anyone disrespecting Warren Buffet because he's "old" do you?  Presidents in their 70s is the norm, not the exception.  It's not ageism people care about as much as currency. As in, how hip are you to what's current?   When you're current, people focus on your wisdom and experience. Your years won't make them wonder if you rolled down the Old Town road in a horse and carriage.  My go-to not-a-seashell resumé to make your life easier is Novoresume. It's  ➖ Clean ➖ Modern  ➖ Smart And it's designed to be easy for you to update. It will help you be a more powerful editor, too.  I’ve been a touting this since it came out a few years go. You can check it out here.  Next... Your LinkedIn profile matters more than your resume. Why? ➖ You open the door to be discovered organically by employers looking for someone like you ➖ Easier to read and more interesting to view ➖ You have more options to show off your work and it's easier to update.  I haven't whipped out a fresh packet of empirical method and done a study, yet here's what common sense tells you: the HR person, recruiter, or hiring manager looking at your resume is probably female and on the "Can I see your ID?" side of 40. And where do they live? Online.  They're scouting LinkedIn. Get that right and it's like switching from seashells to Charmin when they ask to see your resumé. Hope you have plenty of TP.  Stay healthy, Courtney P.S. Check out the Novoresume templates. They are super sharp. When yours is done,  I'd love to see it!

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