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Description: The notion of the “older worker” is frequently used in the organizational literature, in organizational practice, and in society, but so far no research has investigated why people consider someone to be an older worker at a certain age. In the qualitative part of this study, we examined potential reasons for considering workers to be “older” at a certain age. In the quantitative part of this study, we investigated demographic characteristics (i.e., age, sex, education), job characteristics (i.e., job level, typical age in a job), and beliefs (i.e., perceived remaining time at work, motivation to continue working after retirement, positive and negative age stereotypes) as predictors of people’ conceptions of “older worker age.” Data were provided by 269 employees from various jobs and organizations. The mean age at which participants’ considered someone to be an “older worker” was approximately 55 years (SD = 8.9). The most frequently stated reasons for considering workers to be “older” at a certain age were retirement age and age-related decline. Results of a regression analysis showed that participants’ age, sex, and perceived remaining time predicted “older worker age.” These findings provide first insights into the psychological construction of the “older worker.”


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