Respecting Older Employees

Respect Your Elders

Recently I was in a restaurant and listened to some bickering between waitresses.

One of them has worked in the restaurant industry and this particular restaurant for many years. The other waitress is in the first year of her first job. The younger employee refused to take suggestions or advice from the older employee. Although they did not handle this situation correctly in front of customers, it did remind me of an important principle.

Word To the Wise

Young WorkerHere is a special word of encouragement to younger employees in an organization or to those who are just entering the workforce. I see it all the time in today’s work environment.

If you are the newest person in the organization, you should be willing to listen to whoever has more experience than you have, even if they are equal to you or outrank you in superiority.

For that matter, even if they are report to you consider listening to their advice. This does not make it right for an older worker to treat the younger worker with disrespect, but my momma always said, “Two wrongs don’t make a right!”

You should do this for several reasons:

  • It will build their trust in you.
  • It will honor their years of service.
  • It will make the work environment more congenial.
  • It will be a great example for others in and outside the organization.
  • It is the right thing to do.

Have you seen this occur in your organization? Have you been the older or the younger employee? Do you agree?

Ron Edmondson is Co-Pastor at Grace Community Church
He specializes in Communication, Strategy, Org Behavior, Mgmt and Marketing
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2 responses to “Respecting Older Employees

  1. Pingback: Tweets that mention Respecting Older Employees « Linked 2 Leadership --·

  2. Good article, Ron. I offer one more point for the younger worker, manager, or leader as to why they should be respectful to older employees. “You will someday be an older employee.”

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