Workplace Articles

Ageism in the workplace is growing. Unfortunately because our society focuses strongly on innovative growth of organizations, many companies have amped up these ageist hiring and firing practices to ensure that they have a “young” workforce that will be perceived “positively” by the public.

This aged-based stereotyping is detrimental not only to our current workforce, and the future workforce, but also to the organizations participating. These companies are losing out on ideas from entire generations of adults. They are no longer all-encompassing, and have siloed and stifled their growth.

There is also a subset of individuals experiencing reverse ageism at work. These younger employees can find themselves held back not because their ideas aren’t “good,” or because they “aren’t ready to be managers,” but rather simply because they are “too young” to be deemed able to create stellar work or manage a team.

While the world is starting to wake up to ageism within the workplace, there is a lot of work ahead of us. Knowledge is the first step, so the ageism in the workplace conversations being had are a great step in the right direction, and hopefully as time progresses these conversations ignite actions.

We need actions from employees, actions from HR professionals, actions from business owners. Everyone needs to unite in order to create a unified understanding of how ageism negatively impacts our worldwide workforce, and ways that we can remove it from our vocabulary and our experiences.

For those experiencing ageism in the workplace it can feel very singular if no one else within the company is speaking up about it. Often, it can help for employees suffering from age-based stereotyping to reach out to networks that talk about ageism to develop a dialogue with others also experiencing negativity at work based on their age. However, reaching out for help can be hard, so we are hopeful that HR teams will make a larger effort to ensure that their employees have the right tools and information moving forward to ensure that they are able to find outlets for help if they ever need it.