More age groups are working together now than ever before. As five generations occupy the American workplace, differences in values, work ethic and world views can lead to incredible innovation. However, these differences can also create hostility. In some cases, it can also result in age discrimination, especially for older workers.
Why this is often an issue
In a competitive business climate, companies are always looking for ways to stay relevant and profitable. Because of this, they may tend to favor younger workers because some believe they have a fresher perspective and lower salary expectations. And while this kind of favoritism is unlawful, it can still happen.
How do I know if I’m a victim of workplace ageism?
It’s not always easy to tell, as every place different. But if you’ve experienced any of the following, you may be a victim:
- Unequal opportunities: Most employees are interested in tackling new projects and getting extra training. But if your manager seems to be giving most of these opportunities to younger workers, despite your clear and obvious interest, this may be a sign of mistreatment.
- Social segregation: Some managers like to hang out with their team members after work during happy hour. While it’s an excellent bonding opportunity, these events can also be a gateway to moving up in the company. If the boss only seems to be inviting the younger workers out, this could be a red flag.
- Creative excuses: If an employer is aware of their discriminatory practices, some may try to come up with unfounded reasons for their decisions. For instance, if your boss demotes you for poor performance, despite your stellar reviews, it could be a sign of age discrimination.
Workers of any age don’t deserve to face mistreatment
Workers of all ages can bring something unique to the table. If your company can’t see that, you deserve to take your skills and talents elsewhere. If you think these practices warrant legal action, you may want to contact a knowledgeable employment law attorney.