“The Treasure Trove of the Aging Workforce” is simply stating how individuals in today’s workforce are working past the previous established retirement age of 70. Most of the older individuals are in a fast-growing segment of older workers, averaging over the age of 55. Treasure Trove of the Aging Workforce explains how these individuals are discriminated against because of their age, low performance rate and the inability to keep up with today’s technology. Based on the case study of “The Treasure Trove of the Aging Workforce” based on the following questions: What changes in employment relationships are likely to occur as the population ages?
Do you think increasing age diversity will create new challenges for managers? What types of challenges do you expect will be most profound? What types of policies might lead to charges of age discrimination, and how can they be changed to eliminate these problems? Discuss some other challenges organizations often encounter while trying to build a diverse workforce. Describe some of the actions an organization should take to overcome diversity challenges, explaining why those actions would be helpful. Provide examples to support your conclusions. What are some of the important benefits of having a diverse workforce?
Medical science, over the past few years, has allowed for longevity of human life. The age of today’s workforce has segment has averaged over the age of 55. As the population ages, there are new challenges that will arise between the employer and employee. “Employers express mixed feelings about the older worker. They see a number of positive qualities older workers bring to their jobs, such as experience, judgment, a strong work ethic, and commitment to quality. But older workers are also perceived as lacking flexibility and resisting new technology” (Robbins & Judge, p. 46, 2015). Later I will discuss the challenges that mangers might face with added age diversity, and some of the policies that could be put into place—which will warrant an effective way of working with age diversity. Subheadings:
Definition of Biographical Diversity
There are two major forms of workforce diversity—demographical and biographical; each with smaller entities under them. “Biographical characteristics, personal characteristics, such as age, gender, race, disability, and length of service are some of the most obvious ways employees differ” (Robbins & Judge, p. 45, 2015). Changes in Employment Relationships Due to Age Increase
Due to the advances of medical research, people are living longer. This has allowed for individuals to extend their retirement and work past the 70. With this brings older workers back into the workforce and the possibility of discrimination of the company or management team against older workers. As the population of workforce workers are employment relationship, between employee and employer must evolve. Jobs may need to be redesigned to adhere to the fact that most individuals are of an older age. Supervisors and managers may need training in order to work effectively and efficiently with older workers. Programs of some sort may be incorporated to teach of age discrimination in the workplace—that will enlighten individuals of the benefits of having those experienced and seasonal individuals. Age Diversity Creates New Challenges for Management
An aging population/workforce will most definitely require changes in the organization. Managers will have to adapt new working hours and leadership styles. Policies That Lead to Age Discrimination Charges
Managers should think hard about the policies they would like to change in order to not get charged with age discrimination—they should proactively put policies in place that will address the issues of age discrimination in the workplace. Some of the policies that could be put into action are the need for more flexibility on working hours; the notion of increased health care visits—changes in sick leave or absenteeism policies. Challenges of Diversity in the Workforce
Cross-cultural challenges of diversity in the workforce are always a deal breaker for individuals of different ethnic and cultural backgrounds. Different cultural and language understanding need to be clearly understood to have a successful company. Communication skills should be adapted in order to stay efficient and clearly understood when speaking to people of with different cultural and language barriers. Those who have the mentality of “we’ve always done it this way” need to be weaved out—or should be made to take a class or training on diversity of the workplace. To teach these individuals on the strengths and successes that diversity will bring to a company. Benefits of a Diverse Workforce
An organizations overall success and competiveness over other companies depends on how well the company has adapted diversity. A company that has adapted diversity would be able to provide their services on a more global range—other cultural and language understanding. To add, most companies who value/incorporate diversity in the workplace create room for employee execution—these employees will perform at their best; while also having an increase in employee morale. Conclusion:
Having companies employ different policies to aid in the growing population of the aging worker will help them address future challenges of discrimination. “Many believe productivity declines with age… The evidence, however, contradicts those assumptions. Reviews of the research find that age and job task performance are unrelated and that older workers are more likely to engage in citizenship behavior” (Robbins & Judge, p. 46, 2015). Changing the way employers communicate, leadership styles and working hours; will most certainly account for a decrease in age discrimination in the workplace.
Robbins, S., & Timothy, J. (2015). Chapter 2: Diversity in Organizations. In
Organizational Behavior (16th ed.). Upper Saddle River, N.J.: Pearson.