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Mature Workers An Undervalued Resource

Look at any business magazine or journal. You will see that the vast majority of "movers and shakers" featured are under age 50. Increasingly they are in their 30s and 40s. Why? Are those the real movers and shakers in the world of business? The fact is that corporations and large businesses, for the most part, value employees under 40 the most. By the time employees are in their 40s they are either executives or on they are not. Those who are not executives or at least on the executive track are viewed as being on the "pre-retirement track".

Most companies will do all they can to displace those employees with younger (and almost always cheaper) employees. Layoffs, early retirements and reorganizations confirm this fact time and again. So why should companies value mature workers?.Stability.Mature workers are often more stable in terms of their life style than their younger counterparts.

Dating, job hopping, babies and post-college drinking binges are less likely to consume them during and after working hours. Workers age 50 and over view work as work and not source for dates or other social activities. Additionally, by age 50 most workers are established in their communities and are less likely to leave for greener pastures. While this is often seen as a negative, it should be viewed as a positive.

Teamwork.The vast majority of workers age 50 and over have extensive experience working as part of a team at work. Most have worked as part of many formal and informal teams. The more experience a worker has being part of teams, the more effective they are in the ever-changing environment where there are new formal and informal teams established daily. Mature workers are less likely to want to "show boat" but rather understand the value of everyone's contributions to the team effort.Flexibility.

Since the early 1970s, the workplace has undergone huge social and technological changes. The generations age 50 and older have lived through all those changes. That has required and instilled in them a high degree of flexibility. Reorganizations, consolidation, flattening of organizations, computers, new technologies, recessions, go-go years and globalization have all forced great changes in the workplace and no generation since the Industrial Revolution has experienced that change more than the mature workers of today.

Working through all those changes has enabled them to not only accept change but to embrace it.Perspective.The more mature workers are, the more likely they are to have worked directly or indirectly in functions beyond their current primary one. Most younger workers in sales know sales. Or in accounting know accounting.

Or in engineering know engineering. Mature works age 50 and over have perspectives beyond their current functions. Mature workers in sales may have engineering experience.

Mature workers in accounting may have marketing experience. Or mature workers in engineering may have sales experience. The more functional and careers experiences employers have, no matter how "dated" they may seem, make them more valuable employees today.Balance.Businesses today often hyper-focus on near term results. Employees over age 50 have experience 25+ years of business.

That is over 100 quarters. Or 300 months. And more than 1300 weeks.

There is a tendency on the part of younger workers to view every day, week and month as a crisis of results. There is nothing wrong with urgency. But urgency has to be balanced with the longer term.

Businesses must balance short and longer term results. The ability of mature workers to see beyond the near term is one of the great strengths of their longevity in the workplace.Expense.Finally, the media often talks about the expense of mature workers. Paid more due to their seniority and longevity.

More vacations (sometimes). More medical expenses (sometimes). This is a fallacy. The turnover of younger workers, jumping from job to job for better offers and greener pastures costs companies much more overall than do mature workers. Also most mature workers put in as many, if not more, hours as their younger counterparts. When viewed on a total cost perspective, high turnover ? high absence younger workers cost companies more overall than mature employees.

Business is about results. When all things are considered, companies are operating from emotion and conformity in their treatment of workers age 50 and over. The benefits that mature employees bring to the workplace including stability, teamwork, flexibility; perspective, balance and lower overall expense make mature workers a competitive advantage for any company or organization.

It is amazing how few companies and organizations have taken steps to leverage that advantage to-date.

.George F. Franks, III is the founder and President of Franks Consulting Group - a Bethesda, Maryland management consulting, leadership coaching and speaking practice.Franks Consulting Group is on the web at: http://franksconsultinggroup.com.

George can be contacted at: gfranks@franksconsultinggroup.com.Article Source: http://EzineArticles.

com/?expert=George_F_Franks_III.

.

By: George F Franks III



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