Younger workers are finding it difficult to find work because they are inexperienced, while older workers suspect they are being overlooked because of their ages. Meanwhile, Canadian companies are finding it difficult to hire the right people for the job. They hesitate to hire new graduates for many reasons: they are inexperienced, they will take too much time and effort to train, they may not stay more than two or three years, they are easily discouraged if they don’t see any opportunities to advance… At the other end, they have similar concerns about hiring older workers: they may only be putting in time until retirement, their skills may be out of date, they may quit if a more suitable position is offered…
The clock is ticking: boomers are going to retire eventually, and companies will need to have skilled people ready to take their places. Yet, how many companies have effective succession plans in place?
Perhaps it’s time to look at the benefits of pairing older workers with a new graduates in a job sharing initiative. It could be a win:win:win situation. Young people would have an opportunity to gain valuable work experience and to work with a seasoned mentor. Older people would have the benefit of hearing fresh new ideas, and to work with a tech-savvy mentor. The company would have two motivated employees for the price of one.
Obviously, there would be challenges, but none that could not be overcome by a forward thinking company.
Oh, and by the way: we older workers still have a lot to offer, and if we think back to when we were entering the workforce, we were no different from the young people today. It’s time to look at the positive attributes of the workforce, no matter their age and experience.
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