Sunday, 24 August 2008
Is Ageism the new Racism? A Rant
Being a 25 year old blonde female in a professional role has its advantages. However, it also comes with many disadvantages. As much as racism is still prevalent in our society, a larger prejudice is starting to dominate the workforce: Ageism. If I had to choose between a young new doctor fresh out of medical school, or an older experienced doctor, three years from retirement, I would choose option one. Why? Because being fresh out of school means you are sharper, more eager and more attentive. Granted, the older physician does have years of experience to depend on. However, in our society experience is not necessarily the key to success. Not many of my friends have been successful in finding a worthwhile occupation, even though they are 3 years out of university. No…. they are not lazy or naïve. Rather, they are ambitious, efficient and very creative. Yet they spend hours in front of a computer, pretending to do work as they surf the internet. They are punished for doing work a lot quicker than their experienced counterparts. They also have to constantly prove themselves to their bosses or clients. It took me six months of regular visits with my clients in order for them to realize that yes, I do have half a brain and I will be just as competent, if not more so, than my 50 year old colleague. Welcome to 2008, university graduates are used to managing their time well, partying just as hard as they work and working only when they have to. We are called the lazy generation. Ok, fine..call us lazy. I have many friends that are bored in their job..working endless hours, completing meaningless tasks. They long for a job with real responsibility, real ideas and real decisions. Can the sense of entitlement and jadedness kick in already?