What does age have to do with job?

Last week I had a slight emotional breakdown. Now, believe me, I’m not a teary woman but this had gone too far. I am talking about the attitude towards me at my workplace.

Last week I had a slight emotional breakdown. Now, believe me, I’m not a teary woman but this had gone too far. I am talking about the attitude towards me at my workplace.

I recently joined a new company, after discussions of more work and better pay. My biggest reason for leaving my former place of work was that this job would give me the opportunity to work with one of the top business people in the country and there was simply so much to learn from it.

At first, I loved my office - well I still do - and I love the immediate people I work with, but I cannot say the same for everybody else. As it is an old company, it has people who have been there for a long time. The senior management are all older and married people, and tend to isolate those they are unfamiliar with. I, for one, do not have a problem proving myself. The frustration comes when age and background are what people base their trust on!

There was some reshuffling and a colleague moved on to greener pastures. She was there for about six years and got along with everyone in the company because of her outgoing personality and ability to chitchat with anyone. I’m a nice person and very outgoing, but I’ve never really fancied putting myself out there so I guess this makes me seem distant.

That is not the real issue. Before my colleague left, everyone who came to our office asked the same question “will she handle it?” Yes, they talked about me as if I was not even there! I’m in my twenties, I’m not dumb. They literally assumed I would burn the company to the ground. Maybe they thought I would invite all my young friends and throw parties…I really have no idea what made them think I was incapable of handling my post!

Well maybe the only reason I would not be able to do my job effectively is that my colleagues have treated me like an intern from day one. They don’t trust me with important documents or messages and this drives me crazy!

So maybe I’m younger than these people are, but it is unfair to assume that my age makes me incompetent. I understand I am the ‘new girl’ but I’m here to do my job and not talk about life or the era I was born in for that matter. If I can do my assignments well, why should it matter how old I am?

I can do my job regardless of whether I was born after the Cold War or grew up listening to the Backstreet Boys and not Frank Sinatra.

 

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