Help me work more effectively with old people
September 14, 2011 2:42 PM Subscribe
How can I work more effectively, in an office environment, with people over 75?
posted by skbw to Work & Money (33 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
I think it's precisely because I enjoy the company, socially, of older people, and I have a rather conservative demeanor, that I am frequently getting hired by older bosses. Of my 4 adult jobs, 3 have been supervised by people well over 75. (It may also be that there's a surplus of genuinely old people, 75-85, in nonprofit management, but that's another post.) But it's not always easy to work for someone 81 years old. How can I do better at it? Can anyone speak from experience?
I've repeated to myself that it is ALSO not okay to dislike working, say, for a person of a particular race. I don't want to be the kind of ageist who says, "oooh, I'm not even going on that interview, I can't work for another old lady, no, no, no."
I've also repeated to myself that old people (I don't mean 60) want to contribute to society, too, as is their RIGHT, and that I'll want to when I'm their age.
Here I'm not trying to be cute--it goes way beyond "doing things the old-fashioned way." Without resorting to clichés, I don't mind, say, a typewriter. Also, just for the record, my partner is almost 30 years older than me, and I'm 34, so when I say "old," I don't mean mid-career.
Any ideas to help me adjust my attitude? Thank you.