Tips for Working for a Younger Boss
If you picked up a new job for the New Year, you might find yourself working for a younger boss. If you’ve been out of the workforce for a while, relating to a boss who’s younger and likely less experienced than you can be a difficult adjustment. You might even be resentful, feeling like you’re more qualified for the position. Having the right mindset from Day One is extremely important. That’s why we’ve compiled these five tips for coping with a younger boss.
He or she might be younger, but that shouldn’t matter: you should always treat your boss with the utmost respect. The key is recognizing that your boss is entrenched in that position for a reason. Focus on the positive traits your boss brings to the table, as well as ways you can help him or her do their job efficiently and effectively.
Look on the Bright Side
Instead of dwelling on the perceived negatives of having a younger boss, focus on the positives – there are quite a few, believe it not! For one, he or she might have a different perspective to offer that helps you see things through a different light. Secondly, younger bosses often have a unique brand of energy and enthusiasm that makes coming to work immeasurably more exciting.
Let Your Own Skills Shine
While you can learn some things from your younger boss, your younger boss can stand to learn some things from you, too. Experience, maturity and knowledge are all qualities you have going for you as an older worker. Focus on these strengths and your boss will come to grasp the value you add. They will also help foster a respectful and mutually appreciative relationship between you two.
Vocalize Your Skills
If you’re concerned that your best qualities are being underutilized, speak up. Bosses value employees who bring multiple skills to the table, and have the confidence to stand behind these skills in a professional environment. Your boss will be appreciative of your proactive nature and team-first attitude. Make sure to address such issues at the right time and in the appropriate context.
Be a Leader
As one of the older persons at your workplace, your coworkers may naturally lean on you for leadership and advice. Being a mentor provides a wealth of opportunities to distinguish yourself to your boss. Be sure not to come across as condescending or arrogant to your younger colleagues; instead be accessible and enthusiastic while drawing from your experiences to offer practical assistance.