Look around your workplace and chances are you'll see more photos of grandchildren on desks and at workstations than ever before. All those late middle-aged and older workers need training and motivation to keep performing at their best just as much as the younger ones. So don’t ignore them, don’t misjudge them, and, above all, don’t sideline them. You could be wasting some of your best workers.
What does an aging workforce have to offer your organization? The answer is lots! For example, middle-aged and older workers:• Are generally experienced and knowledgeable about the job and the organization. • Tend to have a strong work ethic and take pride in their work.• Often have superior judgment, especially when it comes to safety.• Tend to make fewer mistakes than their younger co-workers.
• Are among the most loyal to the organization.• Are usually committed to quality and productivity standards.• Often are more reliable and have better attendance records than younger workers.• Tend to have better workplace safety records than younger workers. Tips for training an aging workforce. Here are some suggestions to help ensure successful training outcomes when you’re dealing with an aging workforce:Don’t buy into myths about older workers (the “you can’t teach an old dog new tricks” mentality), and don’t make assumptions about their goals and aspirations.
Tips for motivating an aging workforce. Motivation and training go hand-in-hand. To keep an aging workforce motivated as well as well trained:
• According to the National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), by 2010 middle-aged and older workers will outnumber younger ones. • By that year, the number of employees aged 59 to 64 is expected to be 21.2 million, compared with about 14 million in 2000. • And the number of workers 65 and older should reach about 5.4 million, up more than a million from 2000 figures.• The Age Discrimination in Employment Act prohibits discrimination against employees 40 years of age and older in the terms, conditions, and privileges of employment.
Copyright © 2013 BLR Business & Legal Reports Reproduction in whole or in part without permission is prohibited.