6 Generational Stereotypes to Bust on Your Job Hunt

workplace agismMillennials don't take well to even the slightest bit of criticism at work. And we all know that Gen X'ers don't play well with team members. As for boomers, they're totally out of touch and couldn't care less about learning new things on the job. After all, they're just looking to retire soon.

We've all heard these age-based workplace stereotypes at some point, but what can you do to avoid being unfairly pigeonholed yourself? We spoke to three career pros for advice on how to dodge generational typecasting while on the job hunt.

View Slide Show

  • Boomer

    As a boomer I am so offended at comments like these that make us seem so un-tech savvy. People my age have worked with up and coming technology since we began our careers. In my 20′s I learned to use one of the very first word processors out on the market, then went on to learn Word Star. When Word Perfect came around, you had to know HTML codes to ensure the proper formatting of your documents. I learned to create spreadsheets in DOS and was a first user of Windows. I am more knowledgeable in Office software than most people half my age. In this day and age you cannot function in the work environment without being in touch with the most current technology. With children, you must be tied into social media on several levels to stay current with them. Do you think we only use cell phones to make calls and not to bother updating our Pinterest/Facebook/Twitter/Instagram statuses or text or use GPS to find a location? So these types of comments to Boomers are as insulting as insinuating that we have lived in isolated hovels in the dark ages without any connection to modern conveniences – please understand that we are not as out of touch with state of the art technologies as you would like to imagine.

    • Charlotte L.

      Agreed. But the Boomer stereotype was probably the least offensive. As you’ve pointed out, this Boomer stereotype is hardly rooted in reality at all. Similarly, I’m trying to figure out how exactly it’s such a foregone conclusion that every Milennial is lazy and entitled.

      These stereotypes are pretty extreme and offensive all around the board. Although the article claims to “help” us to “fight” them, I think giving the stereotypes any lip service at all is a step in the wrong direction.

    • Christian

      Agreed. I don’t recognise any of these generational stereotypes from my workplace.

  • Thomas Wenndt

    The problem, of course, is the whole business of “stereotyping” in the first place. It is an act of intellectual laziness that allows people to skip over having to get to know who people really are. By making generalities, especially of a generation not your own, you can excuse whatever you are trying to do or not do that brings these attitudes about.

  • stp New Mexico

    Understanding generational differences can be helpful but, unfortunately it often ends there. We should instead use generational differences to gain insight then focus on what we have in common. It is amazing. As a boomer, I am often shocked at what my generation thinks of X and Y. Let’s remember who stood up and volunteered for military service after 9/11. I think history will be very kind to generation X and Y, just like the greatest generation. Unfortunately, I won’t be here to see it.

  • http://www.StPaulrealEstateBlog.com Teresa Boardman

    Computers have been around for decades. I bought one long ago and taught my millennial age children how to use it so they could grow up with the technology. I got my first cell phone in the early 1990′s, and it was me who introduced the technology to my millennial age children. as or the social media sites you mention I use each but I don’t think I would have to have a facebook account to hold an executive level job at fortune 500 company.