You are fifty something and you are advised that your services are no longer required by an almost faceless being. Your gut is in a knot and you can hardly breathe…the first thought is financial…your second thought is… what the hell do I do know?
Everyone knows how difficult it is to get another job. You sit trapped in the chair as you listen through a fog of redundancy rhetoric. Phrases like: “This is an opportunity for a new start” “You have two days of outplacement to help you write your CV”. It feels like the words roll off a faceless cold mechanical tongue, reading cold mechanical scripts in a sculptured body devoid of compassion. Perhaps it feels like that because in that moment, everyone is dealing with the discomfort, by dissociating from each other.
An anecdotal story.
There were very few women in corporate Australia, in senior positions in the 1990’s. I know because I was one of that minority. At the time I became intrigued about why there were so few women in business. Over time almost through osmosis, I decided to do my own anecdotal research as to why. I must stress I am aware that the data and my conclusions have no academic validity. The insights I gained however helped me navigate my career, helped me avoid some unspoken career traps and helped guide other women with their careers.
I have spoken to many men over many years and I asked one simple question. What did men fear most about women in business? Obviously the question wasn’t delivered cold. It was asked once rapport was built with my male colleagues and conversations were mostly had in informal settings. Most men took the question very seriously, though some were confronted at first, they genuinely explored the question within themselves.
On Wednesday Jenny Brice was interviewed regarding her new article on Ageism. ABC News’ Jon Coghill interviewed Jenny about her article and gained her perspective on the discrimination people face on account of their age, without knowing the skills and possible contributions those people could make.
A Sunshine Coast business coach is combating ageism in the Australian workplace and wants the corporate world to do the same.
Jenny Brice, a former high-flying human resources (HR) professional, said corporate Australia needs to have a conversation about how older workers can be an asset.
“The skills we have learned going through the tough times [of recession in the 1990s], and understanding what they are, can be unbelievable knowledge for corporations,” Ms Brice said.
Read the news report here: http://www.abc.net.au/news/2016-02-03/age-prejudice-epidemic-in-corporate-australia-target-of-battle/7136190