Bridging the Gap
It was my first day at my second job after college. On the way to work, I stopped to get gas only to get my high heel stuck on the gas pump hose, which promptly threw me onto the ground face first. Gas Pump 1, Alicia 0. Blood and bruising ensued.
I strolled…or better yet limped…into my new job with blood being my newest accessory. Not only was the blood fresh, I was fresh…meat. I looked around at all of my new coworkers and realized I was the youngest by at least 25 years. At that point, I knew blood and bruises may not be my biggest issue – the age difference could be.
So how do you bridge the gap between a 24 year old and a 50 year old? How do you prove that just because your generation has a bad rap of being entitled, you’re willing to start at the bottom and bust your rear? Solution: you show them. You give and, with time, gain respect. You acknowledge that culturally and age-wise, you are different, but you take the opportunity to learn from each other. Even if I could type quicker than my boss, she had been in the workforce for 30 years. She knew things they couldn’t teach me in school.
In every job, you will be given the opportunity to work with people who are different than you. Learn from them and you may be surprised at the things you can teach them as well.
And lucky for you, the first thing I will be happy to teach you is how to not trip over the gas pump while wearing high heels…
Image from Stefano Costanzo at http://www.fotopedia.com/items/f99mkad2ks77v-9PLVJIHmTKg