Wednesday, July 01, 2009

Study: Younger Workers Hurt More by Recession; Older Workers Show Resilience

According to a study published by Boston College's Sloan Center on Aging & Work, younger workers are bearing the brunt of the current economic crisis, while older employees show greater resiliency in a recession-battered workplace where employers seek to do more with less. Specifically, in "The difference a downturn can make: Assessing the Early Effects of the Economic Crisis on the Employment Experiences of Workers", while researchers found employees of all ages reporting a drop in employee engagement (a measure of how invested and enthusiastic employees are in their work),
Workers among "Generation Y" – ages 26 and younger – report the greatest decrease in engagement. Those slightly older workers in "Generation X" – ages 27 to 42 – reported less of a decrease, while Baby Boomers and older "Traditionalists" – ages 43 or older – reported that their levels of engagement hardly changed at all.
Marcie Pitt-Catsouphes, director of the Center, suggests that "[s]ome older workers have been through recessions before and that gives them experiential resilience." Furthermore, she comments that "[s]avvy employers will leverage older workers' experience to help younger workers manage through turbulence," and "hat sense of resilience can help organizations remain energized and passionate."

Source: Sloan Center on Aging & Work Stages (June 2009)

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