Thursday, May 21, 2009

Like I Didn't Know This Already

If you're in your 20s, you can probably rattle off a list of friends who were recently let go from their jobs. Or you're one of those people yourself. And it's not because of anything you did; it's just the fact that you are in your 20s and, to upper level management, expendable.

"Employees in their 20s and 30s are finding themselves more at risk of a layoff, according to labor lawyers, as employers look to avoid age-discrimination lawsuits by adopting a 'last one in, first one out' policy and turn to tenure as a means of conducting layoffs. In some cases, young, childless professionals say they feel they're being targeted in layoffs, while employees who have families to support are given special consideration."


I can understand why companies work this way. If you have to fire someone, why not have it be the kid who makes copies instead of the person who has been a loyal worker for 30 years? It sucks to fire anyone, so why not have it be the person you know the least?

But that doesn't make anyone who gets laid off feel a lot better. Especially when no one is hiring.

It's just bad timing. You can be an awesome worker and way less annoying than some of your older coworkers, but you'll be the first to go because your job is probably not all that important to the company, because you don't have a family to take care of, and because you were the most recently hired. How is that our fault? And how is an entire generation of workers supposed to develop their careers if they can't keep their jobs, much less move forward in a company? I feel like this is going to have major repercussions for twentysomethings as we get older.