Engaging companies in a dialog around age and aging in the workplace and the concept of age equity feels a bit like moving mountains. But I can face this challenge because I know I’m not doing it alone.
For me, I love feeling challenged and believing I can deliver. But while I’m good at setting myself up for a challenge, I sometimes need to remind myself I’ve got what it takes to achieve the goal.
There is a growing community of people across the age spectrum stepping up to the plate to help create awareness. That means calling out the myriad ways that age bias and discrimination show up in the workplace. When I begin to feel overwhelmed, I remember everyone else who believes (like I do) that age equity must become a workplace priority.
How AEA Is Creating Dialog
This year is all about raising the bar for age equity awareness. AEA is off to a strong start with our YouTube campaign. Creating 100 videos about the importance of age inclusion in 100 days has been incredibly rewarding. With the help of many contributors, we now have 100 tools to help organizations jump-start age equity conversations.
The more awareness we create, the more opportunities we have to share our message through podcasts, panel discussions, and speaking engagements. We continue to offer consultation and training to age-friendly community members. Most recently, we’ve begun working with organizations’ age-related employee resource groups. Our beta program EveryGenTM provides knowledge sharing with age-related ERGs covering formation, mission, vision, strategy, and tactics. It’s all about partnering to help influence and shape an age-equitable, age-friendly workplace.
Awareness is just the beginning. Getting companies to commit to action is where the rubber meets the road.
What Influences Age Equity
Laurinda Reynolds, Professor and Department Chair of Gerontology at American River College and AEA board member, explains all workplace equity initiatives require deliberate shaping of the culture. Without proactive effort, workplace culture evolves spontaneously. And, embedded in that evolution are bias, myths, stereotypes, and assumptions that prevail, not only in the workplace but in culture in general.
It takes deliberate intention to carefully develop and cultivate a workplace with an environment that is equitable to all. That falls squarely on the shoulders of leaders. After all, it’s leaders who must model diversity, equity, and inclusion (including age!) and hold others accountable for embracing those same behaviors.
In a survey of 6,000 employers, 83% of business leaders say multigenerational workforces are critical to growth and long-term success. Inclusive companies value age equity. And just like other protected workplace categories, age equity requires employee education, training, leadership consultation, and systems checks.
That’s what AEA proudly delivers.
Set up a free 30-minute consultation to learn more.