Is it Age Discrimination if You’re Asked to ‘Think Younger?’

Age discrimination. Ugh. That is, two very ugly words.

We read this piece in the New York Post and simply cringed. After all, a reader wrote in to inquire if it was age discrimination when his or her boss asked the reader to “think younger.”

The fact that the 50 year-old marketing director pondered the question meant there was an inkling that discrimination’s present.

That said, Gregory Giangrande, human resources executive in the media, doesn’t think the director should speed dial an attorney just yet.

He sets it straight in the piece:

“What your boss said may have more to do with the audience you are trying to reach than it has to do with your age. I’m not naive and know that age discrimination still occurs in many areas. But the reality is that most older workers who lose their jobs do so not due to their age, but due to expense.”

So, it sounds like he has a point. As business conditions evolve, creative marketing campaigns toward a specific audience may indeed warrant the notion of thinking younger.

He adds, “The best chance of long-term employment is to demonstrate that your thinking and skills are ‘current’ and that you add more value to the organization than you cost. And that applies to workers of all ages.”

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