So far the training seems to be making a bigger difference than former initia

So far the training seems to be making a bigger

This preview shows page 5 - 7 out of 11 pages.

consider their racist and sexist mindsets. So far, the training seems to be making a bigger difference than former initia tives, but the firm has a long way to go. Laszlo Bock, Google’s top HR executive, said, “Suddenly you go from being completely oblivious to going, ‘Oh my god, it’s everywhere.’” Critics are skeptical that Google and other large technology firms will ever count women in their ranks in numbers that reflect the population, though research continues to indicate that men and women are highly similar employees. Once Google has achieved greater diversity than it currently has, perhaps its executives can begin to work on the pay differentials: a recent Harvard study indicated that women computer scientists receive 89 percent of the pay men earn for the same jobs. Questions 2-15. Does this article change your perception of Google as an employer? How? 2-16. Would you agree that although Google helps to modernize the workplace in other companies, its own workforce is old-fashioned? 2-17. Why are older employees often neglected or discriminated against? Case 6 Over the past century, the average age of the workforce has increased as medical science has continued to enhance longevity and vitality. As we discussed in this chapter, many individuals will work past the previously established ages of retirement, and the fastest-growing segment of the workforce is individuals over the age of 55. Unfortunately, older workers face a variety of discriminatory attitudes in the workplace. Researchers scanned more than 100 publications on age discrimination to determine what types of age stereotypes were most prevalent across studies. They found that stereotypes inferred that older workers are lower performers. Research, on the other hand, indicates they are not, and organizations are realizing the benefits of this needed employee group. Dale Sweere, HR director for engineering firm Stanley Consultants, is one of the growing number of management professionals actively recruiting the older workforce. Sweere says older workers “typically hit the ground running much quicker and they fit into the organization well.” They bring to the job a higher skill level earned through years of experience, remember an industry’s history, and know the aging customer base.
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Tell that to the older worker who is unemployed. Older workers have long been sought by government contractors, financial firms, and consultants, according to Cornelia Gamlem, president of consulting firm GEMS Group Ltd., and she actively recruits them. However, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that the average job search for an unemployed worker over age 55 is 56 weeks, versus 38 weeks for the rest of the unemployed population. Enter the encore career, a.k.a. unretirement. Increasingly, older workers who aren’t finding fulfilling positions are seeking to opt out of traditional roles. After long careers in the workforce, an increasing number are embracing flexible, work-from-home options such as customer service positions. For instance, Olga Howard, 71, signed on as an independent contractor for 25–30 hours per week with Arise Virtual Solutions, handling questions for a financial software company after her long-term career ended. Others are starting up new businesses. Chris Farrell, author of
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