The Challenge Working With Young People

The Challenge Working With Young People

A close relative recently narrated her encounter with a young girl that needed her contact and connection for a job she’s targeting. She said that this young girl contacted her through WhatsApp and asked for her assistance. However, all through their discussion, the young girl composed her messages using short forms, smiley, numbers and what have you. According to this relative of mine, it takes her long stressful minutes to decode every chat the girl sends. In fact, she contacted me because she wanted to tell me that we, the English lecturers, are not doing our jobs well. Anyway, let’s just say that she decided she wasn’t going to bother herself discussing with the girl because the young girl refused to understand that her method of communication was improper.

Of course many people will not understand why this person decided to cut off someone that needed her help. Some may say that all that my relative needed to do was put all the characters in the message together to get the meaning. Those that reacted the way I did will suggest that she should have corrected the young girl and, maybe, taught her the right thing to do. Well, we have individual differences and many people expect that job seekers should portray a certain level of maturity. Anyway, my relative believed that the young girl isn’t yet ready to work because she should have noticed that responses she received for her messages were in full form and that the sentences were all grammatically correct. Besides, it is wrong to address your superior, who is not too close to you, with slang and short hands or whatever it is.

Nobody is debating the exuberance of the youth. And I don’t think anyone wants to take it away from them. But when it comes to the corporate world, no one cares about youthful mistakes and trends; it is expected that employees exhibit maturity irrespective of their age. Unfortunately, most young people don’t know this, and, hence, make mistakes that could cost them a lot.

If you really want to get a hold of how our youths behave and think, you may need to study them through social platforms like Facebook and Twitter. In some cases these young men and women are jovial and easygoing, in other cases, they are grumpy and aggressive. Sometimes they act decisively and at other times, they act irrationally. All in all, you can actually tell when you meet them from their posts and comments.

Note that not all youths are like this. Some of them started early to find their paths and make important decisions about their lives. Those that belong to this category are quick to learn and they always stand out among their peers, though they may be seen as odd by their counterparts. But then, they are the youths that made their landmarks on time and collect the glory that comes with that.

Nevertheless, there are several reasons why people find it difficult working with youths. Among others, youths are known to exhibit the following negative characters:

  • Aggression

For some reasons yet unknown, youths have taken it upon themselves to be aggressive. Most of them believe that the only way to get the attention of their elders and superiors is through violence. This character alone keeps a lot of people away from employing young people. And those that employ them keep them at arm’s length because they know how volatile they, the youths, can be.

  • Resistance to Correction

It will be improper to say that youths are incorrigible because that will be a mild way of putting it. When I say that youths resist correction, I mean that they fight corrections. There is a difference between someone finding it difficult to change a habit and someone deciding not to change his habit. For instance, when you tell a young lady that dressed wrongly to a job interview that what she wore is improper, you might be surprised to find your face on Twitter within the next hour and that you will be tagged negatively. And that will attract other youths to “drag” you for trying to correct someone who insisted on maintaining the status quo, even if it is wrong.

  • Desire for Quick Money

A friend of mine acted as the surety of a young man (the son of his neighbour) so he could get a sales job in the company he worked with. He regretted his action because the young man stole from the office and was dismissed. Though the office did not ask my friend to pay for the stolen goods because he had good records, he, however, lost his chance of helping others get jobs in that office. Of course it is not all youths that are like this, but the bad eggs in their midst have tainted the rest. Many youths no longer want to work their way up; they want to get in a day what they would earn in years. This has led many of them into crimes and troubles, but they still wouldn’t learn.

This article is not asking the youths to stop being themselves; it is only concerned that the youths should make all the necessary adjustments that will make them endearing to others. They need to understand that people can only entrust them with responsibilities when they give the impression that they are capable of handling them well. This is just to say that our youths need to start thinking like “adults” in all their endeavours, especially in wealth creation.


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