8 Principles for a Senior Friendly Workplace

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I was the director of a task force that worked to educate and brand employers in our area on becoming a “Senior Friendly Workplace.” Focus groups were held and the following principles were developed from those findings. Employers were contacted and human resource professionals were educated on the principles. The business could sign onto an agreement allowing them to be branded a “Senior Friendly Workplace.” They then received a door decal and were able to use the branding in their “help wanted” ads.

These principles and practices go a long way in educating and fighting ageism in the workplace. Watch for the “Best Practices of a Senior Friendly Workplace” in my next blog! Following are the eight principles:

1.  Principle:  Flexibility of Scheduling
We will exercise flexibility in scheduling senior workers and respect their desire to limit their overall number of hours of employment.

2.  Principle:  Physical Accommodations
We will make reasonable accommodations to address the physical limitations faced by our employees, including limitations in stamina or ability brought on by age.

3.  Principle:  Respect
We value the contributions that seniors can make to our organization and pledge to foster an atmosphere of mutual respect in our workplace.

4.  Principle:  Cultural Accommodation
We recognize that every worker brings a different life experience to the job and will strive to create a working atmosphere that respects these differences and enhances the productivity of all workers.

5.  Principle:  Work Assignments
We will make work assignments based on the skills, abilities, and availability of our workers, and the needs of our business, without regard to the ages of the workers assigned.

6.  Principle:  Recruitment
In our recruitment efforts we will strive to convey the message that workers of all ages are welcome in our workplace.

7.  Principle:  Compensation & Promotion
In developing our compensation and benefit programs and in selecting candidates for promotion, we will focus on productivity and the value added by the work performed, without regard to the age of the worker assigned.

8.  Principle:  Training
In offering training to our employees, we will attempt to accommodate the learning styles and starting places of individual learners.

These Principles and Best Practices for a Senior Friendly Workplace were developed by the Senior Employment Committee of the West Central Minnesota Labor Force Development Council, West Central Initiative, 1000 Western Avenue, Fergus Falls MN  56537.

AGEISM: Prejudice or discrimination against a particular age-group and especially the elderly.

VOCATIONAL WELLNESS – Working keeps us engaged and growing. If you’re not working, volunteer to help others, get involved in an avocation.

4 Comments

  1. Great article!

  2. jolyn

    wow. wish we all to time to care for our aging population.
    love the 8 dimensions of wellness listed in your profile.

    • We are all aging, so the work we do today for those older than us will benefit future generations as well. Thanks for reading and taking the time to respond.

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