A culture of work ethic and optimism

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Any smart employer or start up would be smart to consider an Inbetweener (1960-65) for hire.  Just take a look at what The New York Times said dispelling the myth that older workers are less productive and generally are weighing down the economy.

I agree with their observation.  Why?  Simply because I’m an older worker and I was hatched when there was a lot going on.  In fact, the first cold war, economic downturn not experienced since the 1920s depression.  There is a strong likelihood that my parents were children of the Great Depression, and raised me to be able to cope with such an event.

Think about it, the next recession to hit occurred just as I was graduating from high school, completed college, ready to get started with optimism and a strong work ethic bestowed by my parents.

Employers are missing the key element that brings the younguns the right example and proper expectations to reality.  We were born to be responsible, accountable and soldiers of work.

 

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This same group that is debated also worked through the optimism that emerged in the late 1980s.  Some of the greatest discoveries and technological wonders impacted the world just as we were getting started.  There were no fancy training courses or charts to reference, we simply had to have a “can do” attitude to survive.  If we survived the prolific foreclosures of that era, unscathed, it was likely because we capitalized on others’ misfortune and scraped our pennies together to buy our first house.  Our aging parents were perplexed as to why were were putting home ownership before having children.

Not really surprising, looking back.  Almost anyone could have a child, but mostly everyone was uncertain whether the economy and opportunities were going to get any worse.  So we had to seize the moment and dive in.

 

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We were fueled by the fear of not wanting to have to face what our parents’ childhood did, nor did we want to be victim of what was circulating around us:  doom and gloom.  Not just economically either.  There was a cold war going on.

I watch CNN’s series on the 80s and it sometimes makes me wonder if I was asleep during this period?  However, the biggest news stories of the day did register on my radar.  Yet I was simply too busy buckling down and working to keep from drowning from economic disaster.

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One could take a look at that period and extrapolate a culture of survivorship, strong work ethic and ingenuity that came along with that era.   We weren’t afraid to start at the bottom and work our way up from the bottom.  So different from the sense of entitlement expounding today.

So, if I happen to be surrounded by Millennials, they should be so lucky.  Anyone in their 50s, born of the 80s careers, has an element of work ethic and the right attitude that an employer should want to sprinkle into their workforce.

 

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Today’s employers think they’re pretty nifty to use technology to prove who is producing and who should be perished to the unemployment line.  Metrics have displaced instinct and doing what is right for their business and their customers.  Why, because they have strengths that are likely not acknowledged, never mind recognized:

  1. They know how to get it done right the first time – slower does not mean stupid.
  2. Speed and agility is aligned with accuracy – what happens when it’s done wrong?
  3. They have pride in their work and are often overlooked because employers want to fast track the younger workers to ensure that they are cultivated to perform.
  4. Beauty is often disassociated with age.  When there are so many beautiful people that are aging and setting strong examples for the youth.
  5. They avoid sitting around feeling sorry for themselves because they were not brought up to think that way.
  6. They were taught that if things aren’t going your way, it means you have to work harder.

Can you think of other attributes that the aging workforce contributes?  I certainly can think of at least a dozen more.  But I’m more excited to write this commentary and send it out into the universe to capture others that agree and stop the downward spiral of misinterpreting value that should be embraced, not shuffled off into obscurity.

 

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Then again, there are some of us that write a Blog to expel our wisdom to the masses.  To head off mistakes that surely are happening from this mistaken philosophy.  There are simply so many of us that began our careers at the worst time in decades, until recently, that can be learned from, not banished.  We’re survivors, we’re really smart, and we have the “can do” attitude that no metric or test can uncover.

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#TGIF #Friday

#TGIF #Friday

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I wrote this last night. Rarely would I think this reminiscing should appear on the more serious veneer of optioneerJM or expose a side of Jeannette Marshall, not many have seen. 


It does tend to fall into our twenties. Not important, the early or late years. Your career starts to take off somehow. You spin around, just to see everyone IS looking at you.



You are a model citizen, responsible adult with some post-secondary education that no matter how thick is a foundation you can pull forward in those wondering times. Was it work ethic, looks, personality, education or street smarts? That won many others over and where you were allowed to spread your wings.

 

Nowadays, to get a foot in the door, you have to have heeps of experience, or make degrees into diplomas or walk out of the door. How lucky I am and even at the time I still did. How did magical things happen to this average ole kid.

Wait a minute. You were an average old kid? Like does that mean when you were a kid you seemed older, or as you got older you got hipper? I mean average. Really? Does that mean academics?


Should you be reminded how in grade school, your meanest toughest teacher on record, yet you don’t even remember his name. The one who pushed you above so many in leaps and bounds. So that the next year, away you sat with three other boys, working on math from the proceeding years, For those who may benefit. Guess that ain’t ole average after all.

I got on a tangent as I often do. Forcing my attention back to the matter at hand.


The 1980s were fab-tas-tic-u-lust. Opps, was that an accident or on purpose? I’d hazard a guess that what makes a writer creative is the disguise he or she wears creating characters that they could dream up while never would dare, do or try what their characters could.



Some call the 60s just outtasight. But wasn’t it the 70s that gave us our might? Skipping along with our brothers or sis humming or tap tap tapping like a drum.  To the music that made those a decade ahead, believe that peace, science and academics were what matters in stead.


I was born in the shadows of that rebirth, long before greed, politics, money because the currency of luck.  After all, our immediate forefathers, young enough and wise enough who we may have considered brothers.


Then what happened? We huddled behind our desks, cozied up on our couch, watching wholesome TV shows like Mr. Ed the horse, or the Mr. Ed before Sullivan.  Bewitched, Three’s Company long before Friends.


We were too young to understand all the fuss over four young men arrived on the continent on a bus, or was that an airplane?

Don’t laugh too hard but when we graduated from High School, it was all about Disco, lights and all that fuzz.  Agreeably, we were mostly ignorant about beer or getting a buzz.

 

That wasn’t our scene.  Do you wanna know what was?  Going to school, then getting all gussied up like those 50s gals, except with very high heels and more conservative skirts than the 60s, yet not abandoned like the 70s.


We were a generation when it was about life being about the basics:  having a family, going to Midnight Mass at Christmas, with newcomers at the table because it was unthinkable, while it was not at all that new yet authentic, for anyone from the neighbourhood, school or work be left alone on the Holidays.  Funny, some folks even went to church, more often than not, which was never a conversation at the

dinner table was religion a topic sought.


Yes, the 80s were rad.  You can’t disagree when all the Millinnials embrace the decade.  It was a time when life was pretty basic, much less controversies, scandals, violence in our sphere.  We pushed on, went to school, excelled in athletics or guide/scouts, year after year.


We weren’t in the years when what our peers did or thought, was more important than our home, our families, parents, siblings and such.


Now there was drugs, alcohol, and permiscuaty in talked in back alleys not permiated by media, television, radio, newspapers and magazines.  In fact, that is when I read and read.  Nothing felt better or safer than in bed, with a book.  Being called to set the table, dinner was ready, would nearly break the imagination captured, dreading to just put it down.  Then we skooted outside so the adults could breathe, instead of the chatter and noise four kids bring, when turning on the TV was the very last thing.


Whoop whoop to the 80s.  Think about it, that was when the computer and music playing instruments were being revolutionized.  Ignorant were we that it would only be a phase.

 

The emergence of drugs and crime started to hold us spellbound.  Theatrics and lies joined them as the norm in the 90s.





Then we hit a new century.  Brought on alongside sheer panic that we were doomed when the clock was to pass midnight 23:59 1999 to 24:00 2000.  Makes you think, maybe we were really that lucky.


We were into our 30s by then.  Usually happily married or two times past.  Consumed with a passion never before known:  the power of money over towered us, some cast in gloom.


Whoever said “money can’t buy you love” as a quote turned into a famous tune?  Wasn’t really far off when you consider how fast hatred, jealousy, terrorism, violence can grow. 


Our own children now in their twenties as we near closer to 2020s.  Mixed with fear, and far less optimism than we were allowed.  Where diseases as bola, violence created by religion long before born.  


Yet they are the children of the 80s youngsters born of the 60s, wherein lies as when the basics were born.  Long before when a child could ride a bike alone, and still make it home.   Long before millions became billions …. in debt.  Where politicians, not parents or teachers, became scorned.


We were brought up in a world where politics were faded in the background, until a corrupt President was ousted.  Scandals were drugs, pre-marital sex very private, and violence against women, far less, children was even known.


The faint dew drops of that optimism allows many to soar.  Behind them strong parents, with morals from when the ideal foundation was formed.



When searching for royalty free images to enhance this Blog, I thought it ironic what the iconimic image covering The Times would symbolize the new century.  When the horror in Paris would mark this year approaching its end: 2015 my friend.

 


Bowing my head over these keys, gives me pause as our refugees arrive in Canada today with the belief that ours is a much safer world, with opportunity, humanity and peace.  Let us remember that “our” means our world, our harmony, our hope, our peace is not your, mine, me, or I.  It takes a lot of people to keep us from harm.

 

Vincent Van Gogh “Sunny Meadow”


Can we get back to the basics?  Only personally and privately we may have to reflect.  Will we help others, the poor, the fearful, the aging, the lonely, to never neglect.  We do have the power to make it basic again.

Sunny camomile meadow – Margaret Raven Art Gallery