Development, Leadership and Fairness for millennials at work. Could we be discriminated on the basis of age?
Cardiff Metropolitan University
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Introduction - The introduction touches upon the relationship between millennials, age, discrimination, leadership and development. Evidence of potential millennial stereotyping provide a rationale for this paper. The study sought to contribute to the understanding of millennial discrimination by determining if in reality millennials could be discriminated on the basis of age; and if this could hinder their professional development. Literature Review - The literature review evidences the existence of several millennial stereotypes and highlights the complications faced by millennials at work. A complex relationship between millennials and leadership at work is detailed. It was shown how the negative stereotyping of millennials should be considered by HR professionals. Sources that challenged millennial stereotyping were also illustrated; and some of the negative implications of prejudging millennial employees were established. A lack of real life accounts of millennial discrimination was apparent which justified the researcher's interviews. Methodology - The methodology rationalised the techniques used in this study, namely semi-structured interviews and thematic analysis. Validity was discussed and limitations identified. Ethical issues surrounding the research were also explored. Results, Analysis & Discussion - The research identified 5 emergent themes all of which contributed to the understanding of millennial discrimination. It was established that a complex framework exists for which to easily discriminate against younger employees. However, perceptions of discrimination were to some extent contestable. Conclusion and Recommendations - This study concluded that millennial stereotyping could be occurring in workplaces and developmental restrictions may occur as a result. Unfairness with regards to this issue is subjective however could definitely arise as a result of prejudice towards millennials. The researcher recommends that further research should be geared towards ascertaining the perspectives of differing groups. It is also advised that practitioners advance their own understanding of millennial discrimination and facilitate awareness amongst others.
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