How to Make Clients Trust You When You Look Young
Age-related bias is usually reserved for professionals who are middle-aged or older, but it also affects young professionals viewed as too inexperienced to bring anything of value to the table. They have to fight for respect from their older colleagues, and the battle is even more challenging for young women in the workforce. You can’t age yourself overnight or shy away from contributing, but you can take steps that will prove your worth to your superiors.
Dress for the Job
Image via Flickr by wocintechchat.com
It doesn’t seem fair that you should have to alter your appearance to gain respect, but in corporate spaces, you still have to dress for the job you want. Think of it as changing your aesthetic from nine to five. However, there are measures you can take to make yourself seem more mature, but not necessarily older. Adopt a wardrobe filled with timeless basics, classic colors, and professional pieces. Choose accessories and jewelry with similar care. Save your wild hairdo and signature style for the weekends. After all, trends are typically viewed as being for younger employees.
Show Up, but Don’t Show Off
Image via Flickr by Ray_LAC
Your coworkers act like your age means you’re inexperienced and incapable. Prove them wrong by shining brightly. Show up early to work. Get to meetings before anyone else. Be one of the last people to leave any time there’s work to do. Step up to come up with creative ideas and offer to take the lead on projects. Be sure to do everything with a sense of humility. No one likes a show-off. It might spark more resentment among your older colleagues. Prove to them that you’re also open to their insights, and ask for advice when you need help.
Become a High-Tech Standout
Image via Flickr by startupphotos
Young professionals have technology on their side. That’s not to say that older people don’t know how to use the latest tech, but they aren’t as likely to understand advances and new programs, particularly on mobile devices. Just as your parents call you about everything internet- or computer-related, you can become the office techie.
The iPhone 8 is ideal for young employees who want to succeed and impress. It’s engineered for fast, smooth multitasking, plus you get the value of Siri as a personal assistant. Use the iPhone 8 on T-Mobile’s 4G LTE network and impress your coworkers with your willingness to work on the go, your ability to pull up stats within seconds, and your knowledge of cloud computing. When on a reliable 4G LTE network you have the ability to introduce your colleagues to new apps and programs that streamline business processes and improve communication.
Own Every Meeting
Don’t give your new office buddies the chance to doubt your skills. Arrive prepared for every meeting you attend. Whatever the problem might be, walk in with at least three potential solutions. You’ll want to avoid appearing arrogant or cocky, but don’t let age bias dim your shine. Never shy away from the tasks set by your superiors, no matter your level of experience.
For project meetings, research is critical. Whether your boss wants to launch an incentive program, institute a Coffee Is for Closers activity in the morning, or plan a team outing, bring your ideas to the table. Research what other businesses and companies do. Be proactive and discover what your coworkers think, like, and hate.
Adjust Your Body Language
Your body language tells other people everything they need to know about you. Are you sending the correct message? You need to tweak your gestures and postures as a young person in a workplace staffed by people older than you. Above all, keep your head high, shoulders back, and spine straight. Maintain eye contact and assert your confidence.
Experience is valuable, but it isn’t everything. No one should ever make you feel like you can’t do something or won’t excel at it just because you haven’t been in the business for that long. Intuition and knowledge are powerful, too. Have you ever encountered age bias in the workplace?