Episode 77: How to Gain Respect When You’re the Youngest Person in Your Department
In today's episode of the Beyond the Business Suit podcast I want to talk to those of you who may find yourself being the youngest one at your job or in your department. When I was 22 years old I was hired as the #2 person in an HR department. I was working for an electrical distribution company in a manufacturing plant in a small town in South Carolina and the person who had the job before me had been in the job for twenty years. So here I was, fresh out of college and soooo wet behind the ears.
I am still surprised I got the job. They were looking for someone who had 5-7 years of experience and I only had a summer internship! Since I only got that job by the grace of God, I had to make sure that my boss didn't regret his decision to hire me. Not only that, since I was working in human resources, it was a high visibility position and I had to gain respect from people who worked there, many of whom were 2 or 3 times my age! Luckily I was able to gain the respect from my boss, coworkers and even folks in our corporate office. There were several things I did that I think can help you too if you find yourself in this position (listen to the full episode for details):
- Look the part.
- Develop relationships with people outside of your age group
- Look for ways to add value
As always, if you like what you hear, I'd love it if you took 2 minutes to leave a rating and review on iTunes!
Have you found yourself having to prove yourself and gain respect while being the youngest person at your job? Let us know what you did to be successful in the comments below.