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A retiring Boomer’s observations about the tough job market

tough job market

Gen Z and Millennials may be chanting “OK, Boomer” a lot more than normal, but the older generation, the Baby Boomers, have their own grievances. While younger workers may lack the experience of their older colleagues, they are experiencing burnout just like their boomer counterparts. During the COVID-19 pandemic, the phrase “Nobody wants to work anymore” gained popularity, especially during the “Great Resignation” when many workers left or were let go from their jobs. However, now Boomers are noticing how much more challenging it is for younger generations to find jobs compared to the ’80s and ’90s.

What’s the fuss about?

Mike Kelley, a retiring boomer, expressed these observations in a Facebook post. He pointed out that the job market is now much tougher for young people. In his post, Kelley stated that today, you can’t simply drop off resumes and expect a callback; no one will talk to you. Filling out online applications is also a frustrating experience, as they often require you to input the same information from your resume and cover letter. Hiring managers tend to avoid communication and follow-up questions with potential employees, leading to a lack of feedback. Unlike the ’80s, where polite rejection letters were common, today’s job seekers are often “ghosted.”

Kelley highlighted the lackluster salaries and benefits that young workers face. He attributed this to the decline of labor unions, which have historically fought for better wages and working conditions. Despite generational differences, both Millennials and Boomers are motivated by financial incentives. According to a survey by Olivet Nazarene University, 84% of Millennials and 75% of Boomers said they would consider leaving their current jobs for a higher-paying opportunity.

Kelly’s emphasis

Kelley emphasized that the struggles faced by Millennial kids and acquaintances are not just complaints; they are legitimate challenges. He also pointed out that businesses have the freedom to act poorly because they can, suggesting that a lack of regulation and worker representation may contribute to these issues. He acknowledged that he wasn’t sure of the solution but believed that the situation might worsen before improving. He cautioned against buying into the narrative that “people just don’t want to work these days,” as it empowers corporations at the expense of workers.

Kelley’s Facebook post gained significant attention, with over 8,200 shares and 700 comments. Many people resonated with his message and expressed their gratitude for him addressing these concerns. Commenters praised him for understanding the challenges faced by younger generations and for not dismissing them as “whiny babies.” They saw him as a reflective and gracious individual and wished for more people like him in the world.

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