In response to your article (Generation Gripe, 13 June, page 67), how disappointing that staying late at work is still viewed by some as the only sign of commitment.

The systems and technology are now with us to allow people to work from home or on the move – not all being office bound.

The anonymous QS should grasp the nettle and discuss the matter with his line manager. Notwithstanding any age differences, one could variously argue those remaining late are:

  • being overworked
  • working inefficiently either as a result of management shortcomings or their own
  • making up time spent out of the office, for whatever reason, or
  • also playing the “don’t want to be seen as the first to leave” game.

I have been fortunate enough to work in environments where flexibility on the part of the employer has seen start/finish times reflect the working pattern of the individual – some work better early mornings and others don’t come on stream until later in the day. Trust is the key word here and an individual’s productivity will soon indicate to the effective manager whether or not that trust is misplaced.

From the middle of the spectrum of working ages, I have observed the determination and self-discipline of a lot of mature workers being resented by the younger element from a modern society where an easy life is expected, or seen as an entitlement, largely as a result of the culture of celebrity seen by some as a form of career.

That said, I have been fortunate and worked with some very hardworking young people. I’ve also seen some atrocious bully-boy management from mature people who, while good at their skill sets, have been put into management roles because that’s the only vehicle by which their pay can be elevated. These individuals believed the only way to show commitment was to “put the hours in”.

Good management should be bridging generation gaps – all have something to offer.

Soapbox now back under desk!

Mark Sorge, land manager, David Wilson Homes Southern