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What to Do When Your Boss Is Younger Than You

By Catherine Conlan
Monster Contributing Writer

There are always going to be challenges associated with generational differences in the workplace, but some people find dealing with a younger boss to be especially difficult. If you’re older than your boss, here are some things you should keep in mind.

Show Some Respect
One of the most important things to remember when your boss is younger than you is to show respect, says Robin Throckmorton, president of Strategic HR Inc. “While he or she may be younger, they wouldn’t be in this role if someone didn’t feel they had a lot to offer the role, even if you disagree.”

While it can be easy to think, “my kids are younger than you” or “before you were even born, we…” Throckmorton says if you show respect for your boss, you’ll get it in return.

Be Flexible and Cooperative
Keeping an open mind and staying flexible about how things get done at the office are important when there’s an age difference between you and your boss, says Paul Bernard of Paul Bernard and Associates. “For example, you may be used to a lot of face-to-face meeting time, but your boss may prefer to handle a lot of his communications via text or instant messenger,” he says.

“Don't balk at this -- you'll come across as stubborn and old-fashioned. Instead, try to align yourself as best you can with your boss's management style. You might find that there are some real advantages to doing things differently.”

Bernard then recommends trying to figure out how you can complement your boss' strengths. “Your boss may be a mobile content maven but might need help navigating office politics or be able to use some historical context about your company and how things are typically done. If you can find a way to make your younger boss more successful, yo...
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Looking back, I remember very badly wanting a boyfriend in the third grade, so it didn't surprise me when I came across this list on The Huffington Post, authored by sisters Blaire and Brooke ages 6 and 9, of "boyfriend rules" for their future beaus. (Based, according to their mother, on boyfriend characters from Disney movies and shows like Shake it Up.)

What did surprise me was how precocious some of their requirements are, like "has a good job" and "respects you." I approached...
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