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Can job description call for ‘high energy’ worker?

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in Hiring,HR Management,Human Resources

Q. I am updating job descriptions. We sometimes use the term “high energy” as a qualification. Does this violate the ADA or other laws? — J.M., Massachusetts

A. Generally speaking, you should avoid any language in job advertisements and job descriptions that imply you prefer younger people or those without disabilities. Instead, replace “high energy” with specific, objective tasks and responsibilities.

You could, for example, state that the job requires extensive travel, initiative, creativity, the ability to be a self-starter and to juggle multiple projects simultaneously and work late or long hours. In other words, stick with actual tasks and avoid generalizations that could be misinterpreted.

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