The website Gawker.com has published yet another embarrassing internal document from retail giant Target’s HR shop. This one, leaked by employees, instructs managers on how to talk to the four generations working in Target stores: veterans, baby boomers, generation X and generation Y. What could possibly go wrong? Plenty.
The problem: The guidelines come across as patronizing to all ages, but older workers in particular. It says so-called veterans are “slow to adapt to change,” “rarely question authority” and see technology as “complex and challenging.” Such descriptions are pure gold to plaintiffs’ attorneys who represent older workers alleging discrimination. They make it easy to persuade jurors thattreats workers differently based on age.
The latest leak follows the similar disclosure of another stereotype-laden document telling Target managers how to manage women and specific minority groups.