Unit VI Homework
Use the CSU Online Library and look up the article “Baby Boomers Seek New Ways to Escape Career Claustrophobia”
through the ABI/INFORM Complete database (from June 24, 2003). Use this article to help write a two-page memo
outlining your recommendations for developing managers who are stuck in their jobs or feel underutilized. Use Microsoft
Word to create your memo. You can use a memo template or create your own memo.
Be sure to cite all the sources used according to APA format.IN THE LEAD: Baby Boomers Seek New Ways to Escape
Career Claustrophobia
By Carol Hymowitz. Wall Street Journal, Eastern edition [New York, N.Y] 24 June 2003: B.1.
Abstract
TranslateAbstract
One 50-something manager who spent most of his career in the U.S., transferred to a post in
Budapest three years ago after his children were grown. Recently, he moved again to China, where
he helps local employees understand GE procedures and culture. The opportunities for growth in
China are enormous but you cant establish a work force there overnight, says Ms. [Susan Peters].
We need seasoned people.
Other veteran GE managers are tapped to help integrate newly acquired businesses. They are wellsuited for the task because of their knowledge about GE and experience with people, says Ms.
Peters.
She joined GE 24 years ago in a management-training program in human resources and has since
worked in several divisions, including plastics and appliances, and at NBC. Now at corporate
headquarters in Fairfield, Conn., she encourages other managers to move across GEs diverse
businesses and gain experience in a variety of industries.
Full Text

TranslateFull text

ONE OF THE BIGGEST concerns for managers in their 40s and 50s, besides job security, is the
lack of opportunities for advancement. There are so many baby boomers that the scramble for seats
at the top is highly competitive. Even worse, the usual competition from younger people is tougher
than ever as companies promote ambitious employees even in their 20s who are gaining technical
and global experience very early in life.
The result is that many baby boomers feel underutilized and stuck in jobs they already have
mastered years before they plan to retire. Lots of companies pigeonhole people in their 40s and
older as only being good at one particular thing, says Dory Hollander, an executive career coach in
Arlington, Va. They figure why take a chance on them for something new when they can get
someone younger; but then they end up with managers who feel career claustrophobia.
A few companies recognize the need to motivate all their employees and are grappling with ways to
challenge their baby-boomer managers. They encourage those they dont promote to make lateral
moves that will broaden their experience. They also are receptive to veterans who raise their hands
for very different assignments than they have had in the past. If you dont keep people fresh and
growing, Ms. Hollander warns, they become stagnant.
AT GENERAL ELECTRIC, baby-boomer managers are encouraged to take advantage of the greater
personal mobility they may have when their children leave home or they are more settled. Suddenly
they come to a stage when they may have more flexibility to take a foreign assignment or do
something they couldnt at a younger age, says Susan Peters, vice president, executive
development. Her staff actively recruits seasoned managers for jobs overseas.
One 50-something manager who spent most of his career in the U.S., transferred to a post in
Budapest three years ago after his children were grown. Recently, he moved again to China, where
he helps local employees understand GE procedures and culture. The opportunities for growth in
China are enormous but you cant establish a work force there overnight, says Ms. Peters. We
need seasoned people.
Other veteran GE managers are tapped to help integrate newly acquired businesses. They are wellsuited for the task because of their knowledge about GE and experience with people, says Ms.
Peters.
GEs commitment to continual career development is emphasized during annual reviews, when
employees tell their bosses about their future goals. Those discussions are then reviewed by
operations and human-resource managers, who try to match employees seeking job changes with
new openings. Its part of the DNA here to keep adding things to peoples plates and making sure
they have new opportunities, says Ms. Peters, who is 50.
She joined GE 24 years ago in a management-training program in human resources and has since
worked in several divisions, including plastics and appliances, and at NBC. Now at corporate
headquarters in Fairfield, Conn., she encourages other managers to move across GEs diverse
businesses and gain experience in a variety of industries.
MARK WEBER, president and chief operating officer of New York apparel maker Phillips-Van
Heusen, hopes his companys recent acquisitions of businesses, such as Calvin Klein, will provide
new career opportunities for seasoned employees. Now a manager of a branded business can
move to a design business, says Mr. Weber.
Mt. Weber has had 25 different assignments in his 31 years at the company. It has always been
exciting, and part of my job now is to create new mountains for others to climb, he says.
What can baby boomers do to renew their careers if they are at companies or organizations that
dont tap them for promotions or even lateral moves? You cant go around whining, says Barbara
Barski-Carrow, a senior consultant at the governments Health and Human Services department who
just turned 60 and plans to work for many more years. You have to think very carefully about what
you want to do and become an ally to your boss. If youre clear about your goals and are a team
player, youre more likely to get support.
She has worked at HHS for the past 16 years on an assortment of jobs, some of which she
designed. Among these: developing a training program on sexual harassment, and training and
leadership development for Hispanic employees. She also networks with an array of professionals
outside her agency. The contacts and exposure keep me thinking about new ideas and different
approaches, she says.
Ms. Hollander, the career coach, also urges baby boomers to seek outlets for talents or aspects of
their personality they havent had a chance to express. Midlife is a time when parts of the self that
have been neglected begin to bubble up, she says. Bean counters may suddenly need to do more
creative work, while people who have been adventurous may need more stability.
–E-mail comments to inthelead@wsj.com. To see other recent columns, go to CareerJournal.com.
Word count: 827
Copyright Dow Jones & Company Inc Jun 24, 2003
IN THE LEAD: Baby Boomers Seek New Ways to Escape
Career Claustrophobia
By Carol Hymowitz. Wall Street Journal, Eastern edition [New York, N.Y] 24 June 2003: B.1.
1.
Full text
2.
Abstract/Details
Abstract
TranslateAbstract
One 50-something manager who spent most of his career in the U.S., transferred to a post in
Budapest three years ago after his children were grown. Recently, he moved again to China,
where he helps local employees understand GE procedures and culture. The opportunities for
growth in China are enormous but you cant establish a work force there overnight, says Ms.
[Susan Peters]. We need seasoned people.
Other veteran GE managers are tapped to help integrate newly acquired businesses. They are
well-suited for the task because of their knowledge about GE and experience with people, says
Ms. Peters.
She joined GE 24 years ago in a management-training program in human resources and has since
worked in several divisions, including plastics and appliances, and at NBC. Now at corporate
headquarters in Fairfield, Conn., she encourages other managers to move across GEs diverse
businesses and gain experience in a variety of industries.
Details
Subject
Baby boomers;
Employee promotions
Title
IN THE LEAD: Baby Boomers Seek New Ways to EscapeCareer Claustrophobia
Author
By Carol Hymowitz
Publication title
Wall Street Journal, Eastern edition
Pages
B.1
Number of pages
0
Publication year
2003
Publication date
Jun 24, 2003
Publisher
Dow Jones & Company Inc
Place of publication
New York, N.Y.
Country of publication
United States
Publication subject
Business And Economics–Banking And Finance
ISSN
00999660
Source type
Newspapers
Language of publication
English
Document type
Commentary
ProQuest document ID
398842808
Document URL
https://libraryresources.columbiasouthern.edu/login?url=http://search.proquest.com.libraryresources.
columbiasouthern.edu/docview/398842808?accountid=33337
Copyright
Copyright Dow Jones & Company Inc Jun 24, 2003
Last updated
2010-06-26

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