Opportunities Are Earned, Not Given

Entitlement is an ugly attitude that brings down everyone around you. It’s good to be hungry and want to progress in one’s career, but entitlement rubs me the wrong way. From having had employees only a few months into their roles say that they’re better than the job they have, to people blatantly not doing work because they think it’s “below” them, I’ve seen all sorts of cases. It’s upsetting to witness and I’ve seen this more lately with younger hires fresh into new roles.

However, it’s not just a younger hire issue, as I’ve witnessed the same problem with more experienced individuals too. In one instance, we were looking to hire a candidate that I believed was going to make a major impact on our team. Everything seemed to align. It was a step-up in responsibility for this individual, substantially better pay, and our team would be adding someone who I believed could make a major impact for us. Sadly, once the candidate learned that there were others on the team slightly younger with similar and slightly higher titles, they complained to our recruiter that they wanted a promotion, specifically citing that they were older and “didn’t want to be on the same level with a bunch of kids”. The level of experience and expectations were set and in-line throughout the entire hiring process. The package we put together was extremely generous. But feeling entitled to more because those with similar amounts of experience and expertise happened to be younger…. Ugh.

I want individuals who are motivated and passionate about the work and the colleagues around them. I’ve learned over time that team chemistry plays an important factor in productivity, employee retention, and passion. Team chemistry is also a tricky balance at times, one that withers quickly if even one person has a bad attitude or isn’t aligned by the same motivating factors. Entitlement is an ugly characteristic I suggest avoiding wherever possible.