Friday, April 25, 2008

Glanville on Rookies and Veterans: A Workplace Lesson for All?

Mlblogo Al Brophy (Alabama) of The Faculty Lounge brings to my attention a piece by former Philadephia Phillie Doug Glanville in the New York Times today about the relationship between rookies and veterans:

You enter the big leagues (usually) as a young, vibrant, wide-eyed rookie, inspired and inspiring and still able to talk about your career with the excitement of a 5-year-old. Then, at the speed of light, you’re a seasoned veteran, with loads of “experience” by the ripe old age of 34, and it takes two whirlpool massages just to get ready for batting practice . . . .

I understood that I was now entrenched on the other side of the bell curve. I was sliding downward into the “long in the tooth” spiked pit. My competition’s relatively minimal major league experience had become more valuable, in a way, than my library of experience. Somehow I had missed the transition point in my career where my value to a team had intersected with the value of a new kid on the block . . . .

Young players don’t want feel dismissed just because they haven’t been around the block any more than veterans want to have their years of experience discarded. And after all, there are different types of contributions, to be made by young and old, that can get a team to the same place. It just depends on what you are looking for and how you want it done.

Is this a good lesson for all workers in this age of age discrimination in which we seem to live (note the five ADEA Supreme Court cases this Term alone)?

And, of course, GO PHILLIES!!!


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