The Entitlement Quandary

One of the more interesting challenges in today’s workplace is dealing with the issue of entitlement. It has crept in around the edges of virtually all companies, and once it arrives, it’s hard to eradicate.

This issue exists across all generations, but it seems to bubble up more often among Millennials. Many have been told how wonderful they are for so long that they can’t understand why their employers don’t believe it.

It’s easy to deal with entitlement when the employee isn’t performing; you reassign them to other jobs or you fire them. That’s relatively easy, and your downside is limited.

The bigger challenge exists when entitlement emerges from high performing employees who believe they are indispensable. If there is a modicum of truth to this perception, they have the potential to artfully hold you hostage so they can demand what they think they deserve in terms of compensation, promotions, perks – you name it.

How can you avert this entitled behavior? Very carefully….

One piece of advice is to watch how and when you praise high performing (entitled) employees. Often you are so appreciative of employees who take the initiative, go the extra mile, and leap over mountains in a single bound that you tend to heap on the compliments.

Don’t get me wrong – it’s important to commend strong performance. If you overdo it, though, entitlement begins to seep in. This is what you need to watch.

I’m interested in your experiences in dealing with entitlement, so feel free to drop me an email.

Have a great day!

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