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3 Causes of Entitlement Mindsets in Small Business (Hint: It’s Not a Generational Issue)

One of my most popular seminars the last 12-months has been Managing Multi-Generations in a 21st Century Work Environment and one of the big issues that came up was “entitlement mindsets.”

Realize that 29 of the 30 session attendees were Generation X and Baby-Boomers. We had just one Millennial.

Most of the comments on entitlement mindsets were about the Millennial generation, until I asked if there were entitlement mindsets from any other generation in their workplaces. Everyone agreed there was.

It’s not a generational issue.

Blaming this on generations deflects responsibility from company leadership.

What it is, is, a hiring and performance management issue.

One of my newer clients has an issue with more senior members of their staff historically have avoided any growth opportunities to learn new skills who are just hanging on ’til retirement.

After that seminar, and hearing comments from participants on what was happening in their work environments I thought about what caused an entitlement mindset in a workplace.

I think there are three primary causes:

  • Leadership focusing on office face-time instead of productivity around clearly defined results. What gets measured in these environments is people who are on-site during the required number of hours or beyond the required hours, but nothing other than time on-site is measured to track contribution.
  • Leadership focusing on longevity and seniority instead of productivity around clearly defined goals. Just because someone has been an employee for a long period of time and may have the most seniority doesn’t mean they are entitled to the same or more benefits as anyone else. Yet, many employees see it that way and company leaders continue to tolerate it.
  • Leadership continually providing upward salary adjustments and even offering bonuses without tying them to productivity around clearly defined results.

I think you can see the common point across all three causes. It’s all due to a lack of productivity being tied to clearly defined results.

How does your small business workplace fare in regards to those three causes of “entitlement mindset?”

Leave a comment below and help me continue the conversation.


For another resource to help you with communication in your workplace take a look Your Championship Small Business Podcast launching this week.

To learn more and subscribe to the podcast go to this webpage and you’ll be forever invited to the monthly interviews. The first episode was released , Tuesday, January 17.

The upcoming third episode is to be released on March 14th is with PH.D. and best-selling author Ron Friedman who wrote Best Place to Work: The Art & Science of Creating an Extraordinary Workplace.

If you want to create a Championship Company and workplace, you are going to want to sign up and join us for the podcast.

Also starting on March 1, 2017 I will be starting Championship Small Business Facebook Discussion Group, which you will also be invited to join once you sign up for the podcast subscription.

To sign up, go here: www.YourChampionshipCompany.com/Pages/JoinPodcast

‘til next time, remember, Communicate With Power!

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