DEAR HARRIETTE: The company I work for has recently implemented new computer applications that are advanced and hard to figure out.
The young people in my work grew up using these applications, so they never had a hard time with these changes. Older people, like myself, struggle.
It took me months to get used to all the different technologies they now need to use.
None of these things are in my job description. Could it be a form of age within the company?
DEAR AGE DISCRIMINATION: The use of new technology is not equivalent to age. Failure to support employees who need help to expedite the process.
Instead of accusing your company of anything, ask for help. Be alert. Explain that you are having difficulty learning new applications and need support. Ask for tutorials or live help from the IT department.
If there is little interest in helping you, talk to other employees who are struggling, and ask questions together. There is power in numbers.
DEAR HARRIETTE: I was a Black woman in my early 20s. One of my best friends is a White woman from the neighborhood.
We have been close since middle school. She and I are very good because, even though our backgrounds are very different, she has always had a strong desire to educate herself in other cultures, especially mine. He was awake.
I’m not big on mixing up groups of friends, but I was excited to introduce my best friend to the new friends I met in college (all black women) when they visited my town. born not long ago.
For whatever reason, my best friend started acting completely differently around them. You’d think he hadn’t been with the Blacks before that day. She seemed not only comfortable, but shocked by the shell. She asked one of my friends about her hair looking ignorant, and my friend was far from ignorant.
Fortunately, he didn’t offend anyone. I have never seen him do this to my family or anything. What could it be?
Movement is different
DEAR OTHER ACTING: Obviously your friend is not in his or her comfortable place. Being one-on-one with you is easy for him; not so much when he is with a group of your friends. I’m glad nothing bad happened.
Now it’s your time to go back and talk to him. Ask him how he feels about meeting your friends. Start with the positives. What does he like? Who does he like? What does he remember positively? Then, what feels awkward or uncomfortable? Did he already feel like he was wrong to speak?
After he shares his views, tell him what you observed. Be specific and realistic but not judgmental. Show him with examples how he did not “wake up,” and explain the parts he did not seem to know. Ask him what happened. Help him interpret his experience.
Yes, that’s a lot of work for you, but you put your friends together. Now you need to help him figure out his way forward, which includes why he didn’t feel like it in the first place.
Harriette Cole is a lifestylist and founder of DREAMLEAPERS, an initiative to help people access and activate their dreams. You can send questions to email@example.com oc/o Andrews McMeel Syndication, 1130 Walnut St., Kansas City, MO 64106.