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12 Things to Never Say to Younger and Older Coworkers

Nina Kim | Excelle

To an Older Coworker: “I didn’t know you were so old!”


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This comment might come from an initially innocuous and complimentary thought, as in, there’s no way that person is that old — she looks so young! But saying this out loud or expressing shock at an older worker’s age might well turn out to be extremely offensive to them.

Before gasping or widening your eyes, put yourself in your coworker’s shoes and think about the intent of your statement. If you’re just trying to say your older coworker looks good for her age, just say so. “You look great for your age!” will be taken far more graciously than “I didn’t know you were so old!”


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