Tuesday, June 01, 2010

Teaching Work Values to Children of Wealth

“Seriously middle-class families have said for a long time that the investment I’ve made in you is giving you a good education and then you’re on your own,” Ms. Godfrey said. “But now these families are realizing they have a great education, but yikes, it’s tough for them to be on their own. Now it’s not how much money you have, but how big is your network and how can you connect them.”

SHOOT: I think parents can learn a lot from this.
clipped from www.nytimes.com

GOOD HELP So what is the right way to help a child struggling to find a job or a career? Ms. Godfrey said it could be difficult to get children started, or what she calls “launched.”

“A year ago, when we started to do fairly serious work on the launch process, I thought we were dealing with families who had slackers,” she said. “The more we got into it, the more we realized that these were kids who are educated but are having a tough time getting into a purposeful path that will help them maintain their lifestyle.”

She urges families to set two goals: get children living without subsidies and put them on a career track. “Those families that treat their kids’ launch like any other endeavor are having the most success,” she said.

This means parents and children need to discuss expectations. If financial help is involved, it cannot be infinite and that must be explained. But most of all, parents have to realize there is more to be done than just educating their children.

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