Publishing house Debrett’s, which is best known for having taught social etiquette to the Royal family for more than 200 years, is extending their services to Gen Y workers who are struggling at work.
Its new programme on ‘social intelligence’ for under-30s has been established after a number of business leaders raised serious issues around young employees entering the modern workplace.
The courses have also come amidst accusations that schools and universities are not adequately developing well-rounded individuals, and are instead more focused on academic results, The Daily Mail reported.
Debrett’s own research highlights the concerns that many young employees struggle to make eye contact at work or interact with senior colleagues.
It states that “manners, social intelligence, personal presentation and impact can be as important as academic qualifications”.
“With so much focus on exam results and the hectic informality of modern family life and technology, social graces can be a casualty.”
According to their research, 63% of senior executives said office juniors lack social skills, and a quarter of them admitted they have been embarrassed by them in front of clients.
A quarter of executives also said prospective candidates had inflated expectations about salary and were “over-confident” in interviews, while 21% sais young employees dressed “inappropriately” for work or drink too much at social events.
Louise Ruell, Debrett’s director of training, said: “Young employees need to differentiate themselves beyond their academic achievements.
“The research clearly shows that this is often lacking.”