Helicopter Parents

I had an amazing opportunity to speak to a group of learning professionals last Friday.  Anyways – I will write another post on that – however, during the Q&A panel time after the presentations someone asked me a question similar to this.

“Your generation has helicopter parents. Parents, who had a voice in College when things didn’t work out their way because they were footing the bill. Parents who have hovered over their child’s first real job and the employers  negotiating salary, benefits and responsibility. What do you do when the helicopter parents are now involved the HR discussions about complaints filed against their child?”

My jaw dropped. I had no idea what to say. Thankfully one of the other panelist had a really good answer until I could come up with something. However, I still don’t have any really good answer. I hadn’t heard of this before.

But what I did say, was I am embarrassed for that “child”. How could they do that to themselves? Did they know what that made them look like on the job? What was their motive behind getting their parent involved?  When were the parents going to learn that they were sheltering their child – and not letting themselves stand alone and be responsible for their performance and behaviors – was actually a really bad thing; for their child and his or her career.  And if the parent was always their to save and protect the child – whose fault is it? The child – for letting this unacceptable adult behavior go on – or the adult for never letting go of their child – giving them the chance to actually make mistakes, learn from them and grow up.

Personally, it was a great day for me when I was finally financially free from my parents. I haven’t looked back. And if my parents did that I would be ashamed and embarrassed. I love my parents but so glad they have not helicopter’ed me until the grave

So whats really going on? I don’t have any real insight or real stories but would like to see if anyone else has seen this happen?

Any helicopter parents out there? Would love to hear your side to this?

And any adult children out there – who have helicopter parents – interfering with their careers? Or who feel safe with their parents protection?

I would love to know more about what’s actually going on in the workplace with this…