What bothers is me the widespread use of this at workplace and how people accept this concept unquestionably.
Let's start off with a favourite flaw that my dad finds in Indian Govt services. Seniority is determined by year of joining. For all people who joined the same year, the guy who got max score in the entrance exam is ranked higher. I will not touch upon the issue of is this rank the best yardstick for the next 30 years. The strinking point here is that the person who came last, last year is more senior than the person who came first this year!!! DUH
Enter the 21st century. IT sector is the rave. No more arcane govt services. Eveything is "corporate, competitive, etc etc". When was the last time you saw a 40 year old guy with 15 years work ex in this very field still code? I cant rememeber ever seeing one. Look at the US. Right now, I'm working with a guy in this 30's and most people who report to him are older. One of them lookish very close to 60!!! And yes, they all code for a living. Every other loser, no matter how thickskulled, becomes some sort of a manager here at the end of 5yrs of work. By the time he has completed 10 years, he is roaming with a laptop making powerpoint presentations when he is not delivering one or wachting one made my someone else (yes, there are exceptions and not everyone is thickskulled, but they are: exceptions). In India, as you move up the ranks, you can see the shift in age at all levels.
Here are some of the consequnces of this:
1)Dumb guy becomes manager, hires dumber ppl as he knws he is superior and ppl who work under him are prone to be dumb.
2)In 5 years, dumber guy becomes manager and hires even more dumber ppl (read: goto step1)
3)The entire industry grows for every manager likes to expand his empire and finding headcount is easy. Collective intelligence becomes comparable to that of a herd of cattle.
This, I think is the number one reason for brain drain. The moment you try to defy your perceived age barrier capabilities, there is whole wide world out there to pass all sorts of comments and ensure you back where you belong to