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Are Parents Over-Involved in Their Child's Work Life?

Photograph by Digital Vision/Photodisc/Getty Images

If you're always looking forward to "Bring Your Kid to Work Day" at the office, this news may brighten your day: Many companies are flipping the idea on its head and are launching "Bring Your Parents to Work Day." But it's also going well beyond that.

When the Millennial generation began entering the workplace just over 10 years ago, companies had to adapt. Twenty- and thirtysomethings are closer to their parents than other generations have been and employers had to find a way to work that into their strategy of recruiting and holding on to their workers.

Some employers have made it a habit to include parents on big decisions like offer letters, employment reviews, interviews and more. They're also being invited to company events, which some say could ultimately hurt company dynamic.

But while it's put employers in an awkward position, they can't help but notice improvement in the bottom line. A director at Northwest Mutual told the Wall Street Journal that parents have a strong influence on their children's decisions, and that influence extends into their career. "Some Northwestern Mutual managers call or send notes to parents when interns achieve their sales goals," the WSJ reported. In other words, the praise would come from all sides, leaving a proud feeling in the kid's mind coming away from the internship and possibly a desire to keep loyal to that same company, come graduation.

Put into perspective, though, it may seem like helicopter parents and their children are having trouble weening themselves from one another. Consider these figures from other countries: An average of 13 percent of recent college graduates worldwide want their parents to get their offer letter (compared to only 6 percent in the U.S.); 8 percent of young employees want mom and dad to get their performance review (compared to just 2 percent in the U.S.). In other words, we're behind the times when it comes to over-involved parent-child relationships.

We want to know: Would you go to your son's or daughter's job interview?

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