Did you know this is the first time in American history that four different generations have worked side-by-side in the workplace? I didn’t…
CTS – The Corporate Training Shop even has a DVD about it. Cam Marston’s new diversity DVD – Managing Four Generations in the Workplace.
According to Sherri Elliott-Yeary – author of “Ties to Tattoos: Turning Generational Differences into a Competitive Advantage” – Generational differences are creating new challenges, including sagging productivity, lack of knowledge transfer and problems with language barriers and stereotypes. It is important to acknowledge and understand these differences.
- Veterans – born before 1946 value hard work, respect for authority and discipline
- Baby boomers born between 1946 and 1964 value loyalty, optimism and involvement
- Generation X, born between 1965 and 1980 value value work-life balance and self-reliance
- Generation Y, born after 1980 value innovation and fun.
Elliott-Yeary says these differences can cause conflicts in the workplace so consider these guidelines:
- Talk about differences in an open and friendly manner.
- Show respect and appreciation for differences. Take the time to emulate positive traits of other generations.
- Keep in mind that success in the workplace rests heavily on values that date back hundreds of generations: respect, tolerance and compassion. These qualities are important for workers of all ages.
When I first read the article I thought it too simplistic and stereotypical of the generations but I think there is some truth to it, what do you think? I would be interested in your comments.
Source: NCTimes – CTW Features Patricia Rivera