Generations

TLBS - Just Saying

The workplace can present challenges to management in terms of handling the different generations present.  As older workers delay retiring and younger workers are entering the workforce, the work environment has become a patchwork of varying perspectives and experiences, all valuable to say the least.

While having various cultures in one workplace can present communication problems and conflicts, the benefits of such a variety in the workplace outweigh it.  Both the young and older worker has many ideas to offer, which can help the organization thrive in the marketplace.  Learning how to deal with the generation gap at work will help you become a better manager or co-worker.

This book will help you understand the various generations present at work and understand what motivates them and how to deal with them on a daily basis.  Before we start learning about the generation gap at work, let us begin our session with an activity that will help us get ready for learning and learn more about each other.

The term generation gap is a term used to describe the different values and attitudes between one generation and another.  This term is typically used to describe the gap between parents and their children. 

Since the 1960’s, the term generation gap has also been used to describe the clash one age group has with another in various settings.  The workplace is such an environment where different generations must intermingle and deal with each other’s way of thinking.

In order to be successful bridging the gap across the generations, you must find common ground that enables you to close the gap and effectively reach your opposing generation

Being sensitive to the way you communicate will help you bridge the generation gap at work.  Understanding that the older generation prefers face-to-face communication and the younger prefer electronic methods should give you a base to form a flexible communication style that reaches all generations at work.

Affinity groups are groups of people sharing common interests.  You can create such groups at work that give different generations a chance to work with each other with an activity, which is not directly work related. 

These groups provide a way for the generations to learn more about each other’s interests and values.  You can create several affinity groups, promoting cohesion among the various generations.  Affinity groups are usually non-hierarchical.  They are typically small and do not require centralization. 

Affinity groups could tend to become closed.  That is why allowing groups that focus on non-polarized topics are the best way to introduce affinity groups in your workplace. 

Leveraging the best of all the generations at work could result in benefits that help your workplace become a better place work.  Each generation brings unique traits that can complement the other generations.

We have more information regarding generation gaps in our Resource Centre

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