Workplace Dynamics: The Multi-Generational “Dilemma”

Mom and Dad, the Forgotten Older Middle Child, the Whiny Hipster with a Trophy…. ​

Workplace Dynamics: The Multi-Generational “Dilemma"

Workplace dynamics are more complex than ever before! Or are they? There have always been 20 somethings working at companies alongside 50 somethings, so why does it feel like now in 2016 people are hypersensitive to the different generations in the workplace? Could it be because we have three different generations with catchy names working side-by-side and their catchy names alone demand such attention?

  • The Baby Boomers! Products of the greatest generation who bring experience and wisdom to the workplace.
  • Generation X! The rebellious and independent generation that grew up on grunge and traded their flannel for Burberry.
  • The Millennials! Don’t hurt their feelings… and take note, every one of them has a trophy on their desk. (I’m a millennial by the way… and I actually have a trophy on my desk, but I earned it!)

How can these different generations that have been so clearly defined by (enter media source here) possibly function together in a business environment? The fact of the matter is that this “dilemma” isn’t anything new. In 1971 there were multiple generations working side-by-side, the only difference from then to now is that we have collected years and years of data that has sent some into generational analysis paralysis.

To manage a generationally diverse workforce means to understand your employees so they can be motivated and engaged. What motivates and engages a millennial is much different than that of a Baby Boomer. I would argue that the same held true in 1971, only there weren’t clearly defined generations with classifications and stereotypes; there were simply younger or older employees with more or less experience. Being able to balance a diverse workforce is essential for any business. It allows for new exciting ideas, naiveté that can bring change and innovation, and the knowledge and wisdom that can only be gained through years of experience in the business world.

How do you manage the different generations at your workplace? Is there a conscious effort to hire a balanced staff both generationally and with varying degrees of experience? Comment below or Tweet us @TheDavisCos.

This is a video of Oblong Industries CEO, John Underkoffler talking about balancing an effective Staff.

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