GENERATION GAPS COURSE

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GENERATION GAPS

COURSE OUTLINE

While having various cultures in one workplace can present communication problems and conflicts, the benefits of such a variety in the workplace outweigh it. 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. The Generation Gaps workshop will help participants understand the various generations present at work. Both the young and older worker will have ideas and suggestions to offer, which will help the organization thrive in the marketplace. Learning how to deal with the Generation Gaps at work will help you become a better manager or co-worker.

Generations in the Workplace:

  • Traditionalist: The members of this generation were born before 1946

  • Baby Boomers: This generation has members that were born between 1946 and 1964.  

  • Generation X: This segment of the culture was born between 1964 and the mid to late 1970s. 

  • Generation Y: This group was born between 1979 and 1994. 

Background:

  • Traditionalist:Being born before 1946 is what classifies a Traditionalist. Their background spent dealing with social issues.  The traditionalist experienced the Great depression, World War I and World War II.

  • Baby Boomers:Baby Boomers were the product of post war efforts to absorb soldiers returning home from battle.  The government passed the GI Bill of Rights in 1944, which gave soldiers a means to obtain a home, job and start a family. Baby Boomers grew up in an era of prosperity and growth.

  • Generation X: Lived during a time when the country shifted from manufacturing to servicing. Grew up with technology as a part of their lives. They seen the evolution and understand its origins. Generation X's also experienced difficult times in the 1980s and learned to live in tough times. They were raised in two-income homes or single-parent homes. These situations forced many Generation Xers to be placed in day care.

  • Generation Y: Born from the mid-1990s and later. The earliest part of this generation is just entering the workplace. Had technology as a normal part of live and do not know what it is to be without a computer, cell phone or any other electronic devices. Prefers using the Internet as a means of learning and making purchases. Exposed to vast amounts of information, music, and media.

Working Styles

TAP Method For Communication

  • To-the-Point:Make your communication brief and succinct.

  • Adapt:Change the method of communication for your audience.

  • Professional:When in doubt, communicate professionally. Avoid jargon and text abbreviations in your communication. 

Characteristics

  • Traditionalists are loyal. Taught to respect authority. Will avoid causing trouble and are good team players. Least likely to initiate conflict at work. Tendency to resist change. Value safety, security, consistency, and commitment. 

  • Baby Boomers were exposed to a changing world where challenging the established culture was normal. Willing to confront others, will challenge the status quo. Well educated. Hard working: they define themselves by their professions

  • Generation Xers are individualistic and independent. Self-sufficient and flexible. More ethnically. Believe in balancing their work and home life.

  • Generation Yers are prone to communicating electronically. Relies on technology to do their jobs. Values family over work. Looks for flexible schedules at work and a balance between work and life. Achievement-oriented and is confident. 

  • Traditionalists like to be recognized for their hard work.  See work as a team effort and avoid conflict. This group is also technically challenged and they may struggle to learn new technology. They also prefer lecture style training over web-based.  

  • Baby Boomers are career focused and enjoy achieving at work. They like doing complicated work that makes a difference. Very competitive and they equate their worth by their status and position at work. Resourceful and look for different ways to win. Prefer a hierarchal work structure and may find it difficult to work in a flexible environment. Tend to favor face-to-face interaction instead of remote means like emails, text, etc.

  • Generation X Crave responsibility and politely reject authority and fixed work schedules. Will be the first ones to take advantage of technology and incorporate it into their work. Will look for other employment opportunities if it promises advancement of their career. They are less committed to their employers.  Adapt well to change in their workplace and are key drivers of change. Believes in a healthy balance between work and their personal life.

  • Generation Y Motivated by benefits that give them the ability to have flexible schedules. They are not happy with long working hours.  This generation does expect a lot from their employer in terms of new challenges and the opportunity to achieve things.

Retention  Plan

  • Determine what values this person has based on their generational trait.  

  • Prepare several focused questions that may lead to underlying issues.  

  • Ask questions about their personal goals and career milestones and see how you can help them achieve them.

  • Be ready to become an advocate for your employee.  

  • Work with your human resource contact to develop a retention plan.  

How to Learn From Each Other:

The CARE model

  • Collaborate. Your team should be exposed to an environment where ideas are exchanged and at times challenged.  

  • Acknowledge. Teach your team to acknowledge each other’s value.  

  • Respect. Teach your team how to show respect to each other by using proper greetings and posture towards each other. 

  • Equal. Teach your team that all members of the team are equal in value and contribution they bring.  

  • Frequent—make sure your team meets frequently in a team-meeting environment.

  • Informal—make your meeting less formal.  

  • Team building—make your meetings about team building. 

EXPERIENCE.

LEARN.

GROW.

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