Generational Differences At Work

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This is a presentation to create awareness of the difference PREFERENCES that are often seen by generation

Transcript of Generational Differences At Work

  • Im OK, Youre OK OK ? Lynn Busby [email_address] February, 2009 Title slide (Generational differences and their impact on collaboration and the work environment)
  • Overview:
    • Generational commonalities cut across racial, ethnic, and economic differencesThey all share with their generation what was in the air around them --- news events, music, national catastrophes, heroes, and heroic efforts.
    • (You are where you were when)
    • Depending on when people are/were coming of age, these events of their time have had a significant impact on their belief of the way things should be.* What is right for one generation is often in conflict with what is right for another generation.
    • Clashpoints from When Generations Collide who they Are. Why They clash. How to Solve the Generational Puzzle at work by Lynne C. Lancaster and David Stillman
    • ** Book title from IBMer, Sara Mouton Reger about cultural clashes.
    Can two rights make a wrong?**
  • 1940s
  • 1950s
  • 1960s
  • 1970s
  • 1980s
  • 1990s
  • 2000s
  • In the 1950's Dr. Eric Berne began to develop his theories of Transactional Analysis. He said that verbal communication , particularly face to face, is at the centre of human social relationships. Thomas Harris later wrote a book called Im OK, Youre OK to explain the model and popularized the idea simply stated in diagram below Potential Generational Conflict
  • Age Diversity?
    • How does age diversity affect collaboration in the workplace?
    • We still have a few loyal troopers from the Traditionalist Generation (born before 1945),
    • the Boomers have been change agents, but are starting to think of retirement (those born 1946-1964),
    • The Gen Xers are impatient to get on with the show and back to their lives (those born 1965-1980) and
    • The Gen Yers (born 1980+) are bringing all their techno-savvy into our offices.
    • Just as with cultural differences (i.e. Diversity training), and personality type differences (e.g. Myers Briggs) knowing and understanding the differences in generational background can foster better collaboration.
  • When Generations Collide..
    • AT THE AMERICAN Library Association (ALA) meeting in Toronto, a telling generational shift was apparent--under the table.
    • The elegant Traditionalist librarian introducing the speakers wore a skirt, heels, and pantyhose.
    • The Baby Boomer speaker wore a pantsuit, sandals, and no stockings.
    • The Generation X librarian who participated in the panel discussion wore a short skirt and (horrors) flip-flops!
    • Extract from article The Click and Clash of Generations By Lynne C. Lancaster. Boomer Lynne C. Lancaster is cofounder with Gen Xer David Stillman ofBridgeWorks, a consulting firm (< > ). They co wrote When Generations Collide: Who They Are. Why They Clash. How To Solve the Generational Puzzle at Work (HarperBusiness, 2002), which documents the Generations T survey mentioned here
    Kabooma generational collision at its finest!
  • Defining Generation types Source: Ron Zemke, Claire Raines, Bob Filipzcak, Generations at Work, Managing the Clash of Veterans, Boomers, Xers,and nexters in Your Workplace, American Management Association, 2000 p.24 with modification to age brackets Note: We must stay away from generalizing and stereotyping and realize that these are just guidelines which may help shed some light on different people's perspectives. Computers Schoolyard violence Oklahoma city bombing It Takes a Village TV talk shows Multiculturalism Girls Movement McGwire and Sosa Internet, mobile phones, and instant messaging Watergate, Nixon resigns Latchkey kids Stagflation Single-parent homes MTV AIDS Computers Challenger disaster Fall of Berlin Wall Wall Street frenzy Persian Gulf Glasnost, Perestroika Prosperity Children in the spotlight Television Suburbia Assassinations Vietnam Civil Rights movement Cold War Womens Liberation The Space Race Patriotism Families The Great Depression WW II New Deal Korean War Golden Age of Radio Silver Screen Rise of labor unions Defining Events and Trends 1980-2000 1960-1980 1943-1960 1922-1943 Approx . Birth Years Gen Yers Gen Xers Baby Boomers Traditionalists
  • The way they see the world Ron Zemke, Claire Raines, Bob Filipzcak, Generations at Work, Managing the Clash of Veterans, Boomers, Xers,and nexters in Your Workplace , 2000, American Management Association, Page 155 Promiscuity Clich, hype Political incorrectness Vulgarity Turnoffs Inclusive Reluctant to commit Personal gratification Personal sacrifice Relationships Pulling together Competence Consensus Hierarchy Leadership bycomm1unity Polite Unimpressed Love/hate Respectful View of Authority Determined Balanced Driven Dedicated Work Ethic Hopeful Skeptical Optimistic Practical Outlook 1980-2000 1960-1980 1943-1960 1922-1942 Birth period:>> Yers Xers Boomers Traditionalists
  • Work Styles Source: n-gen People Performance Inc. Clashpoints around Careers Traditionalists: Build a legacy Boomers: Build a stellar career Xers: Build a portable career Yers: Build parallel careers
    • Fluid work style
    • Change = Improvement
    • Informal work style
    • Change = potential opportunity
    • Structured work style
    • Change = caution
    • Linear work style
    • Change = Somethings wrong
    Gen Ys Gen Xers Boomers Traditionalist
  • Work Ethics are Impacted by Generational Values
    • Gen Yers in the Workplace
    • Value Authenticity and Autonomy
    • Digital natives
    • Multi-taskers
    • Collectivism is power
    • Fewer gender or ethnicity issues
    • Well educated
    • Xers in the Workplace
    • Value Pragmatism, Being Savvy
    • Independent
    • Entrepreneurial
    • Flexible and adaptable
    • Outcome oriented
    • Im having a life right now!
    • Boomers in the Workplace
    • Value Individuality and Tolerance
    • Change agents
    • Drive to compete and excel
    • Relationship oriented
    • Hard work = Badge of Honor
    • Searching their souls
    • Traditionalist s in the Workplace
    • Value Duty, Tradition, and Loyalty
    • Disciplined and committed
    • Civic Minded
    • Willing to reinvent themselves
    • Demand Courtesy
  • Each generation in the workplace comes with its own sets of experiences and expectations that can occasionally come in conflict with one another Source: Lynne C. Lancaster and David Stillman. When Generations Collide: Who They Are. Why They Clash. How To Solve the Generational Puzzle at Work (HarperBusiness, 2002) Part of my daily routine Necessary Sets me back Sets me back Job changing Unfathomable if not provided Unable to work without it Unsure Uncomfortable Technology use On demand Weekly/Daily Once per year No news is good news Feedback Partner Coach Get out of the way Command & control Leadership style Team decided Team included Team informed Seeks approval Decision-making Collaborative Independent Horizontal Hierarchical Problem-solving Collaborative Hub & Spoke Guarded Top down Communications style Collaborative & networked Independent Facilitated Classroom Learning style Continuous and expected Required to keep me Too much and Ill leave The hard way Training Gen Yers Gen X Boomer Traditionalist
  • Lots of data are being gathered that point to differences in generational preferences
    • "Working--Face Time Hudson, the staffing firm, has identified another difference between the generations. Gen Xers and Gen Yers need more hand holding or face time with their bosses than baby boomers or those over age 60.
    • One fourth of Gen Xers and Gen Yers want feedback from the boss at least once a week, compared with one-fifth of boomers and one in ten of those over age 60. Younger workers are also more likely to want a connection to the top brass and to socialize with their managers.
    • (The Washington Post, 26-Oct-2006, p. D2)
    • This report provides Hewitt's summaries of human resources news that appeared in The New York Times , The Wall Street Journal , and The Washington Post . Our intent is to capture the key HR messages, perspective, and tone of each article, without addi