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Bridging the Generation Gap in the Workplace

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Bridging the Generation Gap in the Workplace

  1. 1. Bridging the Generation Gap in the Workplace Presented by: Michelle Crandall Director of Administrative Services for the City of Dublin Email: [email_address] Sharon Zimmers, Ph.D Director of Ohio North Central Association Commission on School Improvement and Accreditation Email: [email_address]
  2. 2. What Generations Exist in the Workplace <ul><li>Traditionalists </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Born between 1927 - 1945 </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Boomers </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Born between 1946 - 1964 </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Gen Xers </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Born between 1965 - 1981 </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Millennials </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Born between 1982 – Present (?) </li></ul></ul>
  3. 3. What Generations Exist in the Workplace <ul><li>Traditionalists 46.5 Million </li></ul><ul><li>Boomers 79.9 Million </li></ul><ul><li>Gen Xers 58.5 Million </li></ul><ul><li>Millennials 80.0 Million (?) </li></ul>
  4. 4. What Defines a Generation? “ The events and conditions each of us experiences during our formative years determines who we are and how we see the world. As a result of these events and conditions, each generation has adopted its own “generational personality.” - Lynne Lancaster and David Stillman When Generations Collide
  5. 5. What this Means in Our Workplace? Each generation brings its own set of beliefs, values, culture, perspectives, likes, dislikes and skills/traits to the workplace
  6. 6. Why Should We Care? <ul><li>We know these differences impact our employees and the effectiveness and productivity of our businesses </li></ul><ul><li>A great labor shortage is beginning to occur… </li></ul><ul><ul><li>We need to be able to attract and retain the best and brightest of all four generations in order to remain competitive. </li></ul></ul>
  7. 7. Workplace Readiness <ul><li>Sixty percent of the federal government’s workforce is eligible for retirement in the next 10 years. </li></ul><ul><li>Ninety percent of them are senior executives. </li></ul><ul><li>Source: U.S. Office of Personnel Management </li></ul>
  8. 8. Exercise <ul><li>Traditionalists </li></ul><ul><li>Baby Boomers </li></ul><ul><li>Gen Xers </li></ul><ul><li>Millennials </li></ul><ul><li>Issues that defined each generation </li></ul>
  9. 9. Traditionalists Born Between 1927 - 1945 “ The difficult we do at once; the impossible takes a bit longer.” -Motto of the Seabees
  10. 10. Traditionalists Events that Define Them <ul><li>Stock Market Crash </li></ul><ul><li>Great Depression </li></ul><ul><li>FDR and the New Deal </li></ul><ul><li>The Dust Bowl </li></ul><ul><li>Pearl Harbor – enter WWII </li></ul><ul><li>D-day in Normandy </li></ul><ul><li>Korean War </li></ul>
  11. 11. Traditionalists What They Are Rebelling Against <ul><li>Economic and national condition of the country –responsible for responding </li></ul><ul><li>Generation battle cry of: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>“ Bear any burden, pay any price” …and “do it big” </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Re-build the U.S. back into a great country </li></ul></ul>
  12. 12. Traditionalists Their Preferred Work Culture <ul><li>Command and Control Leadership </li></ul><ul><li>Clear Direction </li></ul><ul><li>Clear Roles and Responsibilities </li></ul><ul><li>Security and Stability </li></ul><ul><li>Like Teams </li></ul><ul><li>Work Ethic/Work Focused – “Work is not equal to fun.” </li></ul>
  13. 13. Traditionalists What Other Generations Say About Them <ul><li>Boomers say they are: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Rigid and resistant to change </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Technologically challenged </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Narrow in their view </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Dictatorial </li></ul></ul>
  14. 14. Traditionalists What Other Generations Say About Them <ul><li>Gen Xers say they are: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Set in their ways </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Need to learn how to use e-mail </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The ones with all the money </li></ul></ul>
  15. 15. Traditionalists What Other Generations Say About Them <ul><li>Millennials say they are: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Trustworthy </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Good Leaders </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Brave </li></ul></ul>
  16. 16. Baby Boomers Born Between 1946 and 1964 Those born during or after World War II and raised in the era of extreme optimism, opportunity, and progress
  17. 17. Baby Boomers Events that Define Them <ul><li>Television </li></ul><ul><li>Civil Rights Movement </li></ul><ul><li>Prosperity </li></ul><ul><li>Family Planning </li></ul><ul><li>JFK, MLK and RFK assassinated </li></ul><ul><li>Woodstock </li></ul><ul><li>Vietnam War </li></ul><ul><li>Kent State </li></ul><ul><li>Rock and Roll </li></ul>
  18. 18. Baby Boomers <ul><li>What are they rebelling against? </li></ul><ul><li>Established social norms of the Traditionalist </li></ul><ul><li>Effective due to large number </li></ul>
  19. 19. Baby Boomers Core Values <ul><li>Optimism </li></ul><ul><li>Team orientation </li></ul><ul><li>Personal gratification </li></ul><ul><li>Health and wellness </li></ul><ul><li>Personal growth </li></ul><ul><li>Youth </li></ul><ul><li>Work </li></ul><ul><li>Involvement </li></ul>
  20. 20. Baby Boomers Their Preferred Work Culture <ul><li>Like opportunity and security </li></ul><ul><li>Most like work environments that are democratic </li></ul><ul><li>Advocate teams and team building, consensus and participative management </li></ul><ul><li>Want to prove themselves so they are good at delivering service </li></ul>
  21. 21. Baby Boomers What Other Generations Say About Them <ul><li>Traditionalists say… </li></ul><ul><li>“ They are self-absorbed” </li></ul><ul><li>“ They talk about things they ought to keep private…like intimate details of their personal lives” </li></ul><ul><li>Generations At Work , Zemke, Raines, Filipczak </li></ul>
  22. 22. Baby Boomers What Other Generations Say About Them <ul><li>Gen Xers say… </li></ul><ul><li>“ They are self-righteous.” </li></ul><ul><li>“ They are workaholics.” </li></ul><ul><li>“ They do a great job of talking the talk, but they don’t walk the walk.” </li></ul><ul><li>Generations At Work , Zemke, Raines, Filipczak </li></ul>
  23. 23. Baby Boomers What Other Generations Say About Them <ul><li>Millennials say… </li></ul><ul><li>“ They’re cool. They are up to date on the music we like.” </li></ul><ul><li>“ They work too much.” </li></ul><ul><li>Generations At Work , Zemke, Raines, Filipczak </li></ul>
  24. 24. Gen Xers Born Between 1965 - 1981 A generation born in the shadows of the Boomers
  25. 25. Gen Xers “ It’s no wonder Xers are angst-ridden and rudderless. They feel America’s greatness has passed. They got to the cocktail party twenty minutes too late, and all that’s left are those little wieners and a half-empty bottle of Zima.” Dennis Miller RANTS
  26. 26. Gen Xers Events that Define Them <ul><li>Nixon Resigns </li></ul><ul><li>Energy Crisis </li></ul><ul><li>Divorce Rate + 2 Working Parents </li></ul><ul><li>Technology Revolution </li></ul><ul><li>Stock Market Crash </li></ul><ul><li>Corporate Downsizing </li></ul><ul><li>Fall of Berlin Wall </li></ul><ul><li>Challenger Disaster </li></ul><ul><li>Operation Desert Storm </li></ul><ul><li>Rodney King and L.A. Riots </li></ul>
  27. 27. Gen Xers <ul><li>What are they rebelling against? </li></ul><ul><li>Work/life imbalance of the Boomers </li></ul>
  28. 28. Gen Xers Their Values and Beliefs <ul><li>Self Reliance </li></ul><ul><li>Balance in Life </li></ul><ul><li>Technoliteracy is the answer </li></ul><ul><li>Approach to authority is casual </li></ul><ul><li>Informality – less “corporate” </li></ul><ul><li>Don’t care for politics in the workplace </li></ul><ul><li>Skeptical </li></ul><ul><li>Have fun at work </li></ul>
  29. 29. Gen Xers What Other Generations Say About Them <ul><li>Traditionalists say: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>They don’t respect experience </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>They don’t follow procedures </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>They don’t know what hard work is </li></ul></ul>
  30. 30. Gen Xers What Other Generations Say About Them <ul><li>Boomers say: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>They are slackers </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>They are rude and lack social skills </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>They are always doing things “their own way” </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>They spend too much time on the Internet and e-mail </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>They won’t wait their turn </li></ul></ul>
  31. 31. Gen Xers What Other Generations Say About Them <ul><li>Millennials say: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Cheer up already! </li></ul></ul>
  32. 32. Millennials (also known as Generation Y) Born After 1981 A flip-flop wearing, I-pod toting, multi-tasking generation that is optimistic and ready to change the world and your workplace!
  33. 33. Millennials Events that Define Them <ul><li>Oklahoma City bombing </li></ul><ul><li>School violence </li></ul><ul><li>Technology </li></ul><ul><li>Busy, over planned lives </li></ul><ul><li>Clinton/Lewinsky </li></ul><ul><li>Multiculturalism </li></ul><ul><li>TV talk shows </li></ul><ul><li>September 11th </li></ul>
  34. 34. Millennials What are they rebelling against? <ul><li>Complacency of the Gen Xers </li></ul><ul><li>They are ready to change the world… for the better </li></ul><ul><li>… and they have the numbers to do it </li></ul>
  35. 35. Millennials Core Values <ul><li>Civic Duty </li></ul><ul><li>Achievement – in all aspects of life </li></ul><ul><li>Diversity </li></ul><ul><li>Confidence </li></ul><ul><li>Optimism </li></ul><ul><li>Goal Oriented </li></ul>
  36. 36. The Age of the “Helicopter Parent” <ul><li>Hovers near at all times ready to swoop in and save the child from whatever peril may face him/her </li></ul><ul><li>Wants to contact professors, bosses and HR to correct grades, salaries and working conditions </li></ul>
  37. 37. Millennials - were bombarded with a unique set of compelling messages growing up… <ul><li>Be smart—you are special </li></ul><ul><li>Leave no one behind </li></ul><ul><li>Connect 24/7 </li></ul><ul><li>Achieve now </li></ul><ul><li>Serve your community (Fifty percent of high school students reported volunteering in their communities—On one Roper Survey, Millennials were asked for the major cause of problems in the US, they answered--selfishness </li></ul>
  38. 38. Millennials Their Preferred Work Culture <ul><li>“ Millennials resemble the Traditionalists in many ways—they believe in collective action, optimism about the future, trust in centralized authority, a willingness to get things done, and a heroic spirit in the face of overwhelming odds.” </li></ul><ul><li>Generations At Work , Zemke, Raines, Filipczak </li></ul>
  39. 39. Millennials Their Preferred Work Culture <ul><li>Collaborative </li></ul><ul><li>Diverse and Inclusive </li></ul><ul><li>Goal-oriented </li></ul><ul><li>Sociable </li></ul><ul><li>Civic focused – a company that cares about social and/or environmental issues </li></ul><ul><li>Challenging </li></ul><ul><li>Lots of opportunity to learn and grow </li></ul>
  40. 40. Cone Millennial Cause Study (October 2006) <ul><li>83% will trust a company more if it is socially/environmentally responsible </li></ul><ul><li>79% want to work for a company that cares about how it impacts and contributes to society </li></ul><ul><li>42% who volunteer weekly describe their “ideal” work environment as one that will make the world a better place (outranking all other factors, including high salary) </li></ul>
  41. 41. Workplace Expectations of the Millennial Generation <ul><li>74 percent of employers said these workers expect to be paid well </li></ul><ul><li>61 percent expect to have flexible work schedules </li></ul><ul><li>50 percent expect to have more vacation or personal time </li></ul><ul><li>56 percent expect to be promoted within a year </li></ul>
  42. 42. Managing Millennials – What do They Want From Managers? <ul><li>You be the leader – grew up structured and supervised and are looking for a role model </li></ul><ul><li>Challenge me … or I’ll find someone else who will </li></ul><ul><li>Let me work with my friends </li></ul><ul><li>Let’s have fun! </li></ul><ul><li>Respect me and my ideas </li></ul><ul><li>Be flexible – I have many other parts to my life I need to fit in </li></ul>
  43. 43. Millennials What Other Generations Say About Them <ul><li>Traditionalists say… </li></ul><ul><li>“ They have good manners.” </li></ul><ul><li>“ They’re smart little critters.” </li></ul><ul><li>“ They watch too much TV…with </li></ul><ul><li>crude language and violence.” </li></ul><ul><li>Generations At Work , Zemke, Raines, Filipczak </li></ul>
  44. 44. Millennials What Other Generations Say About Them <ul><li>Boomers say… </li></ul><ul><li>“ They’re cute. </li></ul><ul><li>“ They can set the time on the DVD/VCR.” “They need to learn to entertain themselves; they need too much attention.” </li></ul><ul><li>Generations At Work , Zemke, Raines, Filipczak </li></ul>
  45. 45. Millennials What Other Generations Say About Them <ul><li>Gen Xers say… </li></ul><ul><li>“ Here we go again…another self- absorbed generation of spoiled brats.” </li></ul><ul><li>“ What do you mean, “What’s an album?” </li></ul><ul><li>Generations At Work , Zemke, Raines, Filipczak </li></ul>
  46. 46. Managing the Generational Mix <ul><li>As companies’ cultures evolve with each generation… </li></ul><ul><li>You have the unique challenge to ensure that work teams become and remain culturally and generationally diverse because of the wealth of information and experience that individual team members can offer. </li></ul>
  47. 47. Managing the Generational Mix <ul><li>Organizations that emerge as winners in the battle for talent will have their fingers on the pulse of the newest generation. They’ll design specific techniques for recruiting , managing , motivating , and retaining them. </li></ul>
  48. 48. Attracting, Retaining and Motivating Means… <ul><li>Thinking differently to accommodate differences in perspectives and workplace expectations. </li></ul><ul><li>Flexibility in how we design and implement recognition, feedback, recruitment, orientation, benefits, teams… and on and on. </li></ul><ul><li>“ One size fits all” won’t work if we want our companies to remain employers of choice. </li></ul>
  49. 49. To Sum It All Up
  50. 50. To Sum It All Up
  51. 51. References <ul><li>Generations At Work , Zemke, Raines, Filipczak, 2000 </li></ul><ul><li>When Generations Collide , Lancaster and Stillman, 2002 </li></ul><ul><li>Millennials Rising , Howe, Strauss, 2000 </li></ul><ul><li>Geezers, grungers, gen-Xers and geeks-a look at workplace generational conflict , Tony Diromualdo, 8/14/06 </li></ul>
  52. 52. References <ul><li>The Fourth Turning , Strauss and Howe, 1997 </li></ul><ul><li>How Veterans, Baby boomers, Generation Xers and Generation Nexters Can All Get Along in the Workplace , Zemke, Raines, Filipczak, 2006 </li></ul>
  53. 53. Communicating with Gen X and Millennials (Gen Y) <ul><li>TECHNOLOGY </li></ul><ul><li>Gen X—keep it up to date and motivating. Music at work, BlackBerrys, IM, and fast technology </li></ul><ul><li>Millennials—More comfortable with technology than any other group—learn from them </li></ul>
  54. 54. Communicating with Gen x and Millennials (Gen Y) <ul><li>COMPENSATION </li></ul><ul><li>Gen X—Be willing to negotiate. Gen X has the experience to make them marketable. Consider offering perks like a better title or a flexible work schedule if you can’t budge on compensation </li></ul><ul><li>Millennials—Highlight the importance of building their resume instead of their bank account. An impressive work history can make all the difference in a slumping economy </li></ul>
  55. 55. Communicating with gen X and Millennials (Gen Y) <ul><li>COLLABORATION </li></ul><ul><li>Gen X—Limit in-person meetings. Offer alternatives like conference calls, video and, Web conferencing when collaboration is truly needed. For face to face meetings, stick to small productive groups and skip long planning sessions. </li></ul><ul><li>Millennials—they started online social networks. Think about how you can leverage them in the workplace to encourage team collaboration and knowledge sharing. </li></ul>
  56. 56. Communicating with Gen X and Millennials (Gen Y) <ul><li>ATTIRE </li></ul><ul><li>GenX—Give them a heads up if they should dress nicer for specific meeting or when customers are visiting the office. </li></ul><ul><li>Millennials—They’re new to the job market and might be oblivious to your company’s culture. Let them know dressing better will help defeat “slacker” misconceptions, build credibility with execs, and help their career over the long haul—especially in a weak economy. </li></ul>
  57. 57. Communicating with gen X and Millennials (Gen Y) <ul><li>SOCIALIZING </li></ul><ul><li>Gen X—Invite but don’t push them to participate. They’re used to being overlooked by boomers and tend to dislike corporate politics anyway. </li></ul><ul><li>Millennials—Appeal to their career goals. Millennials are more likely to attend a networking event that will expand their personal contacts. </li></ul>
  58. 58. Communicating with Gen X and Millennials (Gen Y) <ul><li>CORPORATE LOYALTY </li></ul><ul><li>Gen X—Limit bureaucracy. Provide access to information and resources without burdening them with corporate politics and excessive meetings. </li></ul><ul><li>Millennials—Don’t discount them because of their age. Despite the weakening economy, Millennials tend to job-hop—especially if they think they’re being judged on “seniority” instead of “quality.” </li></ul>