Generation Why? Getting Along in the Workplace

July 12, 2010 | Andy Zimmerman
Generation Why? Getting Along in the Workplace

Slowly, but surely, a large shift is occurring in the American workplace. The young, unpolished but ambitious talent no longer vies for the attention of senior management who hold the power and control in an organization. Now it’s the managers who pop their heads up, eyeing the horizon for the “kids” in the office who come to the rescue of a malfunctioning computer, for example, or explain all this “social networking stuff.”  

There are four distinctly different generations currently occupying the workforce: Gen Y (a.k.a. “Millennials”), Gen X, Baby Boomers, and Traditionalists (born < 1945).  These groups certainly have their fair share of conflict. But can there be a way to leverage our generational differences to create a more productive work environment?

This free presentation from Anne Sandberg of WCOD, Inc. called “Understanding Generational Differences in the Workplace” gives us a pretty good idea of how the characteristics of each generational group came to be and what it all means today.

As the working population continues to saturate itself with Boomers and Xers, the young and talented Millennial population will be in hot demand but short supply. The technology-oriented Gen Y world we live in will soon become a corporate Gen Y world as well. How will the career-oriented Boomers make way for the young population that wants to balance work with life, all the while hoping to be promoted to the top as soon as possible? And how can any cohesion occur if both groups shrug off each other’s abilities?  The presentation above offers some superb insights. I hope you’ll agree.

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