After you go through this definition – have them do worksheet that has them guess at defining events
My son was born in September 1990. The Berlin Wall was already down. It was something that existed when I was in high school. When he was in high school it was ancient history.
COMMUNICATING ACROSS THE GENERATIONS Presented by Teri Zuege-Halvorsen, MS Assistant Professor Family Living Educator UW-Cooperative Extension
Program Outline Introduction and Overview Background of the Generations How Do Generational Differences Affect You? Communicating Across the Generations
Workshop Goals Increase knowledge and understanding of the four generations Enhance comprehension of how generational differences affect working styles Promote skills for effective intergenerational communication
Generational Diversity Generational differences represent a critical aspect to workplace diversity. How you view generational differences is based on your generational perspective.
Are you a mature, one of the many loyal “company people” most comfortable with a top-down management approach?Do you work for a driven and dedicated Baby Boomer willing to work late to prove themselves? Do you have team members who are GenX’ers, most comfortable with casual dress and flexible hours, resentful of traditional power and politics? Is your organization prepared to recruit and retain Gen Y’s, a group of idealistic, multi- tasking web-surfers?
The Matures Born between 1925-1945 Almost 6% of them are still in the workforce, although many are part- time Also known as the: veterans, seniors, traditionalists, silent generation
The Baby Boomers Born between 1945-1963 or (1940 – 1960) Over 72 million strong Also known as: Boomers
The Generation X’ers Born between 1964-1980 58 Million Also known as: X’ers, Baby Busters, Post-Boomers,
The Generation Y’s Born between 1981 and 2000 80 Million Strong Also known as the: millennials, nexters, Nintendo Generation, Internet Generation
Cuspers those born close to the dividing linebetween two generations. Are often able to straddle both generational definingmoments/signposts. Sometimes identify with one or the other
Matures: Defining Events The Great Depression & Dust Bowl The New Deal Social Security Established Golden Age of Radio Pearl Harbor Attacked WW II and Korean War Rise of Labor Unions
Boomers: Defining Events Economic Prosperity Bay of Pigs Expansion of Suburbia Focus on Children Television/Rock & Roll Vietnam Assassinations Civil Rights Movement Cold War/McCarthy Hearings Space Race/Moon Landing
Generational Descriptors Matures Boomers Gen X’ers Gen Y’sDefining Duty/ Individuality Diversity/ Optimismidea… Sacrifice /Work Independence CollaborateSuccess Fought Born and Have two jobs Tenacitybecause hard & should won have itStyle… Team Self- Entrepreneur Team player absorbed playerLeisure Reward The point of Relief Part of lifeis… for hard life work
Generational Descriptors Matures Boomers Gen X’ers Gen Y’sEducation A dream A birthright A way to get Life-longis… aheadSurprises in Some All good Avoid them – Can belife are… good, they are good some bad usually badFuture is… Rainy day Now is Uncertain, Can be to work for more but planned important manageable forManaging Save Spend Hedge Spendmoney… parent’s $
Generational Descriptors Matures Boomers Gen Gen Y’s XersProgram Social Cult Software Sophisticatedmeans… program deprogrammers softwareThey Victory Youth Savvy Knowledgecelebrate…The Mom and Mom and Dad Mom or Mom or Dadfamily… Dad Dad Grandpa, Grandma
Generational Descriptors Matures Boomers Gen X’ers Gen Y’sSex… On your In your car Over the Back to honeymoon Internet basicsThe phone Rotary Touch tone Cellular Wireless/is… TextingTechnology Slide rules Calculators Spreadsheets Game Systems Source: Rocking the Ages, Smith, J. Walker and Ann Clurman
Generational Clash in the Workplace Worldwide economy Rapid change in the workplace Mergers, acquisitions, consolidations - Downsizing of organizations - Elimination of middle management Less union activity/changes in public unions - Seniority is only one element of promotion Technology
The Result: No job is safe, and no career assured. Causes employees to identify more with their generation and blame other generations for workplace problems and issues. The real generational workplace conflict is based on differences in values, ambitions, views, and mindsets.
Mature Values Dedication/sacrifice Patience Law and order Delayed reward Strong work ethic Duty, honor, country Risk averse Loyalty to the Respect for organization authority
Boomer Values Optimism Promotion and Team work recognition Personal Youth gratification Work Health and wellness Volunteerism
Gen X Values Diversity Fun Thinking globally Informality Balance in life Independence Computer literacy Initiative Personal development
Gen Y Values Optimism Education Civic duty Idealism Confidence Fun Ambition/ Diversity achievement Personal Tradition development
Matures at Work Assets Limitations Stable Uncomfortable with Detail oriented ambiguity and change Work experience Reluctant to buck the Loyal system Customer service Uncomfortable with conflict “We’ve always done it that way” response
Boomers at Work Assets Limitations Service oriented Not naturally “budget Driven/dedicated minded” Willing to “go the Uncomfortable with extra mile” conflict Good at Put process ahead of relationships results Want to please Sensitive to feedback Good team Judgmental of those who players see things differently
Gen X’ers at Work Assets Limitations Adaptable/flexible Impatient Techno-literate May have poorer Independent people skills Not intimidated by Not as much authority experience Creative Skeptical, some are cynical
Gen Y’s at Work Assets Limitations Loyalty Need for supervision and structure Optimism tempered with realism Inexperience, particularly with Tolerant handling different Multi-tasking people issues Technological savvy Customer service levels are low
Matures: Training & Development Training Developing Take plenty of time Technology Give them the “big Don’t stereotype as picture” technophobes Share the company/ Use formality and organizational history order Let them share their Don’t rush it experiences
Boomers: Training & Development Training Development Focus on the future Meetings and team building Focus on challenges Provide developmental experiences Focus on their role Use business books and training videos
Gen X’ers: Training & Development Training Development Offer them access to Help them train for computer-based another job information and resources Self-study online courses Provide resource lists Keep materials brief – Focus on balance bullets/checklists Have some fun
Gen Y’s: Training & Development Development Training Take plenty of time Focus on customer service and Model the behavior interpersonal skills you want to see Provide a mentor; Communicate preferably a mature expectations Large teams with Have some fun strong leadership
Messages that Motivate Matures “Your experience is respected here.” “It’s important for the rest of us to hear what has, and hasn’t, worked in the past.” “Your perseverance is valued and will be rewarded.”
Messages that Motivate Boomers “You are important to our success.” “Your unique contributions will be recognized and rewarded.” “What is your vision for this project?”
Messages that Motivate Gen X’ers “Do it your way.” “We’ve got the newest technology and a lot of professional development.” “There aren’t a lot of rules here.” “We’re not very corporate/rigid.”
Messages that Motivate Gen Y’s “We provide equal opportunities here.” “Your mentor is in his/her sixties.” “You are making a positive difference to our company.” “You handled that situation well.”
Communication: Levels of Response Level 1 Acknowledge and let it go. Level 2 Change your behavior. Level 3 Use a generational template to talk it over. Source:The Xers & The Boomers, Claire Raines, Jim Hunt
Acknowledge and let it go Learn to “pick your battles” Acknowledge that generational differences exist Identify the generational factor involved with a co-workers behavior or response Let your annoyance go and move on
Change your behavior React by altering your response based on the generational principles you have learned Make a conscious decision as to what you are going to say, or not say, what are the most appropriate words to use in your response, what is the most appropriate way to respond
Use a generational template All involved recognize and acknowledge that each generation has a preferred communication style. They go a step further and discuss how these preferences are affecting their situation. They come to a mutual agreement about more effective ways to communicate with each other.
USING THE ABC APPROACH Accommodate differences Be flexible Create an atmosphere of trust
ACCOMMODATE DIFFERENCES A diversity of perspectives enriches an organization Understand and appreciate generational differences Recognize and reward in ways appropriate to generationally diverse needs and desires
BE FLEXIBLE Step “out of the box” Focus on the end result rather than the process Stay open to all possibilities
CREATE AN ATMOSPHERE OF TRUST DO NOT micromanage! Involve staff and volunteers in planning and decision making Provide clear, specific goals, the resources need and then step out of the way!