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The Intergenerational Workplace. Andrea McGill-O’Rourke, VP of Operations. In this workshop participants will recognize and acknowledge generational differences through the following: Mini Lecture Individual Self Assessment Group Feedback Case Study. ROADMAP.

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the intergenerational workplace

The Intergenerational Workplace

Andrea McGill-O’Rourke, VP of Operations

slide2
In this workshop participants will recognize and acknowledge generational

differences through the following:

  • Mini Lecture
  • Individual Self Assessment
  • Group Feedback
  • Case Study

ROADMAP

slide3
Generational differences can lead to frustration, conflict, and poor morale. According to a survey by Lee Hecht Harrison, more than 60% of employers are experiencing intergenerational differences.
  • However, those very differences can also lead to increased productivity - and ultimately organizational success.

WORKSHOP PERSPECTIVE

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WORKSHOP PERSPECTIVE CONTINUED
  • Robert Tanner, author of Understanding and Managing the Four Generations in the Workplace [2001], recommends that employers view generations as another form of diversity.
  • By understanding the strengths, limitations, and values that each generation brings to the workplace, managers can anticipate miscommunications, avoid lost productivity as a result of conflicts, and minimize employee turnover.
slide5
When we speak about generations…
  • We are making generalizations.
  • There is overlap between generations.
  • We are speaking about the middle of a bell curve.

DISCLAIMERS

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STATISTICS

Percent U.S.

Population

9%

Traditionalists

40%

Baby Boomers

36%

Generation X

16%

Generation Y

slide7
Traditional: The Depression, WWII
  • Baby Boomer: Vietnam War, Civil Rights, assassinations of King and Kennedy, Watergate, Women’s Rights, sexual revolution
  • Gen X: MTV, AIDs, stagnant job market, corporate greed, high divorce and latchkey
  • Gen Y: similar influences of GenX, parental excess, computer

How do you think each of these influences shape their attitudes in the workplace?

INFLUENCES

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HOW AND WHERE DID KENNEDY DIE?
  • Traditional/Boomers
  • Generation X
  • Generation Y

Gunshots in Dallas

Plane crash near Martha’s Vineyard

Kennedy who? The “Dead” Kennedy

slide9
Values
  • Ideas
  • Ways of communicating
  • Ways of getting things done
  • Attitudes toward work

EACH GENERATION BRINGS

slide10
Handout #1 (Self-Assessment)
  • Complete the Self-Assessment.
  • Break into groups- discuss your answers
  • Handout #2 (Categories)
  • Where do you see similarities/differences across the generations?
  • Discuss you’re the findings
  • Return to the larger group with your smaller group’s findings

MULTIGENERATIONAL SELF-ASSESSMENT

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All generations want meaningful work, purpose, making a difference… and compensation that in line with the current marketplace.
  • Workplace culture matters… the highest indicator of satisfaction is to feel valued in your job.

SIMILARITIES

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More than 70% of all employees want to be recognized and appreciated.
  • Career development is a high priority and one that employees generally give

organizations low marks on.

  • Flexibility is important.

SIMILARITIES

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A multigenerational team can:
  • Lead to a positive work environment enhancing recruitment, retention, and profitability
  • Create increased flexibility within employee ranks
  • Make decisions that are stronger because they incorporate multiple and diverse perspectives
  • Increase innovation and creativity
  • Meet the needs of a diverse public

BENEFITS

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Do unto others, keeping their preferences in mind.
  • Meet your clients where they are, regardless of their age.
  • When communicating with an employee of another generation, it’s a matter of recognizing different preferences and interests and adapting to the other person's preferences instead of sticking with one’s own style.
  • Example: A Traditionalist may want a hand written letter
  • A Gen Y might send an email
  • Can you think of other examples?

THE TITANIUM RULE

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TRADITIONALISTS
  • Respectful tone and words, no slang or profanity, language more formal and professional.
  • Messages should relate to company history and long-term goals.
  • Let them know that you value their experience and loyalty to the organization, spend adequate time in orientation and training activities (including the use of technology), and respect common norms of courteous behavior.
slide18
BOOMERS
  • Relational, perhaps over coffee or lunch. Mutual interests, participative (e.g. eliciting input).
  • Link message to the team.
  • Show them how they can be an organizational star, provide them with training and developmental opportunities, and involve them in operational matters.
slide19
GENERATION X
  • Be direct straightforward.
  • Don’t waste their time.
  • State clearly what you want and how it will serve them with a specific timeframe.
  • Partner them with mentors (ideally Boomers) whom they can respect.
  • Do not expect them to give up their life for the job.
  • Promote work/life balance.
  • Refrain from giving them too much extended hands-on supervision.
slide20
GENERATION Y
  • Be positive.
  • Tie goals to personal and team goals.
  • Do not be condescending, avoiding cynicism and sarcasm.
  • Capitalize on their technological skills
  • Provide them with structure, allow them to work in a collaborative manner
  • Be generous with training and orientation activities
slide21
Treat all employees with respect. But recognize that what it means

to treat people respectfully differs across generations.

  • Initiate conversations about generations by getting issues out in the open.
  • Ask people about their needs and preferences and remember to tie them into their values.
  • Don’t project your preferences ontoothers.

RETENTION

slide22
Offer options related to benefits, scheduling, and training opportunities.
  • Personalize your style.
  • Be flexible and creative in how you meet the preferences and expectations of intergenerational employees.
  • Build on the strengths of each generations e.g. wisdom and a fresh set of eyes.
  • Choose mixed generation work teams to work together.

RETENTION

slide23
Learn from each other. Each generation has valuable lessons to teach the next.
  • Example - Your company has a new software program for a piece of equipment:

- A Boomer or Traditionalist employee could conduct the orientation program on

the company’s history that provides a sense of the organization’s mission.

- A Gen X employee could train the staff on how to use it.

- A Gen Y employee could present the project.

RETENTION

slide25
TRADITIONALISTS
  • Loyal employees who often dedicate their lives to one organization
  • Respectful and supportive of organizational hierarchy
  • Strong work ethic
  • Like structure, accept authority, and will work until the job gets done
slide26
BOOMERS
  • Highly optimistic employees who want to excel in their careers
  • Strong work ethic
  • Accepting of authority figures in the workplace
  • Results driven
  • Loyal to the organization
  • Believe that knowledge is power
slide27
GENERATION X
  • Technologically savvy
  • Like informality
  • Lean quickly
  • Believe work-life balance is very important
  • Embrace a diverse workplace
slide28
GENERATION Y
  • Very technologically savvy
  • Value teamwork and personal connection
  • Focused on work-life balance
slide29
GENERATION Y
  • Exceptional multi-taskers who desire a lot of communication and feedback
  • Embrace diversity and value career mobility
  • Don’t see anything wrong with hopping from job to job
  • Life satisfaction is key, and jobs are disposable to them
slide30
Break into groups
  • Read the case
  • Offer suggestions for dealing with the case
  • Put on flip chart
  • Rejoin the larger group

CASE STUDY

slide31
Take the test and find out

DO YOU VALUE MULTIPLE GENERATIONS IN THE WORKPLACE?

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