As life expectancy and retirement age increase, so does the generation span in the workforce. For this reason, it’s possible you have five generations of employees on your team. Given the diverse age ranges, experiences, and expectations of each generation, it’s your managerial duty to promote harmony, balance, acceptance, and motivation among your workers.
Implement these tips to build bridges among team members of different generations.
Emphasize Each Member’s Strengths
Encourage your team to focus on their strengths and help develop them in others. For instance, baby boomers tend to be highly focused on nonverbal cues during in-person communication. They’re more inclined to use creativity and critical thinking to resolve problems without using technology. Members of Generation X typically are adaptable to a changing workplace. Millennials and Generation Y tend to be technologically savvy. Generation Z often are adept at connecting with the world. Show how sharing strengths can be used to benefit the company as a whole.
Promote Multigenerational Skill Building
Encourage team members to teach new skills to those of another generation. Promoting interaction brings people together to promote bonds. Teaching another person about a hobby or other passion lets teammates get to know each other. They may discover new interests as they keep an open mind to new ideas and possibilities. Emphasizing personal and professional growth translates into stronger camaraderie and collaboration at work.
Focus on All Team Members’ Contributions
Emphasize the importance of each person’s contributions to the team. For instance, let each member take turns leading team projects. This provides room for varying ideas and perspectives to be used to guide others while reaching a common goal. Teammates learn new ways of thinking to improve their performance. Diversity encourages everyone to consistently reexamine facts and remain objective. Be sure everyone’s questions and concerns are addressed so they feel understood and valued.
Understand Recognition and Reward Preferences
Know how each team member prefers to be recognized and rewarded for their hard work. This encourages them to regularly perform their best. For instance, baby boomers typically are driven by retirement plan contributions, bonuses, and salary increases. In contrast, Generation X tends to prefer more paid time off and additional income. Millennials, Generation Y, and Generation Z often prefer additional vacation days, student loan repayment, and childcare reimbursement. Customizing rewards and recognition improves job satisfaction and employee retention.
Hire Multigenerational Workers
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