There are generational differences in families.
And there are also generational differences in the workplace. Different generations (Traditionalists, Baby Boomers, Generation X, and Generation Y) exude various qualities and have differing needs in the workplace. Constance Patterson, a Walden University psychology professor, wrote an article in The Diversity Factor entitled “The Impact of Generational Diversity in the Workplace” that provides strategies on ways to work across generations. Patterson includes ten ways to build a strong and effective working environment:
- Leaders should be competent, strong and trustworthy.
- Companies should value differences and promote understanding across different roles.
- Companies should make their internal politics transparent.
- Companies should provide flexibility and support for individual preferences.
- Companies should promote understanding about the different ways people express similar values.
- Companies should bring awareness to the different generational meaning to respect.
- Companies should communicate change clearly and express its impact.
- Companies should provide all generations with opportunities for learning, growth and professional development.
- Companies should provide feedback through coaching and mentoring.
- Companies should foster the concept of community and value to all employees.
Generational differences are beneficial because each generation has different perspectives and experiences that they can share with one another. Each generation has its strengths that can be utilized to benefit the company and its employees.