The workforce today is filled with various generations; from the older employees who have worked for decades to those that are just entering the workforce. Each generation bring their own talents and attitudes. The working world is fast-paced, increasingly using digital tools and different technologies, plus its more exposed to international influences than ever before. With rising skills shortages in white collar ranks, the need for generations to collaborate and work together is essential.
Valuing the Difference:
Each generation brings a different perspective and it’s important to value the differences and harness their strengths and skills. It’s also important to avoid generation stereotyping.
How can we get intergenerational teams to work?
It all comes down to mentoring and coaching. For the more experienced and senior members of the organization, they should be given mentorship to teach and guide the younger employees. They should be encouraged to pass on their experience and knowledge gained from their career. Older workers can set the example in an organisation, by showing others “how we do things around here”.
Mentorship and coaching works both ways. Where the senior individuals will guide and help the young recruits integrate into the business, the younger generation can help with displaying new and different perspectives and methods that could be considered.
The key is Understanding. It is difficult to come up with an alternate solution or method if one does not understand the overall picture and direction. This goes for both senior and younger individuals. The action plan to help intergenerational teams work is to get them talking with each other and working together. Encourage different generations to collaborate on a project where there needs to be input from all sides. Especially with the world turning towards AI, digital, technology and innovation is crucial to success.
Take Home Message:
The workforce has become filled with diversity in culture and age. The generation gap is larger than ever with different groups being impacted by certain societal events that help shape their perspective and attitudes. Intergenerational teams are an asset to the organization, it is up to how the organization plans to integrate and utilize them. The world is moving towards digital and AI where technology is absolute. By fusing working experience with business process understanding and revolutionary ideas, success is bound to happen.
"Coming together is a beginning. Keeping together is progress. Working together is success." --Henry Ford