How To Manage Multi-Generational Teams
Different generations communicate differently and are motivated by different managing techniques. This makes it sometimes hard making sure that everyone has the same uniform level of understanding and commitment. Bear in mind different generations have different perspectives and come from different angles!
You need to be on your mettle and you need to show reserves of patience, balance, and careful observation of all of the team.
Try the following pointers to drive forward with your multi-generational team.
- Create a collaborative environment.
In a mixed generation working environment, it’s important that all employees feel comfortable around each other and can benefit from each other. Create mixed shifts or teams in which younger employees can look to older ones for wisdom and guidance, and older generations can look to younger ones for fresh perspectives and innovative solutions. Allow older workers to mentor or train in new, younger employees to begin the collaboration from the beginning, and give younger generation employees the opportunity to share their expertise with the older generation as well.
- Understand the different needs of each generation.
Typically younger generations are more attracted to a learning environment that features a range of interactive technology and adapt better to technology-integrated systems. Older generations tend to prefer handbooks and more traditional forms of training. Younger generations have high expectations and like to hear frequent (positive) feedback about their progress. This generation enjoys special assignments and responsibilities such as taking over social media duties or organizing store displays. Older generations appreciate traditional hierarchy and status within a company, and may appreciate being placed as shift managers or team leads.
- Be aware of the danger of stereotypes.
Never make the assumption that each employee of the same generation will act in the same way or have the same sorts of difficulties and needs. We are all individuals! Make sure that you deal with each person on their own merits and watch very closely to see how each employee thrives in their position.
4.Practice good communication.
Each generation has a different set of values and work ethics that may not translate well between generations. This might result in miscommunication and confusion in the workplace, so it’s important that all employees understand that open communication is very important in your workplace, and that if anyone is uncomfortable with any aspect of their work environment, they should come to you to discuss the situation. Use a variety of communication methods to appeal to each generation but which also delivers good outcomes and quality.
5.Know what motivates each team member.
“Hard work” means something different for different generations. Some believe that hard work is the number of hours put in (more equals better), others believe that hard work is getting the work done in as short of time as possible. Some people need instant gratification, others are happy for recognition at any time.
How do you handle the generational differences among your employees?
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