Generational Differences in the Workplace Can be a Valuable Asset

Generational Differences in the Workplace Offer Dynamic Benefits

generational differencesIf you manage a team of any size, you’re likely to run into generational differences in the workplace. When companies let go of generational stereotypes and look at individual strengths and weaknesses, it’s easier to achieve a team-building environment. Take a look at a few of the ways that you can approach generational differences in the workplace to make it an advantage for your team:

Balance the value of experience with innovation. Younger team members often bring a lot of excitement into the mix. They may be using updated technology and have heard the latest ideas in your industry in their undergraduate or graduate degree program. Make the most of these qualities and use it to get an edge on your competition. It can keep your company fresh with innovation.

On the flip side, your more experienced team members offer a unique and hard-earned ability to talk about what’s worked in the past, the “feel” for their job and industry and a demonstrated commitment to working hard. What’s accomplished when these qualities are put together on a team is the ability to be agile and fresh, without losing a sense of who the company is and where it started.

Encourage collaboration and teamwork. When there’s a shared passion for what the team is trying to accomplish, the age differences becomes background noise. When team members are excited about the goal they are going after and are united in their vision for reaching that goal, generational differences are not the main focus. Focus on the objectives and end results, and let the team follow your lead.

It’s also important to foster connections throughout your team on a variety of planes, not just in relation to their ages. You’ll want to use team-building events that help build camaraderie and diminish differences across multiple categories.

Evaluate your employees objectively. Every manager is likely to make a few assumptions, whether it’s based on age or other factors. Utilizing a tool like a behavioral assessment gives you an objective view of your employees. Along the way, you’ll likely notice a few traits that take you by surprise or that uncover leadership skills that you didn’t realize were available.

A behavioral assessment is just one more resource that helps managers dispel the myths around generational differences in the workplace. It’s easy to fall prey to stereotypes, but you don’t have to let them settle and derail your team’s progress.

At PI Consulting Group, we help leadership teams manage generational differences and work them to full advantage. Contact us for more information about The Predictive Index and other resources for optimizing the effectiveness of your team.