There have potentially never been a time when the generational gap between older and younger people has been starker. Whatever personal and political views are held outside of the workplace, they shouldn’t be allowed to create a divide inside of it which can have a detrimental effect on the business.
As a manager or business owner, it is your responsibility to ensure that all members of the team are on the same page and can work effectively and efficiently together. Conflict and the odd disagreement are natural in the workplace – not everyone is going to get along, but a certain amount of professionalism should be expected. So how do you go about bridging the generational gap, so as members of staff at opposite ends of their careers can combine experience and fresh new ideas?
When you are the manager of a team of varying ages, you will likely be presented with a variety of viewpoints, which, ultimately, stem from the generation in which they are from. The opinion of how any project should be approached might be different from one age group to another.
For example, Baby Boomers, that prefer to either speak to someone on the phone or face-to-face, may prefer more of a direct approach. However, they aren’t as likely to be comfortable with the use of technology as Millennials are, who remain connected with friends online through various social media platforms. As a manager, bringing together separate views and skill sets is an art that can benefit the business.
Don’t allow for one viewpoint to dominate the other. The older generation may be staunch in their beliefs, adding that their years of experience makes them best placed to give a considered response, while the younger members of staff may well be brass and exude confidence that they can change the game.
For many employees, news of a team-building day will be the cause for many a sigh and a moan in the office. If this is the case, that’s only because the events they have taken part in before were either not very well delivered or didn’t appeal to what is important to them. Done right, a team-building event is just simply an event where colleagues can let their hair down and have some fun.
Wherever in the world, your business is based, whether it’s in New York City, Madrid or Glasgow, fun corporate team building activities can help bring together colleagues that wouldn’t be likely to socialize outside of the workplace.
While the global political landscape is somewhat fractious right now, allowing your colleagues to have fun and get to know each other away from the usual day-to-day demands will help to form strong bonds that can then be carried over into the workplace.Events and game will also showcase and demonstrate the skills that each generation has to offer, with Baby Boomers seeing first-hand what Millennials can off and vice versa, creating synergy within each department.
When it comes to the differences between older and younger members of staff, one of the hottest topics is equal pay. While there is a valid argument that those with more experience deserve higher pay, that shouldn’t be to the detriment of the younger generation. Make sure that your company offers a fair salary based on job roles, responsibilities and experience to avoid one generation being favored over the other.