Yes, different generations have different working styles.
Nothing like a good set of stereotypes to build walls in companies, is there?
A recent AP article by Matt Sedensky focuses on “training” by “experts” that bridges the gap all the way from the “Silent Generation” to the latest unnamed, and as yet, un-pigeon-holed generation.
“Employees are taught about the characteristics that define each generation, from their core values to their childhood and adolescent experiences to the type of figures they regard as heroes. Then workshop leaders typically drill down into how those attributes play into the strengths and weaknesses each age group offers on the job.”
Nothing breaks down barriers like sitting in a classroom behind tables set in rows while someone lectures you on stereotypes. (This was sarcasm.)
Maybe we should try experiential learning that shows you who the actual people you work with are, what they care about and how they communicate best. We call it Applied Improvisation.
Improvisation brings a mindset that everyone can use, from the “Silent Generation” to teens – even pre-teens.
We need to be learning new tools, and learning about the people we work with, not the generalizations that someone drilled out of research or popular culture. Let’s go!
Patrick Short thinks his 94 year-old mother is part of the “Greatest Generation”, because there is no way she’s part of a “Silent Generation”.