Don't Mind the (Generational) Gap
It seems everywhere you look there’s a new article being published on how to manage different generations in the workplace. This shouldn’t come as a surprise as we’ve reached an age where five generations are working alongside one another for the first time in history. While it’s important to be aware of the characteristics that define each of these generational groups, managers shouldn’t rely solely on these blanket stereotypes.
We’ve all heard the saying “one size doesn’t fit all,” and it couldn’t be more true in the world of management. Being able to effectively customize management to the needs of each employee is one of the greatest challenges as a manager. Using wide-ranging workplace trends, such as generational differences, to help guide your management approach can be useful, but the most effective managers are the ones that tailor their approach to each individual’s strengths, motivators and needs.
Here are some things to keep in mind when managing a group of individuals, regardless of age:
- Ask your employees what they want out of their professional lives; don’t make assumptions.
- Just because an employee is nearing retirement age, it doesn’t necessarily mean they aren’t looking to further advance in their career.
- Know what motivates each of your employees.
- One person might be motivated by money while another might be motivated by professional development; not everyone’s motivators are the same.
- Conduct anonymous pulse check surveys to stay on top of your workforce’s demographics and needs.
- Pulse check surveys can be a useful tool to uncover information regarding your employee base and their satisfaction levels.
- Focus on the results and be open to new ways of achieving those results.
- Offer different working options, such as telecommuting or working offsite.
- Encourage employees of all ages and experience levels to share their opinions.
- Everyone has their own unique perspective and ideas to share regardless of age and number of years in the workplace.
- Accommodate and respect differences in learning between employees.
- Some individuals are visual learners and others are hands-on learners; accommodate different learning needs when possible.
For help with managing your multi-generational workforce, contact an Assurance representative today.
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