Embracing Generational Diversity: Leveraging a Diverse Workforce For Competitive Advantage
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The DCA held their Success Strategies Seminar Series this year on April 9th. They took generational diversity as the topic. The event featured 3 panel members. Though only one panelist identified herself as part of a particular generation, it didn’t impact the overriding message, the audience didn’t need to know the ages of the speakers to understand the value of their opinions.
The overwhelming message from the panelists was that if you (each reader) belong to, for example, the Baby Boomer (born between 1944 and 1962) group you should tap into the strengths of your Generation-X team members (born between 1963 and 1981) when you need work that required a high level of self-sufficient decision making or troubleshooting. If you need a devil’s advocate, seek out a Gen-X for that role.
On the other hand, looking for someone with a propensity for team building? Millennials (born between 1982 and 2000) are identified with being hyper-collaborative (social media, crowd-sourcing, etc.). Like Millennials, optimistic Boomers are also known to be team players – these two groups can work well together on projects that require a lot of collaboration.
Of course these are broad generalizations and should not convey that these are skills exclusive to the generational group with which they are attributed. However, they can give us perspective about our differences, which can be our strengths when used and viewed properly. They can cause us to see things differently, to interpret messages differently, and to perceive results differently.
So when a Traditionalist (born between 1925 and 1943) wants to tell you a story about some of their life experiences, they may be expressing the same sentiment that a Gen-X devil’s advocate is expressing, just in their own, unique, generational style. If you understand each generation’s growing pains and celebrations, it is easier to understand and appreciate the belief systems that are most prevalent in those that lived through it – it is also easier to value the personality traits that are most prominent in that group.
If you are interested in viewing DCA’s Webinars of the Generational Diversity Event, visit:
Panelist Discussion: “Tips & Tools for Creating Inter-Generational Collaboration & Communication”
Keynote Speaker: Annika Hylmo, Ph. D.: “Embracing & Leveraging Generational Diversity”
You can also view past DCA webinars.