The modern workplace is extremely diverse, blending different ethnicities, races, genders, and age groups. The latter group presents some unique challenges for managers, who strive to motivate and inspire people who grew up in different eras, were educated under different circumstances, and developed different skill sets and expectations.
Managing a multigenerational workforce is its own skill set. It’s an important one to hone if a company wants to foster a positive work environment and get the most out of its staff. In this blog, The Protocall Group, an expert staffing agency filling registered nurse jobs in South Jersey and countless other positions in major industries all over the Philadelphia, offers some tips for navigating this landscape.
First, let’s talk about what a multigenerational staff might look like. It’s not uncommon to find an office with employees from as many as four different generations working side by side. While adhering to stereotypes is a bad idea – and we’ll get to that later – in general, the four generations do tend to have their own distinct characteristics.
- Baby Boomers (born between 1946-1964) – Extremely dedicated, reliable workers who tend to be loyal to the company. Job security is a high priority. Prefer phone or in-person communication.
- Generation X (1965-1976) – These workers value flexibility in a schedule so they can balance their home life with their work life. They are independent, adaptable workers who are eager to learn. They understand technology and like to communicate via text or email.
- Generation Y (1977-1995) – Well-educated and socially conscious, these workers aim to do work that really matters to the world. They are very technologically savvy and reliant on the internet for most of their communication and interaction.
- Generation Z (1996-2012) – Because they were born and raised in the digital age, these workers not only understand technology, they know how to use it in innovative ways to communicate and simplify their lives. They think out of the box and tend to carry the spirit of entrepreneurship.
While all individuals are different, having a basic understanding of where different generations are coming from is one important key to managing a multigenerational workforce. That said, stereotyping your employees based on age is not only unfair, it could put you in danger of violating federal anti-discimination law.
That brings us to our tips for managers leading a staff comprised of different generations:
- Don’t stereotype – Take the time to get to know each employee’s personality, strengths, and weaknesses so you know what motivates them and how to reward or reprimand them effectively.
- Foster connections between employees – Don’t focus on what makes people different. What do they all have in common? Team bonding starts here.
- Encourage learning from each other – Regardless of age, every employee has knowledge and experience they can share that might help coworkers thrive.
- Manage with flexibility – Not everyone responds to the same managerial approach, and that’s another reason why it’s important to get to know each employee and what makes him or her tick.
- Conflict management is a must – With such a diverse blend of backgrounds coming together for a common goal, there are bound to be differences of opinion. Managing these conflicts with objectivity and fairness is crucial.
The Protocall Group cares about helping companies succeed, and that starts with employees working better together. Our expert staffing services can help your business find and recruit the best workers in any age bracket. If you need help filling registered nurse jobs in Philadelphia or staffing any other position throughout the area, give us a call today.