How to Manage a Multi-Generational Workforce

For what seems to be the first time in our country’s history, there are multiple generations not only at work together, but working alongside each other. From law offices to creative teams, startup companies to financial institutions, four separate generations of Americans are burning the same midnight oil and the traditional work dynamic has evolved altogether.

This is why having a business owner’s policy (BOP) in place is a good thing, so you can be protected against the various liability claims that could come with hiring a multi-generational staff. But it’s also good to know how to manage a multi-generational cast of workers by understanding them in order to help them be more productive an bring a positive environment to your place of business.

Address Tension

With a wide age range now becoming the norm in most workplaces, there are different attitudes, different operating procedures, and different ways of handling tasks. All this mixed together can create tension between younger and older generations who just do things differently and have different expectations.

Instead of focusing on the negatives and the things working against having a generation gap in one office space, business owners and leaders should create learning and bonding opportunities for those with varying ages. Why not create situations where someone can learn something new (especially in today’s fast-moving digital environment) from a younger and trend-friendly worker? Or why not have deep dive sessions where older employees can provide experienced input as to how to look at a certain situation? Creating discussion and camaraderie should be the focus of any workspace.

Don’t Bring Up Labels

It’s easy to see age differences and put people from different generations in a box, but it’s best to stop that right in its tracks. The goal of management should be about working with individuals and not groups, and not about individual ages. This will encourage a movement away from focusing on age as it relates to productivity and focus.

Look For Commonalities

Supervisors and leaders should encourage all employees to find commonalities and embrace what they share. This will encourage togetherness and possibly create friendships or friendly work environments in the process. Finding commonalities supports the idea of trust among generations and opens conversations.

Informal Mentoring Opportunities

As mentioned above, there are active moments where workers who are decades apart from each other can teach other innovative or established ways to handle tasks. Have Generation Z staff (essentially college interns) share how they can use social media or analytics to bolster results or have those born a few decades before share how they process certain requests or handle operations. This will provide insight and even create bridges between the ages.

About Walker & Associates

If you’re in the market for a new insurance partner, do your homework to ensure a lucrative venture and positive relationship. Contact us online at Walker & Associates Insurance or by phone at (800) 213-7126 for your insurance needs. We can explain your coverage options and how much coverage will cost.