Wednesday, October 26, 2011
Gen Xers grew up in a time of economic insecurity, corporate layoffs and downsizing. They saw the fall of the Berlin Wall, the hostage crisis in Iran, the Gulf War and the rise of AIDS. They were often called the MTV Generation. They played Atari and were the first to move from typewriters to computers.
Gen X children were also the first generation to see the divorce of their own parents or their friends’ parents. Gen Xers are the first generation to be independent from a young age, often due to living in a single parent household or having two working parents.
As a result of their experience growing up, Gen Xers are independent in the workplace as well. While they are committed to doing a great job at work, they do not want to be micromanaged. They are creative yet strategic thinkers. They are more informal, more flexible and more computer savvy than the generations before them. Gen Xers are used to change so they tend to embrace it more easily.
Here are a few tips for communicating with Gen X:
• Be direct and straightforward:
• Show respect for their time; avoid too much small talk
• When presenting, start with the bottom line
• Tell them upfront what you need or expect from them
• Do your homework and be prepared to be challenged
• Determine the next steps prior to the meeting’s conclusion
• Ask for their preference on moving forward
Once Gen Xers understand the need for change and the reason behind it, they will be your number one driver of that change and be a prime resource in overcoming obstacles along the way.
Gen Xers have several strengths they can offer in today’s workplace. Show them they are respected and valued.
Wednesday, October 19, 2011
The Baby Boomer generation grew up in the middle of the Civil Rights movement, Woodstock and the Vietnam War. They saw the assassination of Martin Luther King Jr. and President John F. Kennedy.
Baby Boomers have a strong work ethic, valuing both loyalty and dedication to their employer. However, Boomers are more likely than the Traditionalist generation before them to question authority or even to rebel against it if they feel a change is necessary.
The Boomer generation saw women entering the workforce, mostly in traditional jobs which allowed them to continue in their role of caring for the household.
In the workforce, Boomers are team players, relationship-driven and customer-focused. Because they are collaborative by nature, other generations might assume that Boomers drag their feet or have difficulty making independent decisions. However, Boomers just want to know all sides of the story and gather support before coming to a conclusion.
Here are some tips when communicating with Baby Boomers:
• Make presentations conversational rather than a lecture
• Link your service to the business mission and its impact on people
• Allow plenty of time for discussion and questions
• Solicit their input, ask for their opinions and suggestions
• Use phone or email to set up meetings and to follow up
Baby Boomers want the opportunity to study all the facts ahead of changes in the workplace in order to garner their wholehearted support. A collaborative approach will help them work together to accomplish a common goal.
Baby Boomers have several strengths they can offer in today’s workplace. Show them they are respected and valued.
Wednesday, October 12, 2011
In the Traditionalist generation, men were typically the breadwinners while women generally stayed home to take care of the house and children. As a result of the happenings around them, Traditionalists developed a strong work ethic, a conservative outlook on life, a high respect for authority and a strong sense of duty and loyalty.
It should come as no surprise then that given the times and the values with which Traditionalists were raised, in the workforce they value a hierarchical structure, a clearly-defined chain of command and a formal work culture.
The younger generations sometimes view Traditionalists as inflexible. Yet Traditionalists often make great mentors because of their loyalty and their experience. Traditionalists bring time-tested principles to the table and can show the team how they apply in the current circumstances. Traditionalists are also data and detail oriented, methodical in their approach to attend to the details.
Here are a few tips for communicating with a Traditionalist:
• Be prepared and well organized
• Ask how they would prefer you follow-up after a meeting
• Send them handwritten notes
• Keep presentations more formal, limiting flash and music
• Avoid acronyms, slang and foul language
Remember that Traditionalists like to examine the facts for themselves and understand each line of reasoning in order to achieve the best results.
Traditionalists have several strengths they can offer in today’s workplace. Show them they are respected and valued.
Wednesday, October 05, 2011
1. Be passionate. Your staff will always take their cues from you. If you are excited and enthusiastic, you will inspire your team to feel the same way. Always remember that as the leader you set the standard.
2. Keep their eyes on the prize. Clearly state and then reiterate the results you anticipate from your staff to consistently keep them motivated. Leverage each person’s strengths whenever possible.
3. Encourage a proper perspective. Celebrate small victories along the way while keeping them focused on the finish line. Always assume good intent and use verbal recognition to show your respect.
4. Build momentum for change when it is necessary. It’s easy to start strong and then start to see enthusiasm wane. To counter this, put a plan in place to realize the changes you want made and keep pushing each new phase forward to build and maintain momentum.
5. Match your walk to your talk. Too many times, companies declare a need for change but then take no active role in making it happen. Provide your staff with time, resources and feedback. Be fully committed. Be willing to learn and grow through the change.
6. Demonstrate respect for your staff. At our very core, we all want respect. Show your team that they are needed and valued. Solicit their input. Express to them that their concerns are heard and their recommendations welcome.
In the business world we live in today, employees are placing high demands on companies, particularly on leaders. As you implement these tips take notice of how productivity, retention, performance, teamwork and communication all dramatically improve.
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- Let's Talk, Really Talk
- Are You Ready for Performance Reviews?
- The Importance of Trust on Teams
- Reduce Back-to-School Stress: 5 Quick Tips
- Celebrate Differences in the Workplace
- Leading with Empathy
- Finding Strengths in Others
- What Every Person Wants: RESPECT
- Managing Gen Y Interns: Five Helpful Tips
- Baby Boomers (3)
- Business Issues (12)
- Communication (19)
- Employment (11)
- flexible work arrangements (2)
- Generation X (3)
- Generation Y (3)
- Generations (12)
- Job Hunting (1)
- Leadership (12)
- Manager Tips (16)
- Performance (5)
- Performance Reviews (3)
- Reduce Stress (2)
- Teamwork (3)
- Traditionalists (3)
- Women (1)
K HR Solutions President Kim Huggins helps transform individuals and corporate work groups into effective leaders and results-oriented teams. Kim’s thought-provoking services and programs are custom-designed to meet your needs. Kim is also a nationally recognized trainer and speaker on the topic of Understanding Generations.