Millennials, Gen X and Boomers. What Makes Us All Tick in the Workplace?

As a result of people waiting to retire, our workplaces have become more multi-generational than any time in the past. People in their 70’s may be working with or for someone in their 20’s. No wonder everyone is so frustrated at trying to understand what make the other person tick. Now toss in the additional ingredient of technology. Technical savvy threw seniority right out the window in most companies. Surprise! It all gets a little nuts at work. Imagine if we could all figure this out, literally every single base in our business efforts would be covered.

Below are summary findings from several recently released studies on the strengths and weaknesses of Gen Y, Gen X, and Baby Boomers when it comes to the workplace. 

Generation Y / Millennials:

  • No surprise, they are believed to be the most tech-savvy. They are rock stars at social media and know how to apply it to business.
  • They are however the lowest ranking group on being a team player. They prefer to work alone, however this group also needs the most praise to remain motivated.
  • This group struggles with being resourceful.  They are easily frustrated when data or information is not easily obtainable.
  • This generation has a short attention span. Easily bored.
  • They don’t hold much value for networking in person.

Generation X

  • Gen X is the most effective managers compared to other generations.
  • Members of Gen X ranked the highest when it comes to being a revenue generator.
  • They possess traits of adaptability and resourcefulness.
  • They rank lowest compared to other generations when it comes to displaying executive presence. Tend to dress down for work.
  • Values workplace flexibility as the most important benefit of a job and will leave if there is a lack of flexibility. This is valued over money.

Baby Boomers

  • Baby Boomers rank the highest when it comes to being a productive part of a company.
  • They are known to be hard-working.
  • They are the least adaptable and collaborative. Just want to “get it done.”
  • Boomers value benefits, such as retirement, healthcare and training.
  • They dress the best for work. Most likely to dress at an executive level regardless of job level.

Have you worked in a multi-generational workplace? Share your best tips for working together in the comments section!

betsybestheadshot-Betsy McCloskey | Principal/Partner

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