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Generational Differences in the Workplace

Paper type: Essay
Pages: 4 (917 words)
Categories: Work
Downloads: 42
Views: 358


This short article tries to explain the different age groups composing each of the classifications of generations in the current U.S. workforce and their distinguishing characteristics. The piece likewise seeks to examine how each group’s varying traits might impact an organization. The primary purpose of the paper is to teach management how recognizing these varying views might assist them to better inspire and satisfy the members of each group.


So who are these different generational groups? The author has actually broken today’s labor force down into 3 recognizable groups by birth year.

These groups are Child Boomers, Generation X, and Generation Y. They will be described in more detail in the following paragraphs.

The first, and earliest group, are the Infant Boomers. This category consists of those born between the years of 1946 to 1964. The Baby Boomers are the biggest group and a lot of them can be found throughout the managerial ranks. They are deemed to be egotistical and have a sensation of entitlement.

This group is stated to worth success, team effort, addition, and rule-challenging. They are open to change and loyal to their employer.

Generation X is consisted of those born in between 1965 and 1979. This group is worried about profession options and a balance of work and house life. They look for satisfying work but are negative of corporations and government. This cynicism leads themnto being less faithful than their predecessors (the Baby Boomers). Generation Xers are computer literate and demand satisfying work while still craving an enjoyable work environment.

The 3rd group is Generation Y. This consists of those born from 1980 to present (per reports made in 2005 and 2006). According to the author this group is optimistic however reasonable, worldwide mindful, and inclusive. They are really technologically inclined and diverse in their mindset. They yearn for a work/family balance and independence though they need feedback from their company. They are likewise curious and results oriented. This generation can become disenchanted with provided with entry level jobs for they seek difficulties.


The author used a number of other studies to reach his conclusions. The Rokeach Value Survey (RVS) seems to have been the main instrument in gathering information. This study allows participants to rank the measures they find most valuable.


In the “Implications for Managers” section of the paper, the author makes suggestions for how a manager should treat each class. He has used the research to draw his conclusions. His suggestions seem based on the traits and behaviors each group tends to exhibit. For the Baby Boomers he states that they can be motivated with money, overtime, praise, and position. He enforces the idea that this generation is loyal. For Generation X he suggests making work fun and meaningful. He also thinks lending an understanding ear to this group could be helpful. Generation Y needs exciting and relevant work, says the author. Make sure they have opportunity for career advancement. Also a manger should be mindful of their need for feedback.


The main idea of this article is that the difference in values and beliefs of each generation can have an impact on the job. Understanding these differences and how to make the most of them is key to satisfying and motivating each group. The paper seeks to explain these differences, why they tend to occur, and how to use those differences to the employer’s advantage.


One main drawback to the ideas set forth in this article is assuming everyone in each generation holds the same values and beliefs. In this vain, managers may be able to cater to a large majority of employees but can miss satisfying the wants and needs of certain individuals. Although the research may encapsulate certain behaviors and traits of most of the people, there will be variables that it does not take into account.


The author’s conclusions may serve managers well. His conclusions based on the research and following suggestions seem to be based in logic and geared toward getting the most out of and retaining employees. It probably does help to understand how best to motivate others if you understand why they feel the way they do. Although generation and age may not be the only mitigating factor in an employee’s attitude, it seems to be a good starting point.


As stated previously, age (date of birth) can not account solely for a person’s values and beliefs. As in anything else, there are always variables that can skew data. Some variables that are not reflected in the data are financial status, marital status, locale, and a wide variety of other things. However, if it is possible to meet the needs of many while only having to concentrate on a few “one-offs” then these recommendations can only serve to ease a manager’s position.


I am probably one of the “one-offs” but I’ve always marched to the beat of a different drummer. I have, however, been witness to many of these stereotypes. I have worked plenty of jobs where the generational differences were quite apparent. Sometimes the “old-timers” actually relish that name and take pride in it. The difference in attitudes and values can be glaring. I defintiely think it is good that there is information out there to help managers understand these differences and help to deal with them.


Generational Differences In The Workplace: Personal Values, Behaviors, And Popular Beliefs. The Clute Institute, 2009. Web. 20 Oct. 2012. .

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Generational Differences in the Workplace. (2016, Dec 14). Retrieved from https://studymoose.com/generational-differences-in-the-workplace-essay

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