How to Manage a Multigenerational Workforce

Diversity in the workforce is a challenge practically every employer in a business organization encounters. The degree to which the employee diversity affects the work culture depends on how receptive the employer is towards managing the crew and resolving the internal conflicts.

Today every business organization witness the sequels of employee diversity or workforce diversity. No business comes along with a single aged group of people. The employee longevity is increasing with diminishing birth rates, longer future and better working conditions end resulting in a multigenerational workforce. Today Baby Boomer, Generation X, and Millennial partners are working close by one another in a business organization.

However, this diverse multigenerational workforce, poses several challenges to the HR Managers or employer, as each generation exhibit different work desires and are bound to work alongside each other. The employer or human resource management team is bound to experience clashes/conflicts arising between the younger and older generation of employees on a frequent basis. In that case, it is the efficiency of an employer in proficiently managing the different generations with different backgrounds, cultures, desires and work styles that undermines the business success.

It is extremely important that the Managers equip themselves with a thorough understanding of the demographic- multigenerational working behaviors in order to resolve the conflicts between younger and elder. For a productive and comprehensive working environment, this demographic understanding is adequately demanded by an employer. He should be proficient to deal with different contentions happening between different employee generations.

This blog tales you through different challenges that can come in way of managing a multigenerational workforce in your business. It also discusses the different tactics the employer or HR Manager can undertake while managing the diverse crew.

Challenge 1
Age: The same aged will always prefer to be together. They seem reluctant in mixing up with elder generations, especially in the workstream. The inclination towards the same age group often poses challenges to HR Managers in building a cohesive work culture. In that case, it is advisable that the HR managers or human resource management team understand the specific traits and intentions of all ages in order to bring them together. One can overcome this challenge via building groups, where the elder and experienced employees can share their expertise in equal proportion to the new generation’s fresher ideas and skill-sets. The workplace can be made flexible enough to incorporate the working style of both the younger and elder generation. The management team’s emphasis should be on improving the correspondence between the diverse age group so as to understand each another’s qualities and shortcomings.

Challenge 2
Values: Employees belonging to different generation conveys a different and diverse set of qualities to the workplace. When Baby Boomer's esteem for uniqueness and material achievement, Generation X is progressively centered around adaptable work culture, family time and quicker promotional chances. Furthermore, Millennials esteem social exercises, individual flexibility, and working environment commitment.

These qualities and traits often get transmitted to the working environment. Baby Boomers, expect the younger generation i.e. Millennials to work on the same wavelength as they. They expect the younger generation to have the same level of commitment, desire to work hard and willingness to work for extra hours in case of need, regardless of various leveled structures the Millennials grew up with. Understanding these multigenerational distinctions can be a crucial phenomenon for the HR Managers to deal with various frames of mind and successfully drive the business organization forward. The organization in general and team leader in specific should, therefore, respect each working methods of different employees to keep them united and productive.

If the outlook is different it is obvious that there will be distinctions in styles of correspondence or communication among the younger and elder generation of employees. The new-gen says starting from Millennials to Generation Z, they completely rely on social media or other web-based applications to propagate their thoughts. On the other hand, the elder generation like Baby Boomers and Generation X, prefer going for face-to-face communication or conventional mediums like messages or phone calls. They will be reluctant in using the web-based communication medium for their transactions. Additionally, the casual and short languages used by the younger generation comes in contrast to the long run sentences used by the elder generation. If not taken care of, these communicational contrasts shall surely lead to hierarchical fights, resulting in an imbalanced work environment.

How to break the multigenerational barriers in business place?
There is no doubt that business directors should change their style of approach so as to improve the viability of the ages. The multigenerational setting expects the management to teach themselves and address the necessities of any age inside the individual work environments. Alongside this, they should show the willingness to adopt different procedures and techniques, to battle effectively the generational hindrances in the work environment. They should constantly establish a work environment that is open and adaptable to various methods for working and work attributes. Managers should make it a point to utilize various communication channels right from conventional to the latest digitized means while tending to their workers. The incorporation of diverse gathering positions, style of individual correspondence makes the multigenerational workforce run smooth and productive.

Implementation of employee appraisal and assessment practices can be progressively vital for human resource management to execute their daily routine without any hindrance.

In nutshell, the secret sauce of managing a multigenerational workforce is to create a space for information sharing. Blend together the seasoned and experienced employees with a young one. Make the elder employee as vocation tutors for the youthful generation to teach the insights, while in the meantime persuade the elders to incorporate the latest methodologies proposed by the younger generation to keep themselves abreast and adaptable to changes.