Challenges Of Managing Cross Generational Communication

1162 Words 5 Pages
Title and Research Question
Challenges of managing cross generational communication. What are the main challenges that managers will face when communicating to staff in a multi-generational workplace?

Introduction
Four generations currently exist in the workplace, with a fifth generation beginning to break ground. The oldest generation is referred to as the Silent (e.g. mature or traditional) generation; a group of workers who are typically deemed as cautious and disciplined (Stark & Farner, 2015). The Silent generation is followed by Baby Boomers whom are babies born after the end of World War II and lasting two decades past this date terminating in approximately 1964. The third generation is Generation X. These are individuals who
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Generally, the best way to communicate with individuals throughout an organization is to individualize the approach which requires you to find out what each individual truly prefers, however, if we look deeper into each generation we are able to make some assumptions on how each group may prefer to communicate, along with some of the barriers that may arise. For example, Traditionalists prefer face-to-face communication and often when this generation is put into situations where they are required to use a textual form of communication such as email, they are usually much more critical of employees who write in an informal manner such as text message form. They are also critical of those who do not pay attention to certain grammar and spelling rules. Baby Boomers, similar to the Traditionalist, prefer face-to-face communication or communication by telephone (Glass, 2007). To successfully interact with a Baby Boomer one may get up and walk across the room to their office or desk instead of sending an email or text. Generation X members value skepticism, informality, and practicality, and can sometimes be impatient (Noe, 2008). Therefore, whatever communication medium is selected, it is important to be concise and practical with the content otherwise they will become uninterested. Millennials and those from Generation Z have grown up with computers and technological devices at their disposal. They are more naturally …show more content…
However, conflict is inevitable especially between differing generations. Being mindful of communication styles is of utter importance as older generations prefer different communication mediums. Finding a middle ground can help overcome these differences. Differences in nonverbal communication also exist, but these can easily be resolved by encouraging communication between members of different generations. Once these issues are resolved in the workplace members of each generation can become one unit and begin to work together by providing feedback to one another and closely examining the issues of group dynamics and conflict

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