Generational Diversity

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INTRODUCTION
The need for one organization to outperform its competitors has given rise to a diverse workforce comprising of different individuals who significantly differ from one another. Diversity in the workplace has been defined as the differences and similarities among the employees that make up an organization in terms of age, cultural background, sex, religion (Business Dictionary). The diversity in the workplace in terms of age is more often referred to as generational diversity.
The desire by some to stay and work longer has led to the current workforce capturing many generations. With countries such as the US capturing as many as 5 distinct generations, others have been able to capture 3 and 4. The various generations segment the
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As reported by (Fletcher, et al., 2009) there are about 50 million of the silent generations still alive with as many as 97 % of them are already retired from the active workforce. The children who grew up in this generation were generally encouraged to be quiet as they were ‘meant to be seen and not heard.' This resulted in the vast number of the silent generation not being disposed to giving public speeches.
The silent generation grew up in the middle of a depression, which in turn encouraged them to become more ambitious and set goals for themselves. The following attitudes are common among the silent generation: strong work ethics, loyalty, respect for constituted authorities, technology challenged, traditional (Kane, 2016). As a result of the great depression witnessed during the period dominated by the silent generation, they usually are very hardworking preferring to put in more work to get ahead of the competition. This often can lead to them retiring as very wealthy
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This will go a long way in minimizing frictions in the workplace that is sometimes a result of misunderstanding among colleagues.
The different groups have demonstrated different working behaviours based on their attitudes. Therefore efforts must be made in developing flexible working conditions that encourage the participation of both younger and older generations. Work from home can be encouraged as this allows the younger millennial generation to maximize their full potential; it will also be beneficial to the older baby boomers who are on the verge of retirement.
Mentorship should also be encouraged among the younger generations and the older baby boomers and traditionalist to facilitate cross-generational interaction. This will allow the younger ones to acquire the knowledge and experiences of the older ones while encouraging the older generations to be open to new ideas and different perspectives brought forward by the younger

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