Thursday, June 9th, 2011 - 13:39
This article is adapted from Susan Hannam and Bonni Yordi,
“Engaging a Multi-Generational Workforce: Practical Advice
for Government Managers” (Washington, DC: IBM Center for
The Business of Government, 2011).
The American workplace, the federal government workplace included, is undergoing a significant transition that presents both serious challenges and tremendous opportunities.
As a result, today’s managers face an unprecedented set of challenges. As organizations prepare for the coming generational shift, they need to take full advantage of the knowledge of their experienced workers, while at the same time rethinking old para digms about what work is and how it gets done.
A major challenge for today’s Traditionalist and Baby Boomer managers is to figure out how to develop younger workers into tomorrow’s managers under a new model. A prudent question for managers is, “Do we want our legacy to be of mentoring and empowering the next generations, or of fighting them tooth and nail?” Organizations that embrace generational differences in values, ways of getting things done, and ways of communicating will thrive.
Managers who harness this unprecedented opportu nity for growth, development, and collaboration, and build bridges between generations, will thrive.