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This paper addresses the differences between Generations Y and X. The goal of the essay is to define the characteristics that set the two generations apart from each other, as well as explore the tendencies that both generations display and research the strategies that can be used to meet the needs of the target populations.
An overview of the existing studies shows that Generation X is defined by its attitude toward family issues, particularly, the emphasis that it places on independence, as well as their impressive academic skills. Generation Y, in turn, is characterized by the emphasis that its members place on diversity in communication, as well as their technological savvy.
To manage the dynamics between the two groups in the workplace, one should consider using the leadership strategy that allows encouraging independence among the company members, as well as offers extensive opportunities for change and active use of innovations. As a result, the premise for meeting the needs of both generations can be built.
Introduction: The Generation Gap
The phenomenon known as the generation gap has been in existence for centuries, and it has been known for affecting the relationships between the representatives of different generations extensively. The confrontations in which a generation gap typically results in the workplace lead to a significant drop in the overall productivity levels and, thus, impede the further organizational progress (Durkin, 2008). Therefore, creating approaches that will allow managing the relationships between different generations is crucial to the efficacy of a firm’s performance.
To make sure that the members of Generations X and Y could coexist in the workplace, one should consider adopting the strategy that will include active promotion of independence for Generations X and the introduction of opportunities for an increase in competency levels among the representatives of Generation X. Thus, the environment in which both groups will feel comfortable will be created. Furthermore, a leadership strategy based on the active promotion of diversity and cooperation must be used to make sure that Generations X and Y should communicate efficiently and avoid conflicts successfully.
Generation X: Description and Management
Generation X is often addressed as the best-educated one, with a significant amount of its members having a Bachelor’s or a Master’s degree and having a propensity toward independence in education, as well as in other domains of their lives. As a result, the representatives of Generation X tend to adopt a pragmatic philosophy and a corresponding set of values. Their maturity and ability to plan carefully make them very valuable employees (Lovely, 2005).
Generation Y: Description and Management
Born between 1965 and 1981, Generation Y is typically defined by its independence and propensity toward active learning (Reynolds, Bush, & Geist, 2008). Driven and eager to explore the existing opportunities, the representatives of Generation Y can be deemed as the product of the globalization process. As a result, the significance of communication and diversity is deeply valued by the target population (Lovely, 2005).
Therefore, it is crucial for a leader and a manager to provide the representatives of Gen Y with an opportunity to explore their potential and engage in lifelong learning as the means of maintaining the quality of their performance high. Furthermore, the enhancement of connectivity between the members of Gen Y must be viewed as a priority since the specified population is defined by its propensity to use information technology as the means of maintaining a consistent connection with their community members and peers (Bolman & Deal, 2017).
Designing the Ultimate Management Strategy
As stressed above, it is crucial to make sure that the representatives of both generations should feel comfortable in the workplace. For this purpose, a healthy environment must be created. Particularly, the active promotion of directness, straightforwardness, and transparency in communicating the company’s goals will have to be viewed as a priority (Sapher & King, 1985). Furthermore, it is strongly recommended that a coherent yet flexible plan should be created so that the representatives of Gen Y could follow it closely and at the same time feel independent in managing their roles and responsibilities (Bolman & Deal, 2017).
To build the environment in which the members of Generation X will feel comfortable, one will have to consider offering them an opportunity for consistent professional growth, as well as extensive career opportunities. Thus, the need of the target population to engage in active learning will be satisfied. Furthermore, the pragmatic needs of Gen X, particularly their striving to achieve success in their career will be met.
Therefore, the general management strategy in the environment w where Gen X and Y members must cooperate should imply focusing on effective communication, opportunities for professional growth, and recognition of employees’ independence. As a result, both Gen Y and X members will receive a powerful impetus for excelling in their performance. Furthermore, being bound by a single objective and accepting the importance of cooperation, Gen Y and X members will avoid conflicts in the workplace.
Conclusion: Bridging the Two Cultures
The needs of Generations X and Y are very different, yet a coherent management strategy aimed at promoting efficient communication and professional growth is bound to help the target population come to terms with their differences. By building the environment in which both groups will feel comfortable, one will be able to avoid major conflicts, disagreements, and similar issues. As a result, a rapid increase in employees’ performance is expected.
Bolman, L. G., & Deal, T. E. (2017). Reframing organizations: Artistry, choice, and leadership. New York, NY: John Wiley & Sons.
Durkin, D. (2008). Youth movement. Communication World, 25(2), 23-25.
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Lovely, S (2005). Creating synergy in the schoolhouse. The School Administrator, 8(62), 30-34.
Reynolds, L., Bush, E. C., & Geist, R. (2008). The Gen Y imperative. Communication World, 25(3), 19-22.
Sapher, J., & King, M. (1985). Good seeds grow in strong cultures. Educational Leadership, 42(6), 67-74.