No one probably likes to be called narcissistic, a quitter or lazy, would you agree?
Few would want to laugh while watching the parody of their job interview, showing how unrealistic and selfish their attitude towards life is.
Stereotypes have always been and will always be hurtful, stereotypical opinions often lead to incorrect conclusions and misjudgements.
ARE MILLENNIALS MONSTERS?
Let’s not duplicate popular opinions and instead try to look for features that help different generations to understand each other and work together with an awareness and respect that will allow us all to access and use our common potential.
What should we know?
Who is who? Which years belong to generations’ X, Y, Z and the Baby Boomers?
According to the Pew Research Center, we can categorize the generations in the following way:
Boomers – born between 1946-1964
Generation X – born between 1965-1980
Generation Y (Millennials) – born between 1981-1996
Generation Z (Post-millennial) born between 1997-
What technology were they born into?
Baby Boomers were raised in „an analogue way” with few TV channels and no Internet at all.
Generation X „ learnt to accept and access” the internet.
Generation Y, „has always had access” to the internet.
Generation Z – often seen to be born with a smartphone or a tablet in their hands. They have been accompanied by this technology since birth, treating it like it’s ordinary and has always been common.
There is an interesting concept (developed in 2001 by Marc Prensky) dividing people according to their birth date „digital immigrants” (born before 1980 – people who have learned how to use technology as adults) and „digital natives” (born after 1980 – people for who the Internet is as natural as breathing.)
What are the circumstances and experiences that are shaping and have shaped our consciousness?
Every generation has experienced different transformational events, different social and cultural changes such as wars, landing on the moon for the first time, the first PC, easily accessible or hard to reach education, the first mobile phones, social media and many others. Everything shapes us and sometimes these events make us more impatient, sometimes more resistant, hesitant, tolerant or judgemental. They open us up to development or made us afraid of change and ou lack of ability to adapt well.
HOW TO WORK AND LIVE TOGETHER?
Dr Megan Gerhardt, Professor of Management and Leadership at the Farmer School of Business at Miami University coined the notion of “gentelligence” explaining that generational diversity can help organizations to create opportunities from the differences that exist in the workplace.
Adapting to different generations (sometimes 5 in the same workplace!) in our everyday working life will make it easier and more effective. We have different learning and motivation styles, our conflict management styles and even our communication preferences will differ.
But does this mean that Generation X should learn by heart „the millennial acronyms” should they keep up to date with the latest slang being used (JOMO or FOMO), or post more photos (maybe POTD) even if they don’t feel the need?
The CEO of LinkedIn, Jeff Weiner states: „You have to maintain a culture of transformation and stay true to your values.”
IMHO that’s the point 😉