Per this article, “For the first time in history, four generations of workers could find themselves working together.”
As the workforce tends to work longer than ever before, it’s becoming more common place for younger generations to manage their elders.
As I’ve seen first hand, this often results in bitterness on the part of the older generation because they feel they feel they’ve put in their years and “know the business” better.
At the same time, younger members of the workforce tend to generalize that older workers have settled in their ways and don’t have a fresh perspective anymore.
I’m here to tell you that while these two scenarios can be true, they are not the case all the time, nor should they be. Older employees have a lot of wisdom and experience to pass on, but many stay hungry for progress and innovation, staying at the same passion level as their younger counterparts. I’ve also met many younger professionals who manage older employees by truly listening to them, leaning on their experiences and then crediting them for help – that’s how you manage someone older than you.
The article continues to give more insight into what both members of the younger-employee-managing-older-employee relationship need to do for success. I’d also love to hear the perspective of any of you who have experienced this situation. How did you handle it? What have you learned?