Course Outcomes

This generational diversity course for managers will:

  • Provide participants with an overview of the five generations found in the workplace.
  • Outline how members of each generation approach such workplace activities as interviewing, showing engagement, giving and receiving customer service, buying and selling, communicating, and working on teams.
  • Highlight strategies for communicating, coaching, and counseling members of each group.

Course Overview

For the first time in modern history, people from five generations must regularly interact with each other in the workplace. At first, the challenges of understanding how those from other generations think can seem like an insurmountable task. “Those people don’t think logically!” “They have no work ethic.” “Does paying your dues mean nothing anymore?” “Doesn’t he realize 1960 was a long time ago?” Left unchecked, the opportunities for conflict and disengagement are vast. However, with the right approach in place to managing generational differences, organizations can capitalize on the value each group brings to the office. This interactive workshop provides a survey of generations at work and explores best practices for managing a generationally diverse group.

Program Objectives

At this program’s conclusion, participants should be able to:

  • Describe the five generations found at work, their core values, and personalities.
  • Explain how generational differences impact communication styles and work preferences.
  • Discuss the positive attributes that each generation brings to the office.
  • Implement tactics for communicating with and managing members of each generation.
  • Promote stronger communication in a generationally diverse team.

The following outline highlights some of the course’s key learning points. As part of your training program, we will modify content as needed to meet your business objectives. Upon request, we will provide you with a copy of the participant materials prior to the session(s).

Workshop Outline

Nice to Meet You: Introducing the Five Distinct Groups

During this opening discussion, participants will work through a series of interactive activities that will introduce them to the five generations: who they are, their personalities, and their core values. We will also talk about how a generation forms and the conditions that usually exists when one group stops and another begins. The discussions planned in this module draw on the group’s personal experiences as well as academic research and what’s been written about the subject. 

What Makes Them Tick: The Business Impact of Generational Diversity

Demographics have shifted significantly in recent years, and the workforce looks very different than it did a half a century ago. A large group of people is nearing retirement, and another significant cohort is entering professional life or already in the early stages of it. Somewhere in between is a smaller group that, in addition to work, is often tasked with the demands associated with raising children and looking after aging parents. The point is, each group has a unique set of needs and expectations. What’s important to people varies at different stages of their lives. This segment explores generational expectations and preferences related to such activities as recruiting, retention, customer service, communication, and working in a team.

Connecting with Customers: Managing External Relationships

The traditionalist wants to receive correspondence by U.S. mail, the Boomer is fine with email or a phone call, the people from Generation X want to login to an account and talk to no one, and the newest group will engage via text or social media. Of course, people from all generations will use a range of channels, but like it or not, groups do tend to have a preference for one over another. This part of the course looks at communication practices and how members of different generations most often prefer to engage.

What They Can Do for You: Strengths of Each Generation

Each generation that enters the workforce brings with it new ideas and ways of viewing the world. This part of the program looks at the process of assimilating younger (and sometimes older) employees and the management activities that can be used to leverage generational strengths. During this portion of the workshop, we’ll talk specifically about how to bring a mixed team together and focus them on accomplishing a group goal. We will also look at some best practices for building intergenerational trust and encouraging cross-generational communication.

The Right Ingredients: Generational Leadership

This seminar segment builds on the discussion started in the previous course component. During this part of the program, we’ll talk about best practices for delegating, coaching, and counseling members of different generations. We will also discuss tactics for overcoming any challenges participants have when building rapport and managing people from generations different from their own.

Mixing It All Together: Five Principles for Keeping It Simple

In this final segment, we will try our hand at future casting and attempt to predict what’s coming five to ten years down the road. Next, we’ll end the program with additional skills practice. Participants will tackle a series of case studies where they will apply five key principles to simplify intergenerational interactions.

By the conclusion of this program, participants should have a solid understanding of what it takes to interact with employees of all ages and manage people from different generations effectively.