The Battle of Gen X and Gen Y
There¡¦s no doubt about it, the newest diversity issue in the workplace is age diversity. Many organizations have finally figured out how to recruit young talent only to watch them drive down a collision course with seasoned employees over issues like work ethic, respect for authority, dress code and every work arrangement imaginable. And they're not sure what to do about it.
With this paper, I decided to take this concept because of the people that I have to work with on a continual basis. They are usually people from the Generation X trying to communicate with Generation Y. Just the other day I heard from someone I am working with, ¡§Those god d*&# young kids don¡¦t want to work. Then they have to ask ¡¥Why do I have to learn this anyways?¡¦¡¨ I just sit back, smile, and think to myself there has to be an easier way in getting the information highway open to people no matter what the age. Good communication skills are essential to get any message across and there are many times our verbal and written messages are not received and interpreted as intended. That is why I chose to look at the Generations of X and Y.
I first had to define what a generation is. A generation, loosely defined, is a group of people who can be demographically identified by biological trends and have shared experiences (Stephens Generation X Site, 2004).
I did a little research first on the Generation Y babies (1980-1994). These young adults are in a league all their own. This generation has a hopeful outlook, a determined work ethic, and gets turned off by promiscuity (Mcai-mn.org, 2004). This generation also likes a direct communication approach. No surprise, they get along well with the over sixty generation. They have a global perspective, and this may be due to the pace of technological change in the last twenty years that promotes communication without barriers. When you look at this group closer, they are able to adapt rapidly, innovate constantly, accept others easily and rebound quickly. They have the time, tools, and the talent to create a better world and better results.
Now those Generation X¡¦s have there own fond little quirks too! They were brought up on television, Atari 2600s and personal computers. They are the generation that was raised in the 1970s and 1980s, and saw this country undergo a selfish phase that they do not want to repeat (Jochim, 2004). Generation Xers are more realistic than pessimistic when it comes to issues such as hate, crime, violence, poverty, pollution and disease. It is this realism and ability to deal with issues rather than ignore them. Most are decent, pragmatic, creative, strongly independent, self-reliant, and hard-working. They have a surprisingly good work ethic - including a strong sense of company loyalty, as long as it's reciprocal - and we want to get ahead, even though we aren't as concerned with the trappings of "success" as earlier...