“The time has come to carry accountability forward, to take it offline and into the real world.” – Craig Gross
The ability of generations to work together and learn from each other revolves around communication, experience, and technology. The largest gap between generations and the opportunity to leverage change in organizations lies in bridging a valuable partnership between Baby Boomers and Millenials. The opportunities are endless for developing talent and increasing productivity in the workplace. And, this is often an overlooked area for organizations to help build capacity and capabilities to create a structure for growth.
A number of Millenials feel that Academia failed to prepare them for leadership roles and life in Corporate America. Likewise, many Baby Boomers feel that Corporate America failed them in restructuring them out of organizations at a time when companies could have capitalized on their deep expertise and knowledge to mentor future leaders and help close the experience gap. And, Millenials have a lot to offer around innovative ideas and technology insights they can share with seasoned professionals.
Given the record low unemployment rate, it appears that companies are shortsighted and not leveraging this long-term benefit of talent development and pivotal connectivity to the organization that can be very advantageous in a rapidly changing business environment. Instead of stereotyping Millenials and Baby Boomers, there is an untapped opportunity to create an education platform within organizations to utilize communication, experience, and technology to build strong teams, navigate problems, and increase the success rate of key initiatives.
All employees want to be taken seriously and appreciated for their contributions. Perhaps the time has come for organizations to step away from rigid hierarchies and old school thinking and embrace flexibility and the value of change that can be promoted through a change management experience that goes far deeper than the relationship with an employee’s manager.
According to IBM Watson Talent, 65% of employees leave companies to learn new skills. And, LinkedIn published a survey recently that indicated that 94% of employees would stay with their company longer if the company invested in developing them. So, leveraging the voice of experience and new ideas with the efficient use of technology and reinvention of skills is a winning destination for success and respect.
Diversity of thought reinforces innovation and prevents failure. Team effectiveness promotes leadership development and new ideas. Continuous learning and diversity together are a winning combination. It also supports female and diversity representation that appeals to consumers and breaks down barriers.
By leveraging change and closing the gaps between these generations, companies can build strong leaders, respect experience, and address their talent retention challenges. Ultimately, the accountability for change lies with senior leaders and the value they perceive by investing in talent and culture. And, all parties will need to be open-minded to make it work.