History Making: Four Generations in the Workplace

What ever happened to the Generation Gap? This term was made popular during the 1960s and referred to the tension-creating differences that hung between people of younger generations and their elders–more specifically between children and their parents. According to the article, “Mixing and Managing Four Generations of Employees,” it still exists. This is the first time in American history that we have had four generations working side-by-side in the workplace. These are the Veterans, Baby Boomers, Gen Xers, and Millennials. Each brings a different worldview, set of values, and life experiences. And the tensions brought about by these cultural differences often affect good working relationships and stifle productivity. This effect upon the workplace also transfers to our organizations and congregations. So, why not begin with becoming aware of the experiences, values, and expectations unique to each generation. This is an important first step in reaping the benefits that multiple generations can bring to our work or ministry settings. It’s all about culture!

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