If States is much more diverse than ever, whether

If we look around us, we see a world
of humans who are different from one another. We see that we are living in a
very cultural diverse planet. And today, the United States is much more diverse
than ever, whether it’s at school, at work, or even just walking on the street
to get to the supermarket. In America, we see that businesses observe different
ways to constantly grow by hiring people of different ages, gender, ethnicity,
and disability. All of this with the sole purpose to immerse itself in the
world that we live in today. Companies encourage diversity to generate business
that will successfully reach out to their customers. However, what most
companies struggle to understand due to the topic being very influential, yet
controversial, is the generational gap between employees within the workplace. In
the workplace today, we can find three different generations: Baby Boomers,
Generation X, and Generation Y (also known as Millennials). And with the three
articles that were analyzed during this review, we observe the different work
ethics and managerial strategies of each generation.

            Writers
John Becton, Harvell Walker, and Allison Jones-Farmer have outlined, in
numerical data, the differences between the three generations that are a part
of today’s workforce. They began the study with an understanding based on
surveys that each of these three generations have a different perspective on
the following areas: job satisfaction, organizational commitment, and overall
job expectations. These perspectives generally come from how each generation
was raised and molded into the society of their time. What they found, was that
Baby Boomers are often described as achievement oriented, independent, in
control of their own destinies, respectful of authority, loyal and attached to
organizations, and diligent on the job (Becton, Walker, & Jones-Farmer,
2014). In my view, Baby Boomers were raised in families that experienced unprecedented
economic prosperity, secure jobs, and optimism about the future. So, I believe
that the way they were raised by the previous generation is a factor as to why
they are being described the way they are in the workplace. Generation X, as
opposed to Baby Boomers, are defined by life experiences such as the age of
economic uncertainty, recessions, high unemployment, inflation, downsizing, and
high divorce rates among their parents (Becton, Walker, & Jones-Farmer,
2014). The individuals who were raised during the X generation lived with
dual-career families whose parents were focused too much on their work. Generation
“Xers” want economic security as much as Baby Boomers, but they have a different
approach to achieving it. Rather than focusing on job security, many of these
Generation Xers focus on career security instead and they would be willing to
change jobs to find it. Today, many of these Generation Xers are now managers and
they are responsible for motivating other employees in their organization. When
the X generation was young, they were raised and taught to be well-equipped to
motivate people by understanding that there is more to life than work, and they
think that a big part of motivating is letting people know you can recognize that
fact. Millennials come from an age that is driven by technology. Millennials
were born into technology. They are the first “high-tech” generation, having
never known life before cell phones, personal computers, and ATMs were
commonplace (Becton, Walker, & Jones-Farmer, 2014). The article written by
Becton, Walker, and Jones-Farmer should’ve looked at the why and how these
generations came to be the way they are. We must exert a better understanding
based on how much different, in proof, that the generations are working today
differ from one another. To observe the manner in a better perspective, the
study extended its research onto the effects of generational differences in the
workplace by investigating actual employee behaviors. While the results did
indicate some generational differences in workplace behavior exist, the effect
size for these relationships was very small. This article concluded with that
the fact that they would advise organizations from exerting much effort to
redesign practices and policies to more effectively manage workers from
different generations (Becton, Walker, & Jones-Farmer). Organizations
should keep steady in terms of rolling out new and traditional best practices
to ensure that the business is progressing regardless of which generation is
working at that company. However, what organizations do need to understand is that
the world isn’t getting any younger. They must plan for how to effectively
recruit, attract, and manage the younger generations.

We Will Write a Custom Essay Specifically
For You For Only $13.90/page!


order now

            How
we can learn to manage the younger generation, we look at the current and
future trends of multiple generations at work. Paul Roodin and Maeona Mendelson
have discussed the fact that it’s true that companies today have a good number
of generations working with each other and they all have different philosophies
in terms of how they want their careers to turn out for the short-term and the
long-term. For example, regarding older workers in the workforce, they welcome
the chance to be productive, derive social support from longtime colleagues,
are intellectually challenged, and have opportunities for both physical
activity and exercise (Roodin & Mendelson, 2013). With that concept, the older
workers in the workforce also tend to stay longer on the job and they look to postpone
retirement so that they can work for as long as they can. This is partially
from the fact that the older generation is labeled as workaholics who work more
than 40 hours a week just because they want to and, in fact, enjoy it. In my
view, this article seems to focus more on gender differences and age, but more
on the age difference. While this makes sense because the entire focus is on
the different generations in the workplace, but I believe that disability
should be put ahead of the two categories in this study. Disability plays a
huge factor when it comes to who is working at so and so company, no matter how
old or young that individual is. With more and more disabilities entering the
workforce today, we must understand that there are laws that accommodate the
needs of those disabled employees. For example, the ADA law helps prevent
disabled individuals from being discriminated against by anyone and anywhere. This
law was first passed in 1990, so the Millennials in the workforce are the first
to enact it in full force. Over time, they found out how they could be prevented
from being discriminated against potential employers or current employers. This
law, along with the generational gap, has been a game changer in the workplace
where there are old generations who must follow the law to comply with the
needs and wants of the younger generations or else they will face consequences.

            With
older generations working and managing alongside the younger generation in the
workplace, we consider how organizational leaders utilize their strategical
methods to effectively manage a multi-generational workforce. Ahmed Al-Asfour
and Larry Lettau conducted a thorough analysis of how each generation presents
its leadership style and how they manage the younger generation(s). Each
generation has its own unique values and views that are associated with the era
in which they were raised. The differences are apparent in the literature
discussed in this article and often lead to clashes between employees, managers,
and leaders. What some leaders might view as inappropriate, employees, depending
on their generation, might view as appropriate. Therefore, leaders need to
understand the best way of leading people based on their generation and other
diversity factors (Al-Asfour & Lettau, 2014). This point is generally
supported by many individuals because of the possibility of leaders being able
to adapt for who is working under them within the organization. A great leader
learns how to effectively manage their employees by knowing how to provide what
that employee needs to be able to successful. However, there are leaders out
there who do neglect their employees and “set them up to fail” just because of
who they are as a person. And those leaders are not true leaders and they are
simply in the position they are in because of the amount of experience they
have. I believe that if an employee has failed in his/her role, then that blame
is put on the manager because of the lack of support and guidance.

            Aside
from managers enabling their employees for success, it is important for
managers of all ages to be aware that employees of different generations
communicate differently. The traditionalist, the generation that lived through
the Great Depression and World War II, prefer to communicate face-to-face. And
their second choice is by phone, but recordings often frustrate them. Baby
Boomers generally prefer to communicate in meetings or conference calls.
Generation X generally prefer email communication and will choose meetings only
if there are no other options. Millennials most often use technology to
communicate, particularly through social media. As Millennials assume more
responsibilities in the workplace, they sometimes must manage and lead others
far older than themselves. So, how can young managers lead others who may have
more experience than they do? Perhaps the three most important things to keep
in mind are to be confident, be open-minded, and solicit feedback regularly. Communication
is key. Millennials should remember that asking for input and advice is different
from asking for permission or guidance. As the next generation, Generation Z,
enters the workplace, they are likely to be more cautious and security-minded,
but inspired to improve the world since they’ve seen the effects of the economy
firsthand. We can conclude that one thing in business that is likely to remain
constant: much of the motivation will come from the job itself rather than from
external punishment or rewards. Managers of all ages need to give employees
what they require doing a good job: the right tools, the right information, and
the right amount of cooperation. Motivation does not have to be difficult. It
begins with acknowledging a job well done – especially doing so in front of
others.