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Bridging communication gap between generations

Is your boss younger than you? Are you communicating well with each other? According to a conference survey 20 percent of 231 attendees polled are reporting to a younger supervisor. The survey data calls attention to today’s multi-generational workplace. The technologically adept Generation X bridges the gap between e-mail-reliant Baby Boomers and the digital natives of Generation Y. “Companies are working toward creating a more inclusive work environment. This means equitable messaging for all employees, regardless of how and where they work,” said Susan Johnson, Vice President, Executive Succession and Diversity Strategies, Pitney Bowes Inc. “Effective diversity strategies now address regional, generational and even technological differences found throughout the workforce.” As each generation displays unique characteristics, knowing how to motivate and communicate with employees of all ages can be critical to a team and organisation’s overall success. A few tips for knowing your generational audience include: Emphasise the strengths of each generation and instill these values into the workplace: l Baby Boomers tend to thrive on individualism. l Gen Xers often are drawn to entrepreneurialism. l Millennials may have an affinity for teamwork. Susan Johnson adds: “As companies master customer communications management, they should also apply this strategy with their own employees. Sending the right message in the right channel to each generation in this challenging economic environment may lead to increased productivity and morale.” Consider communications channel preferences l Baby Boomers are most familiar and comfortable with email. l Generation X is flexible and savvy with most channels and technologies. l Millennials are constantly connected and turn first to text or instant message rather than talking.