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Leadership and the Inter-Generational Divide: 10 Suggestions for Boomer Managers and Executives

October 6, 2019

Boomer managers and executives face some big challenges as they exit the labour market or begin to contemplate retirement, while simultaneously attending to their management responsibilities. The clash of value sets among the five generations in the labour market presents significant leadership challenges, but they’re not impossible.

To assist Boomer managers and executives, here’s a list of suggestions to keep in mind when interacting with younger co-workers.

1) There is life after work. Take a cue from Gens X and Y.

2) You don’t own all the corporate knowledge.

3) Listen to Gens X and Y before speaking. What are they REALLY saying?

4) Be clear in your communication; don’t try to be hip and use the slang of younger people.

5) Be who you are–no facades; Gens X and Y will appreciate it.

6) NEVER say, “This is how things are done around here.”

7) Don’t provide answers. Ask Gens X and Y for their solutions to problems. That’s how people grow into leaders.

8) Be clear on your expectations and accountability.

9) Emphasize that the customer/client/citizen is the organization`s raison d’être — why it exists.

10) Leave a positive legacy with your organization. Mentor an up-and-comer.

Take a moment to share your thoughts, including adding to this list.


Leaders are the ones who keep faith with the past, keep step with the present, and keep the promise to posterity.
– Harold J. Seymour

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