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Exploring Generational Differences:

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Presentation on theme: "Exploring Generational Differences:"— Presentation transcript:

1 Exploring Generational Differences:
Serving Generation Y with a Workforce of Baby Boomers and Generation X NCAPPA Conference March 7-8, 2012 Charlotte, N.C. David Holthouser Director of Facilities Management Davidson College

2 How often do you want feedback?
1) Feedback is not necessary 2) During a performance review 3) Just enough to let me know I am on the right track 4) All the time Your loyalty is toward…. 1) The organization 2) The importance and meaning of work 3) Your individual goals 4) People or projects How often do you use a computer for personal use? 1) Seldom 2) Just use at work is enough for me 3) Everyday 4) Cannot live without it How do you feel about work and money? 1) Work hard to be financially secure, and do not waste your money 2) Work should be meaningful, and money should be spent on something you love 3) Work should be short so you can get to your true interest. Money is not all that important. 4) Work should be as fun as possible. Life is short, so enjoy your money. Which type of customer contact do you prefer? 1) Face to Face communication 2) 3) Telephone 4) Texting Which type of reward motivates you the most? 1) Satisfaction of a job well done 2) Title and recognition 3) Money 4) Vacation What is important to you? 1) Your experience is respected 2) Being valued and needed in your workplace 3) Do it your way and forget the rules 4) Working with bright and creative people Which type of leadership belongs to you? 1) Top down style of management 2) Chain of Command 3) Self Command 4) Collaborative Which best describes your interactive style? 1) Individual 2) Team Player 3) Entrepreneur 4) Participative

3 Exploring Generational Differences:
Using the number associated with each answer, add up your points total. Score 9 – 20: Typical of the TRADITIONALISTS generation, generally referencing people born between 1922 – Score 21 – 25: Typical of the BABY BOOMER generation, generally referencing people born between 1945 – Score 26-30: Typical of GENERATION X, generally referencing people born between 1965 – Score 31 – 36: Typical of GENERATION Y (also known as MILLENNIALS), generally referencing people born between 1981 – 2000. Quiz Source: Instrument developed by T. Sesangthong for his Capstone Project:

4 Exploring Generational Differences:
Robert (Bob) Collins Director of Physical Plant The Citadel Davidson College1990–2000 B.A. Fresno College Lieutenant Colonel U.S. Army Two tours in Vietnam 174 Attack Helicopter Company Attended US Army Corps of Engineers training schools Early Baby Boomer David Holthouser 1969- Director of Facilities Management present B.S.M.E North Carolina State University 1992 (then) 31 years old, now 42 Director Experience = 0 Generation X

5 Exploring Generational Differences:
Birth Years 2013 % of Workforce Veterans 2% Boomers 32% Generation “X” 39% Generation “Y” 27%

6 Exploring Generational Differences:
Veterans b Came of Age Raised by Depression Era Parents Fought in World War II Nuclear Family

7 Exploring Generational Differences:
Veterans b Came of Age Baby Boomers b Prosperity at end of war Nuclear Family Disintegrating Education is a birthright Question Authority

8 Exploring Generational Differences:
Veterans b Came of Age Baby Boomers b Generation X b Raised by Boomers now turned conservative Raised in dual income families as latch key kids Watched parents suffer layoffs

9 Exploring Generational Differences:
Veterans b Came of Age Baby Boomers b Generation X b Generation Y b 1999- present Raised by parents who did not want to repeat latch-key independence Participated in multiple activities in multiple group settings Have always known technology. Cell phones common. Evolution of free cell minutes

10 Exploring Generational Differences:
Veterans b Came of Age Baby Boomers b Generation X b Generation Y b 1999- present Organizational Behaviors Typically disciplined, loyal team players who work within the system. They are respectful of authority, patient and follow the rules. Obviously, they have a vast knowledge legacy to share and embody a traditional work ethic. Boomers tend to be optimistic, ambitious, competitive, and focus on their personal accomplishments. They believe in working long-hours and expect the younger generations to adopt this approach. They have ruled the workplace for years and are comfortable in the culture they created. Having seen their parents laid off or face job insecurity, they’ve redefined loyalty. Instead of remaining loyal to their company, they’re committed to their work and people they work with. They are skeptical, risk-takers and want fun in the workplace. They also seek more work-life balance. They are typically team-oriented, and work well in groups, as opposed to individual endeavors. Also, they’re used to tackling multiple tasks with equal energy, so they expect to work hard. They’re good multi-taskers, having juggled sports, school and social interests growing up.

11 Exploring Generational Differences:
Veterans b Came of Age Baby Boomers b Generation X b Generation Y b 1999- present Workplace Strengths • Hard-working • Stable • Loyal • Thorough • Detail oriented • Focused • Emotionally mature • Team perspective • Dedicated • Experienced • Knowledgeable • Service-oriented • Independent • Adaptable • Creative • Techno-literate • Willing to challenge status quo • Optimistic • Able to multitask • Tenacious • Technologically savvy • Driven to learn and grow • Team oriented

12 Exploring Generational Differences:
Veterans b Came of Age Baby Boomers b Generation X b Generation Y b 1999- present Workplace Struggles • Reticent when they disagree • Respect for diversity • Reluctant to buck the system • Uncomfortable with conflict • Presenteeism related to medical issues • Not as comfortable with Technology Nontraditional work styles of Generations X and Y • Technology replacing human interaction • Sharing praise and rewards • Balancing work and family • Uncomfortable with conflict, reluctant to go against peers • Career development • Conflict resolution and office politics • Multi-generational team projects • Skeptical and distrustful of Authority • Respectful communication • Functional literacy • Need supervision and structure, especially with people issues. • Reject the concept of “paying dues,” expect input immediately.

13 Exploring Generational Differences:
Boomers problems with Gen X: No company loyalty No respect for authority No appreciation for paying dues or tenure Job hoppers Are not hard workers or rule followers Too independent – don’t see value in work relationships Seek work/life balance at expense of production Boomer’s problems with Gen Y: Desire for a flexible schedule Lack of respect for authority Want direction & enjoy collaboration Their informality at work Need to be supervised Excessive reliance on technology Inappropriate use of technology

14 Exploring Generational Differences:
Gen X’s problems with Boomers: Too hierarchical Distrust loyalty to company Rules shouldn’t matter, achieving goals does Full of double-speak, schmoozers Too structured Arrogant, used to dominating every trend and market place Too focused on relationships Not focused on getting work done Gen X’s problems with Gen Y Expect instant reward Expect immediate feedback Lack appreciation for infrastructure development Too easily bored Lack of respect for money

15 Exploring Generational Differences:
Gen Y’s problems with Boomers Delaying retirement/no opportunities for promotion Work obsessed Micromanagers Too autonomous Resistant to change Aversion to technology Gen Y’s problem with Gen X Not willing to work the time needed Take too many risks (“dot.coms”) Not willing to collaborate

16 Exploring Generational Differences:
Serving Generation Y (our current customers) Hours of Operation Communication Means Role of Parents

17 Exploring Generational Differences:
Serving Generation Y (our current customers) What are your campuses experiencing? Response Time Expected Role of Peer opinion Use or Misuse of Chain of Command Telecom as a Fundamental Utility Expectation of Sustainability Classroom Design

18 Exploring Generational Differences:

19 Exploring Generational Differences:
Parting Shot: If you have not browsed your campus on You Tube, do so soon……. Sources: “Mixing and Managing Four Generations in the Workforce” by Greg Hammill. “Engaging the Multi-Generational Workforce”, HR Management (,-Benefits-ANDCompensation/Engaging-the-Multi-generational-Workforce/); “Engaging Multiple Generations among Your Workforce” by Devon Scheef and Diane Thielfoldt (; Leading a Multigenerational Workforce, AARP, 2007; Managing the Multigenerational Workforce: Opportunity for Competitive Success (HR Magazine). “Techno Gap Faceoff: Gen Y vs. Baby Boomers,” by Diane Lanzillotta Bobis ( “Practical Research Report #16 – Baby Boomers and Generation X: Bridging the Gap,” by Brent Zinkand Employee Selection & Development Inc. ( “Gen Y vs. Boomers: Workplace Conflict Heats Up,” by David Koeppel The Fiscal Times ( Sirona Says Blog, “Ten Differences between Generation X and Generation Y Employees,”

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