Successfully Merge Coworkers among Many Generations

Actual Comments of Why Employees Leave
“Most of the people in IT are younger – hired out of college, or after just a few years of experience. As an older person with many years of experience (late 40s), the seemingly constant jokes about being old and not so sharp any longer became tiresome and not so funny to me.”

The Solution
This is a very typical situation that managers are faced with today – the ability to merge generations into a productive team. Younger employees more than likely have a stronger understanding of current technology and are able to adapt more quickly to changes in technology. Older employees have wisdom as a result of their valued work experiences and a better understanding of the change process. All of these attributes are necessary for building effective and cohesive teams.

How do you build that bridge? First, all employees, regardless of their age, want to be respected by others. No one wants to feel their contributions are not important because of their age. Organizational culture plays a major role in whether jokes about age, gender, etc. are acceptable. Are these types of jokes or statements acceptable behavior in your organization? Does your organization have clear expectations with respect to diversity? Maybe the expectations were poorly communicated and/or have not been reinforced lately. Offensive jokes can lead to bad morale and in this situation, turnover among employees. Jokes can also lead to potential legal problems.

Reduce employee turnover by taking the time to know your employees and their skills, knowledge, abilities, and unique capabilities. Then, educate your employees on the values of everyone’s differences. Make sure you are leveraging everyone’s talents to the fullest to build teams that ensure organizational and individual success. You may think this could be a time-consuming process, but it’s really about communicating with your employees. Take time to get to know your employees. It will be time well spent.

(This blog post brought to you by HSD Metrics, an exit interview company that helps companies reduce employee turnover by providing automated reference checking, exit interviews, and by measuring employee retention. The comments from exiting employees that are featured in this blog are collected from actual exit interviews conducted using ExitRight®, HSD’s exit interviewing service. Because we place the privacy of our clients at the top of our priority list; the names of all involved parties are kept completely confidential. For more information about our ExitRight® survey, or to schedule your demo, contact us today.).