A day doesn’t go by that you don’t hear about Millennials in the workforce. Millennials, Millennials, Millennials. It is as if Millennials are taking over the world! What about the rest of us!!??!!
I am a Baby Boomer, born in the early 60’s. My kids are Millennials. I watch them interact with their friends taking selfies and snapchatting. Does that make them stereotypical narcissistic Millennials? Or are they just having fun? There is a lot of negative press about Millennials these days, but I am amazed at their ability to truly multi-task and be productive. True, they are on their phones all the time, but in between selfies, maybe they are taking an on line class!
In addition to Millennials, I work with Baby Boomers, Gen Xer’s, and even a few Matures, either in our home office at NuVue or in our daily training sessions. According to statistics from the Department of Labor, estimated size of the United States Labor Force for 2015 was:
- 55.2 million Millennials
- 50.4 million Gen Xer’s
- 50.1 million Baby Boomers
- 3.9 million Matures
While Millennials can multi-task, Gen Xer’s strengths include adaptability and ability to have a work-life balance. Gen Xer’s grew up in the ‘70’s and early ‘80’s, where many of them were “latchkey kids”. After school programs for working parents did not really exist. Many of them grew up too fast, leading them now to have a reputation for being “helicopter parents”. They value time with their families, striving for work-life balance.
As I mentioned before, I am a Baby Boomer. Most Baby Boomers are ambitious and live to work. We are competitive and loyal. My wife may say I am a workaholic, I think it is because I love my job!
Although the Matures are a small piece of the workplace puzzle, they still have a lot to offer. They bring dedication and experience. Matures have seen hard times in WWII and the Great Depression. They are the wealthiest of all the generations; prosperity coming from moderation.
We all bring assets to the table, no matter our generation. The key is to focus on developing positive relationships and strategies for more effective interaction with people of each generation.
Times are changing, but change is good. Can you even imagine a world without email? How did we manage our lives without email? Now, go out and take a selfie and try to get in on the fun!