How Do You Lead a Multigenerational Workforce?


By Hadley Catalano

Women in leadership positions are now managing multiple generations of employees, sometimes with as much as a 50-year age gap. Generally speaking, the scenario isn’t entirely new: seasoned employees with years of experience have often worked alongside fresh, inexperienced hires. What is historic; however, is that in the last 10 years, the workplace has grown to include four generations of employees: Traditionalists (1922-1945), Baby Boomers (1946-1964), Generation X (1965-1981), and Generation Y, also known as Millennials (1982-2000).

This historic moment can be attributed to an aging labor force. Once, the golden age of retirement was between the ages of 60 and 65. Today, people are working well into their 70’s. Why? Sometimes the answer is as simple as “because they can,” though the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports that more often than not it’s a matter of requiring more than a fixed income in an unsteady economy, one rife with slashed retirement packages and to guarantee postretirement income.

This growing trend of multigenerational workplaces has been well documented by the BLS, as employees stay on well past retirement age and Gen Y workers set to outnumber Boomers and Gen X workers by 2015. But what does it mean for women who must lead multigenerational teams? Read More

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