70% of young professionals (21-39) express frustration when working with experienced professionals. The same can be said on the other side, when asking experienced professionals (40+) how they communicate with young professional talent.
Communication and understanding are at the root of this issue and it’s a factor that contributes to young professionals leaving businesses in droves today.
In my work with businesses across the country, I often hear comments like “Our young people don’t respect us”, or “They don’t seem to work hard, so it’s difficult for us to work with them.”
Young professionals typically mention that they “struggle to get their older counterparts to listen or trust them”.
To prepare the young leaders of our workforce, all working generations need to come together to learn how to communicate better to create a stronger culture.
- Consider getting your leadership team together and discuss the specific behaviors of the multiple working generations in your office; you probably have a few different ones represented in that room and a good old-fashioned strategy and plan wouldn’t hurt.
- Offer a section in your onboarding for young professional employees that establishes communication right away with coworkers from various generations so they don’t immediately stick to the other young professionals in the office.
- Embrace mentoring. Pair up an experienced professional with a young professional that is not necessarily a new employee.
Poor communication between generations can have lasting impacts on your business.
The first step in solving this is awareness. As company leaders, consider discussing this topic – if you are not already – with your HR team and determine best steps for moving forward. Remember – this will not happen immediately, but small steps today can have big impacts tomorrow.
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