Lee Caraher tells us how intergenerational workplaces can succeed despite the perceived great divide between Millennials and earlier generations like Boomers.
Lee Caraher: The Millennial Whisperer
Lee Caraher literally wrote the book on Millennials in the workplace. Lee is a Boomer whose company hired their first Millennial in 2010 and who quickly realized that they were in for a change. By the end of the year, the organization had hired six more Millennials, all of whom failed within their first three months.
Lee was disturbed by this high rate of failure and tried to figure out what happened. She notes that a Google search of “Millennials in the workplace” turns up over 2.5 million negative entries. As someone with her own business and a ways to go until retirement, Lee decided, “I cannot be negative about the generation that’s going to make my future possible. So I threw everything out and we figured it out for ourselves.”
In figuring it out for her business, she also ended up helping many of her clients figure it out for theirs, which eventually led to her authoring “Millennials & Management: The Essential Guide to Making it Work at Work.”
Connect with Lee: www.leecaraher.com
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Are Millennials really that different from earlier generations?
People talk about intergenerational conflict today like it’s something new, but it’s not. Humans have always been informed by their generation (in addition to many other factors), so it’s no surprise that Millennials have a different perspective of the world than the GenXers before them, and the Boomers before them, and so on.
A company today could have as many as three or four different generations working together. And within the Millennial group, there are three subgroups to consider:
- Ages 28–35, who entered the workforce after 9/11.
- Ages 22–28, who entered the workforce after the economy crashed in 2008.
- Ages 15–21, who will enter the workforce having grown up with technology from the start, including in school.
How do these subgroups perceive themselves and the world around them? And how can people from such different perspectives get along in the workplace? Listen to this episode of Crack the Customer Code to find out.
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