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From Gaga to Springsteen
Managing the Generation Gap at Work


 Breakout Session 611
 David Sotolongo
 RTI International


 July 20, 2010
 4:00 – 5:15 pm


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Let’s tune in to WIFM.

• What are the primary differences among the
  3 generations in the work force?
• Who’s at fault, if anyone?
• How can Boomers adapt?
• Who is Lady GaGa anyway?




                  3
Let’s Meet our Generations…

• Baby Boomers: 1946 to 1964
  –   80 million (40% of workers)
  –   Springsteen and Jaggar
  –   Star Wars and Annie Hall
  –   Woodstock and Disco?!




                       4
Let’s Meet our Generations…

• Generation X: 1965 to 1980
  –   40 million (36% of workers)
  –   Nirvana, Pearl Jam
  –   Say Anything, Wayne’s World
  –   Google, YouTube, MySpace
  –   Dot.com




                      5
Let’s Meet our Generations…

• Generation Y/ Millennials): 1981 to 2001
  – 72 million (16% of workers)
  – Black Eyed Peas, Lady GaGa
  – Forgetting Sarah Marshall,
    Paranormal Activity
  – Facebook
  – Twitter
     • Are Boomers ruining all of the social networks?




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The myth of the “Gen Y/
Millennial Slackers”
 “The companies that succeed over the next two
 decades will be the ones that can most inspire
 (Gen) Y. This is the most educated and
 technologically savvy generation ever.”

  – Jobfox CEO, Rob McGovern




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Which Generation Are You?

1. Boomer?
2. Gen X?
3. Gen Y/Millennial?




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Those spoiled, bratty boomers 
 •   Grew up in an era of unprecedented prosperity
 •   Rebellious in youth, but traditional in the workforce
 •   Spend less time with their kids
 •   More “senior moments”; thus, KGB and ask.com




                              9
Test for the Boomers

•   404                •   KPC
•   411                •   NIMJD
•   9                  •   PAL
•   99                 •   PICNIC
•   BRB                •   RMLB
•   GANB               •   RU/18
•   HBB                •   RU BRD?
•   ILICISCOMK         •   WRUD? TAB?



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Boomers Are Trying to Hold On
to Old Management Methods
• Praise is earned, not guaranteed
• Work your way to the top
• Respect the chain of command
• Wait your turn
• Balance work and family life by keeping them
  separate – but still work too much!
• Clueless about the “service industry gap”
• Don’t understand that phone calls and emails
  are “so last century, dude …”

                    11
Gen Y/Millennials Come from a
Very Different Background
• Feedback is expected … constantly
• Often came from over-protective, helicopter
  parents
• More comfortable communicating via technology
  than face to face (either at work or socially)
• Work day is 24/7 – but so is their social life
• Look at organizational structures as flat, not
  hierarchical
• Never knew a world that didn’t have remote
  controls
• IWIWIWI and IWIHIWI
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Gen X’ers Are Caught In- Between

• Grew up in an era of feminism and working
  moms
• Suffered the post-Boomer recession, which led
  to more cynicism
• Comfortable communicating via technology or
  face to face
• Tend to have a more structured view of
  work/family
• Independent, resilient, and very creative
• In the end, tend to be more like Millennials than
  Boomers
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Balancing Work and Home
Lives
• Integrators (Gen X/Y)        • Separators (Boomers)
   – Telecommute                  – Keep work at work
   – Laptops, cell phones,        – Don’t tend to use
      PDAs, TM, IM, Twitter         technology as much
   – Can flex between work        – Can’t alternate quickly
      and home easily               between the two
   – Facebook at work and at        spheres
      home




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BOOMERS: How do you
connect with your friends?
1.   Call them on the phone
2.   Email them
3.   Facebook updates
4.   Text message/Tweet



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GEN X/Y: How do you connect
with your friends?
1.   Call them on the phone
2.   Email them
3.   Facebook updates
4.   Text message/Tweet



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                  GEN X/Y: How do you connect with your friends?


                                                                     25%
 Call them o...
                                                                     25%




                                                                     25%
   Email them
                                                                     25%




                                                                     25%
Facebook up...
                                                                     25%




                                                                     25%
Text messag...
                                                                     25%


                                        First Slide   Second Slide




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The Legacy of the American
Boomers … Work, Work, Work!
• Americans did not use 438 million vacation
  days in 2007
• Companies who are in the European Union
  must offer workers at least 20 days off per
  year – sometimes more
• In Portugal, workers get 22 vacation days
  plus 13 holidays



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BOOMERS: How Much Vacation
Did You Take Last Year?
1.   4 or more weeks
2.   3 to 4 weeks
3.   1 to 2 weeks
4.   Less than 1 week




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GEN X/Y: How Much Vacation
Did You Take Last Year?
1.   4 or more weeks
2.   3 to 4 weeks
3.   1 to 2 weeks
4.   Less than 1 week




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             GEN X/Y: How Much Vacation Did You Take Last Year?


                                                                  25%
4 or more w...
                                                                  25%




                                                                  25%
 3 to 4 weeks
                                                                  25%




                                                                  25%
 1 to 2 weeks
                                                                  25%




                                                                  25%
Less than 1...
                                                                  25%


                                      Boomers   Gen X/Y




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How Much Do You
Telecommute?
1.   All the time
2.   Around half the time
3.   1 or 2 days a week
4.   Never – I like the free coffee at work



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Overachievement Has Seen Its
Day Come and Go
•   David McClelland discovered the three primary
    drivers for motivation:
    1. Achievement
    2. Affiliation
    3. Power (influence)
•   All three are present in everyone
•   McClelland and others argued achievement
    was the key to successful leadership
•   Created an interesting experiment to prove the
    point
•   Jack Welsh personified this leadership style
    (GE)

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The End Justifies the Means

• The achievement drive soon became the
  overachievement drive
• Cutting corners, cheating, whatever it took
• Nationally, it worked – stock market took off,
  productivity soared, innovation rose
• But the slow erosion of ethics took hold, and
  soon we got…



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Meet the Old Boss




               25
Tell-tale Signs Your Boss Is
an Overachiever
• Gives little positive feedback
• Impatient with under-performers
• Micromanages!
• Sets the pace and expects everyone to
  follow
• Totally goal-driven; people are secondary to
  the achievement of the goal



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Personal Power vs. Socialized
Power
Personalized Power           Socialized Power
• Controls                   • Persuades
• Manipulates and coerces    • Involves others; democratic
• Looks out for their own    • Focuses on the team
  interests




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Does Your Boss Use
Personalized or Social Power?
1. Personalized Power
2. Social Power
3. Sitting right next to me, so I am not
   answering



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The Legacy of McClelland and
Welsh
• The power of this leadership strategy
  created a “Survivor Tribunal” mentality:
  – Ranking your employees
  – Cutting the “weakest” from
    the tribe
  – Grow or die
  – Immediate goals more
    important than long-term
    ones


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Old Rules vs. New Rules

• Be the big, bad, dog     • Be agile and flexible
• Be #1 in your market     • Find your niche (Good
• Shareholders are in        to Great)
  charge                   • The customers are in
• Rank your staff, form      charge
  your “A Team”            • Hire passionate people
• Be charismatic           • Be courageous
• Admire our might         • Admire our soul



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Old Boss vs. New Boss

•   Pushes people          •   Motivates people
•   Dictates               •   Persuades
•   Manages                •   Leads
•   Angry                  •   Passionate
•   Coercive               •   Collaborative
•   Cares about numbers    •   Cares about people




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Becoming the New Boss Won’t
Be Easy
• Keep all leadership styles in your hip pocket,
  but know how to use them wisely
• Understand the differences in generation
  gaps
• Adapt to new technology and communication
  styles
• Let go of the old Boomer leadership
  principles and embrace new ones


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Create a Great Place to Work

• Allow new ideas into your policies
• Provide enough freedom for staff to make decisions
• Set the bar reasonably high and hold people
  accountable
• Reward staff continuously for excellent performance
• Be clear about expectations
• Stress the success of the team
• Be family friendly, all the time – to women and
  men!
• See www.greatplacetowork.com (US) and
  www.greatplacetowork.co.uk (UK)

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If you have a “boomer” boss who
uses personalized power, try
these out …
• Find out where your boss shops and buy exactly the
  same outfits. Always wear them one day after your boss
  does.
• Repeat every idea your boss expresses in a baby voice
  while moving your hand like a chattering mouth.
• Finish all your sentences with, “in accordance with
  prophecy.”
• Use a large hunting knife to point at your visual aids.
• In your next Progress Report, write:
     My Secret Agenda
      1. Trample the weak
      2. Triumph alone
      3. Invade Iran
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I Thought This Presentation
Was …
1. OMG LOL, he’s my BFF
2. It was okay
3. Sorry – I was asleep – what was the
   question again?
4. Is it happy hour YET?


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Bibliography and Sources of
Inspiration
•   Workplace Wars (Ladies Home Journal, May 2009)
•   Leadership Run Amok: The Destructive Potential of Overachievers. Scott Spreier, Mary Fontaine, and Ruth Malloy
    (Harvard Business Review, June 1, 2006)
•   What Leaders Really Do. John Kotter (Harvard Business Review, December 2001)
•   Tearing Up the Jack Welsh Playbook. Betsy Morris (Fortune, CNNMoney.com, July 11, 2006)
•   Great Xpectations of So-Called Slackers (Time.com, June 9, 1997)
•   Are Baby Boomers Killing Facebook and Twitter? (PC World, May 2009)
•   Gen Y in the Workforce (Harvard Business Review, February 2009)
•   Are You a Micromanager? (Federal Computer Week, October 20, 2008)
•   What Would Shakespeare Tweet? (USA Today, June 10, 2009)
•   Managing by Remote Control (Raleigh News and Observer, November 30, 2008)
•   Email Lives – But Do We Need It? (Federal Computer Week, July 13, 2009)
•   Are You a Micromanager? (Federal Computer Week, October 20, 2008)
•   10 Trends – A Study of Senior Executives’ Views on the Future (Center for Creative Leadership, White Paper)
•   What Gen Y Really Wants (Time Magazine, July 5, 2005)
•   A Nation Transformed by Women (The Progress Report, October 19, 2009)
•   No Rest for the Worked – Americans Prefer to be on the Job Rather than Taking Vacations (Philadelphia Inquirer,
    February 17, 2008)
•   Service Gap Fuels Shopping Tensions (Philadelphia Inquirer, December 25, 2007)
•   A Bad Boss Can Hurt Your Heart, Study Says (Boston Globe, November 30, 2008
•   Facebook – What is it Good for? (Federal Computer Week, April 20, 2009)
•   Generation X: The Ignored Generation? (Time.com, April 16, 2008)




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My Millennials …




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Questions? Complaints?




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