Work relationships are one of the biggest causes of job stress or satisfaction. And with four generations now working side by side, relationship-building is more important than ever. Effective communication is the key to any successful relationship, and learning how to navigate generational gaps can help you build better work relationships.
Follow these communication tips to engage with coworkers of every age:
- Veterans (b. 1922-1945)
Veterans respect authority, adhere to rules, and can be uncomfortable with change. Make sure any important information is communicated in writing, and that printed materials and memos are formal and serious in tone. Veterans also appreciate a personal approach, and taking the time to schedule face-to-face meetings and one-on-one interactions throughout the year will help foster good relationships.
- Baby Boomers (b. 1946-1964)
Boomers are social, service-oriented, and driven to succeed. Simple, straightforward language and communication in person or over the phone will produce the best results. Boomers also like to receive information and resources in multiple formats. In addition to in-person conversations, reach out and follow up with online communications to ensure mutual understanding.
- Generation X (b. 1965-1980)
Gen Xers are independent, adaptable, and strive for work-life balance. To accommodate this working style, use email and online platforms for direct, concise communication. Making information and resources available through self-directed online tools is also a good way to ensure Gen Xers have access to what they need to get the job done.
- Millennials (b. 1981-2000)
Millennials are goal-oriented multi-taskers with a desire to do it all. The best way to reach them is to limit in-person communications and go high-tech. Utilize as many mobile and social communication methods as possible to share information – social media, texting, instant messaging and apps. Millennials also like to feel like contributors, and will appreciate online resources and forums for open feedback, questions, and comments.
How do you create camaraderie at work? Share work relationship tips with us on Twitter! @ACISpecBenefits
If financial, emotional or other personal issues are interfering with daily life, it may help to reach out to your confidential employee assistance program (EAP), ACI Specialty Benefits. To speak with a clinician and receive personalized support, contact 800.932.0034 or firstname.lastname@example.org. EAP services are also available to all family members – even those out-of-state.