FWB – Different Generations and How They Impact Your Business

(This post is from another Jessie blog, Fourth Wave Business, and is republished here for your enjoyment!)

Good afternoon!  Today I want to share with you a few pearls of wisdom that I learned from a business presentation that I attended last night.

I’m part of the American Business Women’s Association – I’m the Vice President and Membership Chair of my local league, the Ringling Chapter of Sarasota, FL.  We’re a great group of diverse active and retired business women.  We meet once a month to learn, network and catch up with each other.  We do a lot of work with local and national scholarships which is a great asset to our community.  I love it.  I’ve been a member for 3 years – but I grew up with the chapter since my mom has been a member for many many years.  Once a month we have our educational programs covering topics from healthy living, current business trends, and anything affecting women or business in the modern world.

Last night Daniel Bloom of DBAI Consulting spoke to us about generational differences that exist in the workforce today as well as the ones that will exist in the future.  It was chock full of good information so I thought I would share some with you.  He referenced the book “The M Factor” by Lynne C. Lancaster and David Stillman.The synopsis that I gathered from his presentation was that ‘millenials’ are a great influence within our workforce and they are different from previous generations in many ways.  I’m part of Gen Y – which I didn’t know (there’s too many generations named with letters of the alphabet to keep track of) and his presentation gave me a little more information not only about my own generation but how to relate to others as well.

As a generalization the Traditionalists are looking to build a legacy and appreciate the chain of command.  The next generation, the Baby Boomers, changed that chain of command and have affected every market that they entered.  Generation X (from 1965-1980) are looking for a portable career, they want freedom and will go anywhere (or to any job) to find it.

MY generation, the Y’s represent!, is the most connected and tech-savvy.  Born from 1981 to 1999, we’re looking for our work to have MEANING.  We want two successful careers – our working one and our personal one.  We multi-task like a fox and feel empowered to take action.  Dan explained that my generation needs to know who we are in our company/business and why we’re there.  If these two things aren’t clear we’re likely to leave the job within 18 months – which costs companies A LOT of money.  I’m super fortunate to count myself as one of those lucky few who enjoy their 9-5 job.  My job has meaning, I like my company, my coworkers are pretty rad and I feel a challenge is most of my work.  Yes, my ultimate goal is to be running my own business by the time I’m 35 (5.5 years from now, I have time!) but in the meantime I understand the importance of a career that I enjoy.  Anyway – enough of my personal jazz, on to the information sharing! . . .

Regeneration, or Generation Z, is coming into the workforce soon and they will be more connected, more tech-savvy, and more diverse than any other generation.  Have you seen what kids can do these days??  10-year-olds developing apps and stuff – CRAZY!  The freaking internet was brand new when I was 10!!  Just imagine what this new generation will bring to the table – new businesses, smarter operations, connected commerce, and perhaps robot unicorns.  The sky is the limit!

What generation are YOU?  What do you think that means to your business?

You can check out Daniel Bloom’s website here.

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