Understanding Different Generations in the Workplace

A recap of AWCNJ’s February networking and educational event.

Laurel Bernstein

Laurel Bernstein, president of Executive Coaching

AWCNJ recently hosted a fascinating and informative presentation by Laurel Bernstein, Executive Coach, titled “Millennials, Gen-Xers, Boomers and the Silent Generation: How to Communicate So Everyone Understands.”

Held at Leone’s in Montclair on a wintry February evening, attendees networked with friends and colleagues over a delicious Italian dinner, and learned about the four generations in the workplace — Silent Generation (“Matures”), Baby Boomers (“Boomers”), Generation X (“Gen-Xers”) and Generation Y (“Millennials”) (Click here for more details). In addition, a lively discussion followed after the presentation about how each generation has impacted all of us at work.

During her talk, Laurel provided some insights on how members of each generation have been shaped by the world they grew up in and specific events in their formative years, all of which affect their work life and growth. This is the reason why communication between generations is often such a struggle—they communicate so differently and value different things.

She also kept attendees entertained by adding some enlightening and amusing anecdotes, including a story about the generational differences between herself (on the cusp between the Matures and Baby Boomers) and her Gen-Xer son.

So how can we communicate and work better with generations other than our own? Laurel recommends trying to understand what makes other generations tick, appreciate and embrace the best attributes of each, and to have a “give-and-take” approach between generations.

We thank Laurel for this informative and engaging event—it helped us understand ourselves, the other generations, and will help us better communicate so everyone understands, no matter what generation!

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