Baby Boomers, builders, generation X, generation Y, millennials – so many generations! What does it all mean? How do they fit together in the workplace? In this episode of The 5 Leadership Questions podcast Todd Adkins, Brad Lomenick, and I discuss the differences in leadership styles between generations. We hash through the following.
- What are the stereotypes of each generation’s leadership? Which are accurate?
- What are the shortcomings of each generation’s leadership style?
- What should baby boomers learn from younger leaders?
- What should millennials learn from older leaders?
- How can older, established leaders help younger leaders prepare to be in charge?
“The great thing [for millennials] and the bad thing is that they’ll be coming into a marketplace increasingly based upon on outcomes and not hours.”
“You have to be a learner because it’s all changing so quickly.”
“There were a lot fewer opportunities for immediate success for a boomer at 25.”
“A 25 year old looks at the world and says ‘I can do anything, and if I don’t like it I’ll go do something else.’”
“”[For boomers] there’s that whole hierarchical system of ‘you have to work your way up.’”
“If the expectation is that you come in at the bottom and work your way up, while that’s equitable, it doesn’t take into account that some people are just really, really good and are better at the job than those who are more experienced.”
“Hierarchy suppresses productivity by keeping gifted people and driven people in a position of minimal impact.”
“It’s one thing to sit through this many hours of lecture on a subject; it’s another thing to display proficiency in it.”
“A ton of wisdom comes with experience and a ton of humility comes with experience because you take your knocks.”
“Now days it’s more about ‘I led because I’m beside my team; I’m with my team in the trenches.’”
“The downside of pursuing your passions is that you overlook things you really ought to have been doing.”
“Work the job you’re not crazy about to create the opportunities you are crazy about.”
“Wherever you are crush your responsibilities in what you’re doing then you’ll have a little bit of margin to do something on the side.”
“Your now will ultimately determine your next and if you crush it in the now the next will take care of itself.”
“Disrespecting a leader who’s been put over you, no matter how incompetent, reflects more poorly on you than it does on them.”
“Part of the job of younger leaders is to show up with their pen in their hand and their moleskine and learn.”
“Your posture is part of the barrier to being taught.”
“Part of our responsibility if we’re older is to invest in the younger. That’s not an extra credit assignment; it’s a basic assignment of leadership.”
“Take young leaders with you.”
Generations at Work by Ron Zemke, Claire Raines, & Bob Filipczak
The Millennials by Thom and Jess Rainer