Monday, August 29, 2011

The differences between Gen X and Gen Y

By: Lori McMullin, APR, Director of Business Operations & Communications

Center for Business Excellence

Today’s blog focuses on the differences between Gen X and Gen Y, two of the largest groups in today’s workforce as well as budding and current leadership. This topic has been bubbling around in my Gen X mind for the past few weeks.

I was recently at a gathering primarily dominated by Gen Yers. We were having a nice time, and then I noticed something happening…name-dropping, conversation domination and flashiness.

One young person came up to me and introduced herself (for the fifth time), then went on her merry way. Nice! It was as if I were invisible.

Over the years, I’ve learned taking it down a few notches is really a better tactic. I don’t try to put on airs or act self-important. Keeping it real is what I try to do. I guess that comes from being knocked down a peg or two a few times on the road of life. It’s too bad for that young person. I am someone in our community she really should get to know better.

That all said, I ask you, is it really any different than it was 15 or 20 years ago? Funny how things come full circle. Here’s what I mean.

I moved back to the Daytona Beach area in my late 20s to take a highly visible fund raising position. A huge gala was part of my responsibility. Seasoned Baby Boomer volunteers were already in place upon my arrival.

I was given a directive to grow the event and thought I was approaching the task with enthusiasm and expertise. Looking back on it, I probably came in like a know-it-all battering ram! For that, I apologize to the many of you out there who handled it gracefully!

Bottom line, coming to a better understanding of different generations can only help us get along better, respect each other more and allow us to complement each other’s efforts to make meaningful change in the world.

So, check out this link regarding Gen X and Gen Y, then check out my other link to keep in your mind as a mantra:

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