The full title is [u]When Generations Collide: Who They Are. Why They Clash. How to Solve the Generational Puzzle at Work[/u].
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I am still reading this book, but so far it has been really great.

I was born in '77, and am categorized as a Gen-X'er, but I'm on the cusp of Millenial (Gen-Y). In my line of work, I'm always working with people at least 10 years older than I am. The case where I encounter someone within 5 years of my age is very rare.

I feel that this book really elucidates principles that are inherent to many of the manager tools podcasts.

For example, the book illustrates a case where a [i]baby boomer[/i] and [i]traditionalist[/i] have a small disagreement because the traditionalist does not want to share information with the baby boomer.

This reminded me of a manager-tools podcast on the subject of sharing information during a merger/acquisition. Mike (I think) basically said that information should be shared without regard for role or position.

In addition, the make the case that there will be a lot of demand for talent in the future. Things may not be broken, but a company that understands these dynamics in the workforce can use it as a competetive advantage.

This is also a re-ocurring manager-tools theme: You don't have to be perfect, but if you're better at something than all your peers, it is a huge competetive advantage.

Mark's picture
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While I have read this book and found it helpful, I also want to share again that generationalization one's relationships isn't nearly as good as DiSC, which is a form or personalizing, or actually thinking about the person you are communicating to.

I see the generational approach as being a blunt instrument for those who don't want to have individual relationships...


TomW's picture
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That's an interesting point, Mark.

You guys have turned into a huge fan of DISC and I'm slowly starting to work it in, especially with the people who I have had a hard time communicating with in the past.

When you have someone who is reluctant to share information, either directly ("Can I have that information", "No, you cannot") or indirectly ("I'm not going to let them know this information even exists"), how can a younger person draw it out from them?

Is that still a DISC/communication issue?

edwin_park's picture

Born in '72. Definitely Gen-X.

I think DISC is a much better model than generational model. The book is good, but don't make generalizations. Use it as an extra tool.

I had a medium-large group of various ages. Some of them quite young. First, if the DR were born out of the country, the generational distinction are not the same as it is in the US. Also, there is huge overap between Gen-X and Gen-Y. If you are looking to see if a cusp'er is more like Gen-X or Gen-Y, ask if their parents were laid-off in their childhood. I found the correlation to be darn scary.