Understanding Generations



Our HR & Operations Managers Julia West recently attended a seminar hosted by The Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry on Leadership Diversity. The purpose of the seminar was to learn how we can stay connected and understand the differences not only in our workforce but for our diverse clients too. Here’s what she thought of the event.

As a sales and service provider the acronym POS to me means point of sale, right? Well that clearly shows you my age, and if you are thinking what on earth do I mean then you are likely to fit somewhere between a baby boomer and a millennial. However, for the new tech savvy Gen z and alphas POS refers to parent over shoulder? WOW, no wonder my nieces and nephews think I am old!

Currently we are in a historic era for business as for the first time we are finding many companies have up to five different generations working together. As managers we are required to adjust our business practices to encompass the new expectations in the workplace to ensure we are moving forward with the times. But I ask you, how do we as a business and leaders connect to multi generations when we are clearly on different playing fields?

Without sounding like a dinosaur, we have shifted from having a job for life to having multiple careers let alone jobs. For anyone born in the Xennials or prior we grew up in a world before technology, I personally remember being the first house in our street with a colour TV, and we had 3 channels that you turned a dial to switch between, yes that’s right there was no remote-control device. And I respect that for my grandparents the mere thought of TV was a mere pipe dream they were still amazed that we could send voice through waves of electromagnetic radiation radio as we know it. Well advance a few generations and the kids of today can’t even imagine life without their smart phone permanently attached to them.

So, the struggle for many businesses like us is bridging the gap between the generations to ensure our workplace fosters a workforce who are engaging and diverse, where communication flows, and hopefully we understand the communication that we are getting!

For the management team here at Fort Knox we are constantly researching new initiatives and strategies to ensure we are keeping up with the times and developing new processes BAE (before anyone else) to ensure we are keeping up with the forever changing world while having a competitive edge.

While workplace change is inevitable in todays fast growing technological era workplace change is the fastest its ever been and its not slowing down anytime soon. With this in mind we are having to alter our mindsets and changing our delivery of communication to ensure our audience is understanding the message we are sending. Creating a diverse culture where we nurture and encourage growth for us is just the start. Finding the right balance between youth and experience is a great way to ensure we are adaptable.

With a range of fabulous guest speakers including MC Claire Madden, and presenters Patty McCord, Dominic Price, Tom Goodwin, James Pearson, Claudia Shepherd, Ben Gould, Cyan Ta’eed and Lauren Threthowan we have taken away a wealth of advice, knowledge and expertise that we will be deciphering over the coming weeks and hopefully improving our skills and knowledge in this fast and exciting era.

And while personally I am a huge fan of a paper diary and writing stuff down I have to concede that digital calendars and cloud-based programs are in fact more productive and enable me to prioritise and find things much faster. However, I am clinging on tightly to my paperback books and I am not ready for digital books just yet, I like to think this is my touchy-feely personality and not stubborn old age. In fact I purchased a paper back book on the day, which is keeping me company in bed at night and I highly recommend you read it!

For more information on any of the speakers or how you can improve your team’s diversity and productivity contact the Melbourne Chamber of Commerce and industry on https://www.victorianchamber.com.au/