Generation synergy: successful collaboration with Gen Z
“Actions speak louder than words. Show what you can do first before voicing high expectations.” – Quote from a Gen Xer
Collaborating with Gen X can be challenging for young talent. Discover these 5 tips on how to collaborate effectively and bridge the generation gap.
Colleagues as teachers
ChatGPT and TikTok serve as information sources, but applying and further exploring what you learn there happens in the workplace. Experienced colleagues (Gen X and Boomers) have significantly more experience than you. So, don’t hesitate to ask for concrete advice on topics or projects. Be curious, inquire about their experiences and past mistakes, and learn from their approaches. This is the most effective way to enrich your skills. Figuring things out on your own often takes much longer.
To earn trust and build rapport with Gen X colleagues, you need to be present at the office. Especially in the beginning when you know few people. With your unique personality and by delivering good work, you gain the trust of your colleagues. Achieve that? Then you can work more autonomously and remotely. Creating this trust takes time, but it’s necessary for a strong long-term relationship.
Learn by listening
Ask questions and listen to your colleagues‘ expertise. After graduating, you have a wealth of new information and strong digital knowledge. Yet, don’t underestimate how much there still is to learn. While your knowledge is valuable, recognize that the generations above you possess years of experience and expertise. Stay open to continuing to learn and grow from them.
Proactivity & professionalism = a double win
Thoroughly prepare for meetings and avoid generation-specific jargon. Show your willingness to work hard and let your team know they can rely on you for support. Transmitting this attitude sends a positive signal to your colleagues, resulting in a more effective and productive collaboration. Be a reliable and valuable team player who’s always ready to assist and contribute to the team’s success. This also forges a strong bond with your colleagues.
Wireless engagement: active office presence
There’s a significant difference between physically being present and genuinely being engaged. Intentionally not keeping your earphones in signals your openness to communication in the office. This not only fosters collaboration but also demonstrates your genuine involvement. Active presence involves more than just participating in conversations, brainstorming sessions, and team activities. It also means actively listening, offering input, and showing that you value your colleagues‘ opinions.
Ready for a fruitful collaboration with Gen X
If you can put these tips into practice, it’s entirely possible as young talent to establish a productive and harmonious collaboration with your older colleagues! The ultimate tip? Blend their knowledge and experience with your unique perspectives and skills, and be amazed at how it positively influences your way of working!