With the changing of the times, comes the eventuality of succession. Baby boomers (people born between 1946-1960) have begun stepping down from the active job market. It is essential that society realizes the impact of this process.
Questions abound, including the foreseeable lapses in the job sectors and shifts in work ethics and practices. These are factors that leave a profound impact upon the strata of society and perhaps none is as greatly affected as that of academia. After all, it is the educators who are partly responsible for transgenerational intellectual growth and development. The responsibility is a heavy one, which explains why succession planning is a crucial matter.
Millennials and Baby Boomers The preponderance in the workforce, touted as millennials (individuals born between the 1980s and late 1990s), are motivated by contrasting factors to those of baby boomers. In bridging the generational gap, baby boomers should understand that encouragement, work flexibility, and career advancement opportunities are all perceived by Millennials as vital occupational aspects.
Work cultures adapt to the ongoing paradigm shift as older mentalities peter out. Baby boomers are diligent individuals who link extensive working hours with success and may dismiss the priority for work-life balances in younger people as frivolous ideals.
University establishments should cater their approach towards employees according to the changes in societal mentalities.
The Long and Short of Things
Baby boomers originate from a time when the world was still reeling from the chaos of war, when college enrollment and jobs were highly competitive due to booming births. Dedicating decades of pure hard work to a single company was common for long-term security and pension payouts.
Millennials believe in devoting time towards self-conservation and following their personal pathways set for themselves. Opportunities have become more common than they used to be. The independence means that establishments must emphasize on the well-being of staff and inculcate a sense of development and belonging to retain their services.
As a result of their philosophy, millennials focus on short-term gains and supervisors from the baby boomer generation should pay heed to those predispositions.
Combining Talents A great strategy in connecting both generations is through the development of mentorship programs. Baby boomers could offer their accumulated knowledge with upcoming academics, who will proceed to finetune existing practices with fresh perspectives. Younger staff will craft out-of-the-box thought processes while senior advisors facilitate the handover process. Millennials will have their contributions validated while baby boomers conduct their mentor roles.
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