Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Key differences between Boomers, Gen X, and Gen Y

If you're a coach with players who were born in the 1980s or 1990s (i.e., "Gen Y" or "Millenials"), there's a good article in Forbes magazine called "Managing the Generations" that's interesting and could be helpful in understanding the mindset of younger players.

According to the article, while Boomers (people born between 1946-64) say they're fine with interacting with their boss twice a year, and Gen Xers (born 1965-80) are ok with talking with the boss a couple of times a week, those from Gen Y are more likely to want interaction with the boss "twice an hour."

"Ys are learning. They want the boss to coach, to guide. Boomers look as it as judging. Xers are different still. They see these interactions with the boss as getting validation. Learning [is important to Gen Y]. The most important thing to do with Ys is give them tasks that are truly challenging. Give them enough rope to figure it out as they go."

[Thanks to Scott S. for forwarding this article from the Harvard Business Review about generational differences. Click here to download the PDF file.]