Generational shift - the modern workplace! Management gurus and marketing specialists have long since been fascinated by the changing population. You can see this interest via a quick Google search. There are millions of articles on Baby Boomers, Generation X, Millennials and now Generation Z.

Whilst organisations have done little to accommodate the shifting generations in the past, this strategy is now having negative consequences in the workplace. By 2020, Millennials will be 50% of the workforce and by 2024 there will be twice as many women aged over 55 than women aged between 16 and 24 (The Bureau of Labour Statistics).

Some organisations are seeing 5 generations within the workplace. The Pew Research defines the generations as thus:

  • The Silent Generation: Born 1928-1945 (73-90 years old)
  • Baby Boomers: Born 1946-1964 (54-72 years old)
  • Generation X: Born 1965-1980 (38-53 years old)
  • Millennials: Born 1981-1996 (22-37 years old)
  • Generation Z: Born 1997-Present (0-21 years old)

This is making the workplace more complex because each generation views the world differently and responds to and leads differently. Most organisations are still set up in ways that are complimentary to Baby Boomers. Whilst Generation Xers didn't like this set up, they mostly didn't complain about it. They tried to fit in and find minor subtle ways to change the organisation to their liking.

Mavericks excepted of course!

The Maverick Leader

Dealing with a relatively small proportion of Mavericks in an organisation is one thing. Having an increasing level of Millennial Maverick Behaviourists (soon to be joined by Gen Z) is quite another!

(Click on the Millennial Picture below for The Millennial Question pdf)

(Click the quote for the Maverick Paradox pdf)

This calls for a Maverick Leader. A leader that understands how to truly lead in these volatile times.

In the past individuals have been taught leadership techniques and when to apply them in the work arena. This has provided some success as long as the leadership technique was applied under the right economic or environment situation.

Most leadership techniques or styles are a product of their environment. (For example, no one would apply McGregor's Theory X - Theory Y leadership theory today). Situational Leadership theory, is perhaps one of the most popular leadership theories, closest to providing the flexibility required for modern leadership.

The greatest flaw of most leadership theories is that they ignore the leader himself, or the fact that a true leader is a leader everywhere. Leadership ability is not restricted to the workplace!

Mavericks have always insisted, and Millennials and Gen Z are increasingly requiring, integrity within their leaders. A sense of authentic, integrated 'wholeness'. So true leadership is about character as well as competence. Very much, what you DO and WHO you are.

Leadership Styles

Leadership styles that encourage a divorce between work and non-work personas will not provide a sense of fulfilment or success in the modern world. Neither will they truly lead the different generations of workers into an integral, committed, and engaged community.

Maverick DRIVEN Leadership™ is a way of life, not a formal process.

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All generational groups respond to Maverick Leaders who lead in this way and have fully understood the Maverick Paradox.

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Maverick Leaders appreciate that they need to be congruent and naturally eschew any 'tradition' that is not fit for purpose. They relate to people as individuals so will ensure that they leadership style is exactly what is needed for the individual or team before them.

They will love the fact that there is so much diversity in the generational workplace and will enjoy leading a mixed expectation and requirement group. Maverick Leaders are mindful of stereotypes that aren't helpful and will seek the truth of the individual in all circumstances.

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