Three generations of nurses are currently working together to improve the health of millions of Americans. Though the quality of their care may not differ, their personalities and thought processes do. When working with those who possess differences in personality and beliefs, things can get tough. Nurses learning to work better with coworkers from other generations can improve the environment for patients and employees alike.
Of the nurses currently in the workplace, 50 percent are Baby Boomers, 30 percent are part of Generation X and 19 percent are millennials according to Bradley University. Each generation has different morals, work ethics, ways of communicating and all sorts of other behavioral quirks.
Millennials are often looked at as the new, less competent kids on the block. Baby Boomers, as a whole, have shown disdain for millennials since they joined the workforce. The masses also feel millennials are entitled and on a quest for self promotion and advancement. As with all generalizations, this does not apply to all or even most of this generation. Most millennials in the nursing field are nothing but ready to work hard and help others. If other generations are willing to accept millennials and play to their strengths, like technology and flexibility, the work day will go a lot smoother.
On Generation X
Most nurses from Generation X are independent and have a tendency to question new practices or authority figures. If Generation Xers are given the opportunity to build community within their jobs and be involved in major decisions, they will be much happier. Other employees should know that Generation X nurses enjoy their space and to respect that, but at the same time, be willing to create meaningful relationships despite their differences.
On Baby Boomers
More often than not, baby boomers and millennials struggle to get along in a work setting. Baby Boomers are not fully happy with their jobs and they aren’t privy to the shift into the digital age. Since millennials were raised and taught in the digital age, the two generations often butt heads. Other nurses should ask Baby Boomers for tips and advice, since they are the most seasoned workers on the floor. If other generations respect and make an effort to understand Baby Boomers and how they think, the efforts will be returned.
A team of nurses with three generations can make positive changes in the lives of others when working together effectively. If each generation makes an effort to begin to integrate into a new crowd, the results can be remarkable. If you are a nurse ready to take on the challenges of the workforce, contact an Alliance Solutions Group recruiter for career assistance.