Your Secret Weapon You May Be Misusing

August 03, 2018 0 Comments

What Leaders Must Know About Leveraging the Diversity of the Baby Boomer Generation
By Dr. Paul L. Gerhardt, PhD
The generation of people born between the years of 1946 to 1964 is generally termed as “Baby Boomers”. In developed countries, especially in the U.S., Baby Boomers make up a considerable percentage of the population. They were the leading majority at 20% till very recently the percentage of millennials surpassed them. Due to their large numbers, many businesses make it a priority to target their schemes and plans towards the Baby Boomer generation.

For a leader to be successful, it is essential for them to know how to handle this senior generation of people. The first step to leveraging the diversity of the baby boomer generation is maintaining transparency during leadership meetings. By transparency, we mean discussing plans, initiatives and policies with them freely before coming to a decision. Their opinions are extremely valuable and have been formed out of years and years in the corporate business. Tons of experience weight down the Baby Boomers’ resume. By hiding something from them, you will not be gaining opinions which have the potential to make or break sales.
Moreover, it may lead to a mindset that you as a leader do not trust your employees with information. Baby Boomers are the senior generation and they will not take such behavior lightly. They will stand by you through hardship, doubt, and every bad storm if given proper respect and honor. However, slighting them by hiding information will make you lose their loyalties in the blink of an eye.
Withholding organizational information should also be limited to encourage innovation. As we stated before, the Baby Boomers hold a lot more years of experience and lessons over the rest of the board. By using their knowledge and combining it with new ideas, a company can gain a radically new idea which can succeed in our competitive marketplace. Sharing information openly also enhances mutual understanding and builds relations among the leader and Baby Boomer employees.
These people respect good values and will be loyal to a genuinely honest employer with their lives. By strengthening bonds with them, a leader can be sure to gain reliable and trustworthy employees who will stick with the business for many more years to come. Unlike the younger generations, Baby Boomers do not have the job-hopping mindset; they are indeed a valuable type of employee.
Increased mutual understanding leads to better communication and a faster achievement of organizational goals. A company is like a well-oiled machine – when all the parts know their own purpose and function and also has a clear, defined understanding of the roles and limitations of the rest f the parts, it will work in a smooth and efficient manner. Baby Boomers need to know their own purpose as well as the purpose of the other organizational employees to be of the most use to their managers.
Allied together with the rest of the workforce, the leader will soon find that his or her team is rapidly advancing in the right direction and fulfilling the organizations goals. Great leaders must always show genuine appreciation for each person on their team. Everyone can bring value if invited to do so and properly nourished.
It is wise to remember that people who quit their jobs, generally do so because their boss failed to give them the support, coaching and appreciation needed. So, do not forget to take time to recognize each individual and what they have to offer. Sometimes it just takes a few minutes to learn something from a member of your team that can make such a significant difference. The loss of a team member means lost knowledge, experience, colleagues, talent, customers, and possibly market-share.
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Dr. Paul Gerhardt is a tenured professor of management. He is a diversity and leadership well-respected and trusted trainer who helps organizations get amazing returns on investment. Dr. Gerhardt is the author of several publications available on, including Diversity at Work, The Diversity King; Leadership Lucy and the new upcoming Leadership Handbook. Consider inviting Dr. Paul Gerhardt to do customized leadership or diversity training at your organization. Most organizations find that diversity and leadership training by the right trainer yields a significant instant return on investment. You can get your FREE COPY of the Leadership Handbook by clicking this link:


Some say he’s half man half fish, others say he’s more of a seventy/thirty split. Either way he’s a fishy bastard.