I am pleased to support my fellow Generations Expert and San Diegan, Dan Negroni, by sharing some of his tips with you in this post.
We all catch ourselves complaining about the “other” generation—millennials, boomers, Xers, you name it. Dan says:
- STOP pointing out problems and saying others are the problem.
- START asking yourself, “What about me is not connecting and getting results? What am I doing to widen and maintain this gap?”
Remember the expression “it takes two to tango?” That means we all need to own up to our part in the generational disconnect. Dan suggests looking inside yourself to figure out who you are as a unique individual (not just a stereotypical member of a generation) and use that to connect with a unique individual member of another generation. To do that, he suggests the following.
People in each generation must first understand their individual skills, strengths, passions and values. This groundwork allows you to then inspire, create common ground on a deeper emotional level and connect with whomever you’re speaking to. Here are 3 powerful questions to get you started so you can bridge the gap between your generations today:
- Who am I? Where was I born? Where do I come from? Who is my family? What is my background—my family identity? What am I grateful for? What and who have made me who I am?
- What is my experience? What work have I done? What am I inspired and motivated by? What am I passionate for and about? What have I had to overcome, and what are my triumphs?
- What value do I bring? What am I good at? What are my special skills? What has made me unique and special? Why do people love me, and what do I do to maintain that? What kind of attitude do I have? What can I do for others? What about me makes me a “bad ass” and successful that is not about my technical experience?
Knowing yourself and answering these questions will help you craft an authentic story so you can forge genuine connections with your workforce. Remember, your story isn’t a script—it’s a framework for interacting and connecting with people.
For more on this topic, check out Dan Negroni’s new book, Chasing Relevance, or connect with him on his website.