Baby boomers and millennials have grown up in very different times, with many new technologies and with drastically different ideas of how to prioritize their work lives. For instance, the older generation respected those who worked hard by staying late. A younger generation believes itself more efficient and that staying late just means time has been managed poorly. These differences can lead to serious communication problems in the workplace.
While millennials are expected to compose 50 percent of the workforce by 2020, companies must be keenly aware of how to make sure these employees mix well with long-time workers. Here are five ways that video can help older and younger generations communicate better in the workplace.
- Millennials are often considered the “on demand” generation. On their own time outside work hours, they can watch video seminars, presentations and classes via video.
- An older generation may find that learning new technology is intimidating. Being taught in person by someone younger may feel awkward. Instead, a video training session doesn’t make anyone feel uneasy.
- A video allows someone additional time and many takes to get the messaging or instruction just right for the intended audience. Explaining something in person can lead to an unnecessarily long conversation and a waste of company resources.
- Meeting via video conference is pretty standard now, often more efficient, saving time and resources. A survey by communications firm West Unified found that baby boomers and millennials are more attentive during a video call.
- Video is such a great medium for communicating ideas. You can use it to educate the older generation easily about work styles of younger generations without a blow to a manager’s ego. For example, giving managers insight into a millennial’s use of Twitter may help them understand that it’s a great medium to source new sales leads, not a waste of company time. This might not be obvious to someone who has used only cold calling and email to find new clients.
There is a definite generational divide among employees at companies of all sizes. Video is a powerful medium that can be used to close those gaps and help younger and older employees communicate better with one another.