Talkin’ about those boomers

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MEM­BERS of Gen­er­a­tion X make the best lead­ers be­cause they are not ob­sessed with au­thor­ity, tend to re­spect oth­ers and know how to spell.

Baby boomers are un­fit to lead be­cause they still think wire­less is a term for a ra­dio and want to rule the world, while Gen­er­a­tion Y sub­sti­tutes tweet­ing and Face­book for real hu­man in­ter­ac­tion.

An Aus­tralian In­sti­tute of Man­age­ment de­bate be­tween co­me­dian Kitty Flana­gan and busi­ness direc­tor Marty Switzer ar­rived at th­ese ‘‘ find­ings’’, al­though they may not be so far from the truth.

‘‘ We re­spect our el­ders and we also ap­pre­ci­ate the weird, won­der­ful and wacky mo­ti­va­tions of Gen­er­a­tion Y,’’ Switzer says. ‘‘ We are the per­fect gen­er­a­tion to un­der­stand and re­spect all gen­er­a­tions, re­gard­less of their faults – which demon­strates why we are the best lead­ers.’’

Flana­gan com­pared the lead­er­ship style of baby boomers to dic­ta­tors but saved her sharpest barbs for those born be­tween 1980 and 1995.

‘‘ Gen­er­a­tion Y, you are not ready yet; you are still mak­ing mis­takes. Your time will come,’’ she says.

Lead­er­ship Man­age­ment Aus­trala­sia re­search says only 17 per cent of baby boomers pre­fer to work with their own gen­er­a­tion. And gen­er­a­tions X and Y also rate baby boomers as the worst group to work with and take or­ders from.

LMA ex­ec­u­tive chair­man Grant Sex­ton says baby boomers are now the chal­lenge in work­places, es­pe­cially those in lead­er­ship po­si­tions.

‘‘ The pres­sure is on baby boomers to in­vent or rein­vent them­selves so (other gen­er­a­tions) feel com­fort­able work­ing with them,’’ he says.

– Ben Pike

CHANGE UP: Other gen­er­a­tions find baby boomers the most chal­leng­ing at work.

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