In 2020, it was a big resignation. This year is a “quiet retirement”. Regardless of what you call it, this is a symptom of a bigger problem. The workplace and the age-old traditions that have become synonymous with it are taking its toll on the workforce. Solutions start with leadership.
What do Joe Toubes, Susan Desmond-Hellmann, and Dan Gertsakov have in common? They all held senior-level leadership roles in well-known organizations (Honeywell, Gates Foundation, and Focus Foods, respectively). another thread that binds them? Each of them resigned from executive-level positions, citing personal well-being or health issues as the reason.
Earlier this year, Deloitte surveyed more than 2,000 employees and C-level executives in the US, UK, Australia and Canada and found that nearly 70% of senior managers are considering leaving.
they are not alone. Earlier this year, Deloitte surveyed more than 2,000 of her employees and her C-level executives in the US, UK, Australia and Canada and found that nearly 70% of him in senior management are considering leaving. I discovered that This is not surprising given the pervasive statistics on leadership and mental health. But the stress isn’t limited to the executive’s suite. Stressful leaders create stressful environments for their employees and, as a result, are widely known as toxic workplaces.
When considering solutions to worker shortages, lack of motivation, and unhealthy work environments, we must include solutions that address outdated views of organizational leadership.
Leadership has long been defined as idiosyncratic, exclusive, and sacrificial. The most common view of leadership comes in the form of idiosyncratic figures from certain demographics who are willing to prioritize roles over almost everything else. Even if it could, the changing dynamics of this country and workforce have made this style of leadership a relic of the past.
As we create work environments where all workers can thrive, old teaching methods are being tweaked and new models of healthier leadership are emerging.
One such model, intergenerational leadership, puts people from different generations into leadership positions, enabling a common and more holistic way of leading teams and organizations. Building on the foundations of the more approachable collaborative leadership model, intergenerational collaborative leadership offers organizations an innovative approach to address some of today’s most important workplace challenges.
5 reasons to practice cross-generational collaborative leadership
1. Make room for a growing workforce
The “Five Generation Workplace” is here. People are still working well into his 70s, and college graduates are looking to launch their careers. Many of them are doing it with the same company. Whereas traditional leadership models may value one generation over others and shut others out of job opportunities, intergenerational co-leadership harnesses the wisdom of multiple generations to ensure that both of workers can contribute to the organization in a meaningful way. No need to kick out older workers. Younger employees don’t have to wait their turn. Intergenerational joint leadership reimagines roles in ways that create space.
2. Support diversity, equity and inclusion
Recent years have seen an influx of women, blacks, indigenous peoples, and other people of color into leadership positions. being placed in these positions without the support, relationships, or resources of Additionally, age discrimination is a growing concern among workers, young and old. Intergenerational joint leadership embraces new leadership, removes barriers faced by the woman succeeding her white predecessor and her BIPOC, and creates an environment that levels the playing field for younger and older workers. It provides a mechanism to build.
3. Protect yourself against burnout and loneliness
The burden of leadership is well documented and widely acknowledged across sectors and leadership levels. For-profits, non-profits, and government departments all have their version of the old adage, “Lonely at the top.” This sentiment is just as felt in senior management as it is in middle management. This loneliness is not just a matter of feelings. Leadership loneliness is associated with stress that leads to poor health and burnout. Intergenerational joint leadership reduces loneliness and consequent burnout by shifting organizations from isolated leadership to shared leadership. Organizational leaders have partners at work, partners with whom they can shoulder the burden and give reprieve if necessary.
4. Offers built-in plans for migration and inheritance
The reality of many organizations is that people come and go. Even the most dedicated employees leave, founders move on to other projects, and changes in life require changes in jobs. Transfers and relocations are inevitable. Intergenerational joint leadership requires organizations to plan for the inevitable and deliver built-in solutions before they are needed. When more experienced leaders appoint deputy leaders, they have time to prepare stakeholders, voters, and teams for new leadership. In addition, new deputy leaders have the ability to lead in a less risky environment than if they stepped into the role alone, leading to better results. Ultimately, organizations experience less disruption as a result of personnel changes.
5. More sustainable and effective for big challenges
Perhaps the biggest reason for the cross-generational joint leadership model is that it provides a more holistic view of an organization’s work, giving way to more effective means of reaching core audiences. is. Many of the challenges facing organizations are generational in nature. Whether it’s a marketing company trying to find ways to market their products to a changing demographic, or an after-school program trying to enroll more participants. We rarely, if ever, find solutions to these workplace challenges from a generational point of view.
Workplaces that are serious about creating an environment in which employees can thrive may need new ways of teaching.
An effective and sustainable organization is one that has the ability to see things from multiple perspectives and allow those perspectives to drive decision making. If an organization over-relies on her one age-group reality, it can become trapped, unable to pivot, reach a wider audience, and ultimately become irrelevant. . Intergenerational joint leadership harnesses wisdom from multiple generations to create more inclusive solutions to big challenges in an authentic and sustainable way.
For many organizations, leadership has become synonymous with the lone human being who may be able to take on the toughest challenges and survive, but is certainly not successful. Even now, as the narrative has changed and mental health has become a key focus in the workplace, we have not validated our beliefs about leadership and adjusted our practices to include healthier ones. .
However, in workplaces that are serious about creating an environment where employees can thrive, new methods of coaching may be needed. Intergenerational joint leadership has several advantages over traditional leadership models. With built-in succession and sustainability plans, intent on diversity issues, and embracing a changing workforce, intergenerational joint leadership can be more than innovation. It may indeed be the future of work.
Sherreta R. Harrison and Raymond A. Jetson demonstrate cross-generational joint leadership at MetroMorphosis, a social enterprise in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.