What CAN we and SHOULD we learn from the baby boomers


  • Boomers know verbal communication is king: As the workplace continues to evolve, and personalized trumps virtual connection, employers are going to be looking for people who can make connections over the phone and make a positive impression. Boomers have the verbal skills and the confidence to express their ideas in a variety of mediums, unlike their younger counterparts who haven’t developed the phone skills and etiquette native to Boomers. [1]


  • Boomers approach problems differently: Older workers bring many years of experience, usually spanning several different jobs, with them to work each day. With that experience, they also bring understanding and a certain pragmatism to the corporate world. They’ve learned there is simply no “end of the world,” unfixable problem. In many cases, Boomers will offer alternate viewpoints to discussions, which can be helpful for teams who are brainstorming or problem-solving. [1]
  • Boomers embrace and welcome change: boomers have welcomed new technology and have been the driving force behind it’s initial acceptance. From the Internet to Smartphones, Boomers have learned to use a variety of innovations and have accepted them as necessary tools in the workplace and at home. As the workplace continues to evolve, and as HR teams strive to create a better employee experience, organizations may find that Boomers are more adept at change and more accepting of new ways of doing things. [1]
  • Baby boomers are both optimistic and realistic: US Baby boomers were raised on the American dream, but as Pew research found, the fact that this generation grew up in the idealistic ‘60s, only to lag behind other generations in life satisfaction, means many baby boomers have become realists. However, in the workplace, that can then translate into a belief that nothing is gained without hard work and determination. [2]


  • Boomers are willing to reinvent themselves: Throughout their careers, most Baby Boomers have likely reinvented themselves, or gone through significant career changes, crossroads, or challenges at some point. Self reinvention is a trait that Boomers and Millennials have in common. In fact, a LinkedIn study found that Millennials jump jobs an average of four times in their first decade out of college. If Boomers are still in the workforce today, they’ve likely improved the skills necessary to do their job and hold leadership roles in organizations. Boomers, more than their younger counterparts, are likely more willing to be flexible thinkers and willing to consider opinions and points of view that differ from their own. [1]


  • Baby boomers pride themselves on decision-making skills: The hard work and focus of the baby boomer generation means many boomers value objective and rational decision-making. The right decision is rarely the easy one, but clear and objective planning can help them make their choice. Baby boomers bring to the workplace some of the stoicism of the silent generation, where they set aside emotions in favor of rational decision-making. [2]
  • Baby boomers are self-sufficient: The baby boomer generation was raised on the idea that they needed to work hard to get to their desired place. Baby boomers will continue moving forward with their projects as best as they can. This group is incredibly self-sufficient, which is ideal for many workplaces. [2]
  • Ability to build strong relationships with guests: Baby boomers have shared life experiences and therefore a strong understanding of customers and guests, especially those from the same demographic. It is easy to understand the potential benefit to your business of having boomers as part of the face of your organization and coaching younger colleagues. [3]

[1] https://www.randstadrisesmart.com/blog/5-reasons-baby-boomers-strengthen-your-team

[2] https://www.indeed.com/career-advice/finding-a-job/baby-boomer-characteristics

[3] https://www.go2hr.ca/recruitment/10-reasons-why-recruiting-and-retaining-baby-boomers-will-improve-your-business-and-your-bottom-line