The hallmark of great leaders has to do with the way they are able, to harness, to the fullest, all the resources, within their reach and one has to do, with how they handle workers that, are older than them.
After I graduated from the university at the age of 24, I received an offer, to work, as the lead manager for a construction firm, which requires that, I manage 15 staff members.
I remember the first meeting I had with the staff. At first, most of them were polite, but then, some of the older ones started whispering among themselves.
Admittedly, it was tough getting them, to look past my age and judge me, based on my output, but in time, they came to respect me and gave me all the support needed and I made sure that, even though they were working under me, I treated them with the utmost respect.
There is this believe that millennials, are restless and do not have the necessary skill set, to lead teams having individuals older than them.
It is up to you, to prove them wrong, by being very professional, when executing your job.
Here are 5 ways through, which you can manage people that are older than you:
Sometimes, the older staff tends to know certain things and it will do you good, to be humble, when addressing them.
There is a thin line between, over-ambition and arrogance. Try not to cross the line, as the effect may be very costly.
Try as much as possible, to listen to the older staff talk. Talk less and listen more and do not assume that, you know everything.
Give the staff confidence and let them have open access to you and they will express themselves better.
Understand The Values Of Your Staff
There is a high probability that the older staff may not feel confident, with your leadership and that is why it is essential that, you take your time, to study them and understand the values that, each one of them brings.
Understanding the values of the staff gives you a better understanding of, how to utilize them, to achieve a maximum, positive effect.
Some of the older staff, know the business, inside out, so, it will serve you well, to incorporate what they know, with what you know, to achieve great progress.
It very easy, to get carried away, with different activities, buzzing around, but, when you stay focused on the task at hand and push your staff, towards achieving results, the older folks, will develop a natural liking for you and it will become, very easy to lead them.
Once the results are evident and easy to see, you have earned your place.
Let Your Confidence Ooze Out: You just need to get it right here, as the older folks will exploit you if your confidence level is low.
You need to step up your game, in terms of confidence level, but do not cross the line; hence, your confidence becomes arrogance.
When it comes to, how to display your confidence, without seeming arrogance, your decision making capability, must ooze confidence, but at the same time, give room for others, to input their knowledge.
While it is okay, to pamper your staff a little, do not allow them to take the freedom you have given them, for granted. Take charge and let them know that, you are their boss.
Do not be complacent and let bad habits and unwelcome acts slide under the table.
Hold them accountable for their actions. When you make mistakes, own up to it and fix it and while doing it, do not pass blame because, if you do, your staff will pick up the habit and start passing blames and once this happens, the older folks will look down on you and see you as an amateur.
What other ways do you think can manage people older than you in your workplace, let us know in the comment section below.
Featured Image: topfreebooks.org
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