While builders and traditionalists typically worked at the same company from the start of their career until the day they retired, their children found out this is no longer possible. Although they embarked on a career with a strong pension plan they learned in the 1990s and later that careers were outliving employers. Well established companies like Montgomery Ward, Trans World Airlines (TWA) and McDonald Douglas went out of business before pensions were fully vested. Even among the survivors there was downsizing to end the careers that had been started as a lifelong commitment.
Pension plans became 401K plans and career transitions became a way of life for the first time in American history. Today, only a few traditionally managed companies even offer a pension plan.
Most baby boomers are now getting ready for retirement. They no longer seek additional responsibility, preferring to turn over the business world to the next generation. The thought of maintaining a high-stress position is unappealing to many in this generation so the attitude of not working for someone younger than them has gone away from many in this generation.
Money can be a motivator if retirement funds have not been accumulated but typically they understand that with less responsibility comes less in the paycheck.
The work ethic of this generation is unchanged so employers enjoy the benefit of some that will be on the job at the appointed time and will give a full day’s work. And although the baby boomers are largely shunning stressful jobs, they are very happy to share the benefit of their experiences in strengthening an organization.
©2014 Max Impact, used with permission.
Learn more about today’s generations:
- Builders / Traditionalists, also known as the greatest generation, born before 1944
- Baby boomers, sometimes relabeled the sandwich generation, born between 1943 and 1964
- Generation X, born between 1961 and 1980
- Generation Y, sometimes referred to as the millennial generation, born between 1977 and 2000
- Millennials, sometimes referred to as generation Z, born after 1998
- “Generations at Work: Managing the Clash of Boomers, Gen Xers, and Gen Yers in the Workplace”
- “Because I Said So! ”: The Truth Behind the Myths, Tales, and Warnings Every Generation Passes Down to Its Kids.
- “When Generations Collide”: Who They Are. Why They Clash. How to Solve the Generational Puzzle at Work.
- More books about generations.
- For viewing: Thousands of vintage old television program and classic movies at Amazon Prime. Get a free trail