For many years, everything was quite clear about generational management: we have a Generation X that works diligently and loyally for us, and a Generation Y that seeks meaning and self-realization. The consequences are now clear: companies are increasingly becoming luxury hotels with relaxation rooms, open spaces and, in some cases, fully equipped gyms. But now comes another generation that is pushing itself into the labor market: Generation Z.   The result is hybrid teams from three generations that challenge leaders with tough challenges. After a short presentation, I would like to give differentiated recommendations for the leadership of the three generations.

Generation X

If you look at the Portal Absolventa, you will find the following definition: For the so-called Generation X, career advancement is the most important goal in the search for a job. At least that’s the study results of the HR consultancy Robert Half. According to the survey, this generation of 30 to 50-year-olds is also characterized as ambitious, individualistic and ambitious. The members of Generation X are well trained and work to be able to afford a materially secure life. Unlike its predecessor generation, Generation X does not present work to other needs, but rather sees it as a means to an end.

Generation Y

The website Gründerküchesays: The representatives of Generation Y are considered to be comparatively well-educated, often with a university degree or university degree. They grew up with the Internet and mobile communication, leading a tech-savvy life. Generation Y also differs from previous generations in terms of attitudes towards work:

  • Generation Y especially likes to work in virtual teams.
  • Deep hierarchies, hierarchies by titles anyway, are suspicious to her.
  • Millennials are optimistic, confident, and have little confidence in government.
  • Fun and, above all, a deeper sense at work are especially important to millennials.
  • They also want to work independently on projects and realize themselves.
  • The term work-life balance has almost been invented for Generation Y: hardly a generation places more emphasis on this eternal balancing act. But this is not so much about leisure time as it is about self-determination: when he works where, the Gen Y representative wants to define himself.

Generation Z

Generation Z is currently only entering the labour market, so few well-founded facts about it are yet known. I therefore make a further use of the definition in the Portal Absolventa use: Today’s young people who enter the labour market in the next few years belong to the so-called Generation Z. They are the generation that is completely Digital technologies: The Internet and smartphones are part of their lives – both at work and in their private lives. Unlike Generation Y, Generation Z again differentiates more between work and private life. Fixed demarcations as well as clear structures are clearly wanted again. Taking your work laptop home after work is not in there. Self-realization is no longer only sought in work, but above all in leisure time and social contacts.

Generation management in hybrid teams

If you look at Klaffke’s book,   you read: “Happy cows give more milk.” This supposed and much-quoted peasant wisdom is gaining more and more followers in economic life in the figurative sense. From a common sense perspective, there is a great deal to suggest that people who feel comfortable in their workplace actually do more and go the famous “extra mile” more often. This should ultimately have a positive impact on the success of a company – also in the monetary sense.

It’s about running each of the three generations properly and aligning the company optimally with them. But how can this be done and with what instrument can this be done? Not every one of the three generations likes working in the home office and agility cannot solve all problems as an egg-laying woolly milk sow. And now there are hardly any teams that consist exclusively of one generation.   Generation management is therefore increasingly becoming an important management tool.

Generation Management X

On the website Generation Z you can find the following tips: The professionals of Generation X rate work as a central content of life, but show a special interest in a balanced relationship between work and private life, always acting for their own benefit. Privately, Generation X tends to strive for individual orientation and alternative life plans.

What is important here, then, is clearly regulated working hours, a good salary and career, and long-term guarantees. This generation is also said to have high respect for hierarchy. It is therefore a question of seeing work as a necessity for private   realisation.

Generation Management Y

Here, the magazine Haufe shows some exciting points:   The young generation wants to be taken seriously and this from the very beginning. She wants attention, recognition and challenging tasks that make fun and at the same time make sense (depending on the individual attitude, there are differences in weighting). Getting all the information is important, as is having free choices. Modern work equipment is a matter of course for Generation Y and supports working in a team and in networks. Appropriate remuneration and individual development opportunities are of central importance.

Ergo points a lot to home office, flexible working hours, team events, agile teams with many role and project changes. An agile guided tour is certainly recommended here. Above all, it is important to find an individual solution for each employee. Fixed processes and assembly line annual talks are therefore not an effective   method here.

Generation Management Z

As mentioned above, not much sound data about this generation is yet known. However, it is currently becoming apparent that a different approach is needed in the first place. The agency Jungesherzmakes it clear: More and more personnel   and recruiters are dealing with the possibilities for addressing Gen Z. Clever HR colleagues try out many exciting ways. Whether it’s applying via WhatsApp, influencer marketing, selecting a suitable executive via time-delayed video interviews, digital events at high school or personnel campaigns via Snapchat.

There are numerous studies showing that the requirements regarding gene Z are largely the same as those for Generation Y. Personally, however, I cannot quite believe this – even some of the existing studies point to significant differences.

This is how the magazine the world:   Keywords in job offers such as work-life blending, i.e. the mixing of work and leisure, have a negative effect on young people. “Clear service closure” is now an effective lure for this again. Continuing mentions the world as a grunt:   this has nothing to do with laziness, but with the fact that work in the digital age is possible anywhere and at any time.” If you don’t be too watchful, life is just work.

After a little google, I have an exciting Study from Bremen   Found. The results I have recorded in a brief and concise note below:

  • The working environment is the most important criterion overall.
  • Clear tasks, clear boundaries and a strict separation of work and private life are important.
  • A well-equipped workplace is desirable – no desk sharing and no open spaces.
  • A clear structure and regulated work packages are important.
  • Older generations must also get used to the fact that their statements are immediately checked for accuracy by Gen Z via smartphone.
  • Hierarchical authority counts little for Gen Z. However, it is prepared to pay respect to experience, arguments and authentic behaviour.

Conclusion: Each generation is different

generation management hybrid teams
Three-generation management tools (own presentation)

X,Y,Z – 3 generations have recently joined our labour market. Each of the generations demands individual values and working environments. While Generation X comes with regulated working hours and a focus on private life, Generation Y focuses on the search for meaning and self-realization. The result is new working models and agile methods that conquer German offices. But now Generation Z is coming and wants to turn it all around again? Time will tell! It remains exciting how Generation Z will be initiated into the existing models and how this generation will shape the world of work. But now I am also interested in who my readership is: which generation do you belong to?

Welcher Generation gehören Sie an?
Genderhinweis: Ich habe zur leichteren Lesbarkeit die männliche Form verwendet. Sofern keine explizite Unterscheidung getroffen wird, sind daher stets sowohl Frauen, Diverse als auch Männer sowie Menschen jeder Herkunft und Nation gemeint. Lesen Sie mehr dazu.

Falls es noch Fragen gibt, können Sie mich gerne anrufen. Hierzu einfach im Buchungssystem nach einen freien Termin schauen. Ich nehme mir jeden Monat einige Stunden Zeit um mit Lesern zu interagieren.

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I blog about the impact of digitalization on our working environment. For this purpose, I present content from science in a practical way and show helpful tips from my everyday work. I am a manager in an SME myself and I wrote my doctoral thesis at the University of Erlangen-Nuremberg at the chair of IT Management.

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