Leading Generational Intersections: When Energy Meets Experience | #PeopleSkills

Leaders are you leading generational intersections or focusing on gaps?

Every day  I hear leaders talk about the generation gap in the workplace.  I read about it blogs.  My reaction is, it’s an intersection — not a gap. What are you doing at that intersection?

When the leadership in an organization see a gap and focus on differences, they widen the gap.  When the leadership see the possibilities at the intersection of talents, success is limitless.

Leading Generational Intersections: Image is intersecting circles.

Leading Generational Intersections. Image via Istock.com.

Images licensed from Istock.com

Leading Generational Intersections!

Gaps among diverse people are temporary not permanent. Consider how many times gaps have faded into sudden connection and teamwork in everyday life …

  • Disparate groups — even mistrustful factions — who pull together in a major crisis to save lives

  • Prospects who don’t want to talk to a sales person — until the sales rep finds the common ground

  • Private venture capitalists who embrace very young entrepreneurs when high potential and profit is staring them in the face

  • Very young entrepreneurs who truly welcome older experienced investors and advisers to increase success

Everyone Has a Story

My young nephew, when hearing me tell humorous stories that included now deceased relatives he never knew, blurted out “tell more stories!” This was after a long holiday meal where he was the only child at the table. You would think he would have been bored. No! He wanted to connect/intersect with generations he never knew.

What common elements do you find when leading generational intersections?

  1. Positive, fun, upbeat, hopeful moments

  2. Possibilities and abundance for everyone not exclusions and shortages of opportunities

  3. Shared feelings and support and a sense that others “get you”

  4. Mutual gain from respecting diverse talents and views

  5. Higher calling or need as in a crisis

What can leadership do find more of these intersections?

  1. Create positive opportunities for the generations to interact.

  2. Highlight the abundance of success that awaits instead of the tough times and narrowing opportunities.

  3. Team build with employees’ stories. The generations intersect as they see common human needs and responses emerge and merge.

Why bother? Because …

Leaders, help the generations to intersect. The time is now. I have many team building programs to make this happen. Let’s do it!

From my professional experience to your success,
Kate Nasser, The People Skills Coach™

Related Post:
Leadership: 5 Essentials to Build 21st Century Teams

©2013-2019 Kate Nasser, CAS, Inc. Somerville, NJ. I appreciate your sharing the link to this post on your social streams. However, if you want to re-post or republish the content of this post, please email info@katenasser.com for permission and guidelines. Thank you for respecting intellectual capital.

Kate Nasser, The People Skills Coach™, delivers coaching, consulting, training, and keynotes on leading change, employee engagement, teamwork, and delivering the ultimate customer service. She turns interaction obstacles into interpersonal success. See this site for workshop outlines, keynote footage, and customer results.

Get more inspiration and actionable tips for high engagement results!

Buy Kate Nasser’s new book Leading Morale (Amazon.com).

9 Responses to “Leading Generational Intersections: When Energy Meets Experience | #PeopleSkills”

  1. Kimunya Mugo says:

    Exactly! I made a comment that hinged on what you discuss in this post in corporate meeting a short while back and got blank stares and stutters. I believe the reason generation gap exist is because of a misconception of two key issues: control and power. When these two are consolidated in the hands of a few “people with wisdom”, then a generation gap is inevitable. However, when the same group of “people with wisdom” decide to bring the generations to intersect, they share that same control and power. This effectively makes them stronger rather than weaken their position. When people feel and see their value on contribution, the probability that they end up as valuable ambassadors/supporters increases exponentially.

    • Kate Nasser says:

      Hi Kimunya,
      To be sure. And on the issue of who has power and control — when people see an abundance of possibilities — they each feel they have some power and control. It’s not just the “people with wisdom” who see and struggle in a generation gap. Younger generations often play into the gap model by disregarding the others’ ways. You then have everyone claiming their perspective is right either based on wisdom and experience or based on cutting edge knowledge.

      Meanwhile there is no real gap. It is a perception. At every intersection you can see the intersection or you can see the gap!

      Thanks for your contribution on this piece.

      Best regards,

      • Kimunya Mugo says:

        Very true Kate, then it becomes a circus of the dog chasing its tail. Opportunities are lost in the long run, and we end up with a bunch of tired, irritated and disgruntled human beings stuck in a rut.

  2. Jon Mertz says:


    A post right up my alley! As you can imagine, I agree completely. We need to stop focusing on the supposed “differences” and instead focus on how to engage our different talents and perspectives to lead in a better way. It is a two-way learning street. I have learned a lot from Millennials in our workplace. I am a better leader because of them. I only hope that I have helped them in some way, too.

    It starts with a conversation, sharing lessons learned and experiences. A great call to action! It is time to cross the gap.



    • Kate Nasser says:

      Hi Jon,
      I am sure — very sure — that Millennials have learned from you too! When we escape the crush of either/or and whose better than whom thinking, we see an intersection of talents. It’s natural. It may well be the universal default underneath everyone’s struggle for self-survival.

      FYI: When I was writing this post Jon, I actually thought of you because of your blog and the focus you put on generations and crossing the gap. I am so pleased you weighed in on this post!

      Have a wonderful week.

      Warmest thanks and regards,

  3. Raghunandan says:

    Hi Kate,

    Liked the title of the blog, one thing we missed out is knowledge sharing and bringing the generation X to speed with Gen Y to ensure that there is gona be a intersection of generation minds. As you said Gen X has to tell stories to Gen Y to make them understand about the issues and Gen Y to find out easy means of convincing Gen X that completes the circle in making energy meet the experience.

    best regards,


    • Kate Nasser says:

      Hi Raghu,
      The intersection exists and — as you say — each generation has to see it, work to make it stronger, and complete the circle of energy and experience!

      I am so glad this post is hitting the mark with so many. Many thanks for your feedback!


  4. Dave Moore says:

    Hey Kate
    As I said on G+ this is an excellent post
    One of the things I hate in business and in life is labelling people or generations. I think making these gaps intersections is a great idea.
    We see such a dichotomy of thought in business and in training. People talk about age GAP, generation GAP and then go on and on about building bridges. Duh!
    Building a bridge across the gap or the divide comes from doing exactly what you say in this post.
    One thing I would add to your post, if I may, just one suggestion for your list of ‘What common elements turn the generation gap into an intersection?’ and that would be: Act as if there ISN’T a gap. As soon as we engage with something it grows legs or sprouts wings. Inclusion is not an illusion. If we defy the existence of the age or generation Gap then we promote a blanket inclusion that anyone of any age is valid, valued and has something to say.
    Great post, as I said. It highlights something very relevant in society today. thanks

    • Kate Nasser says:

      Hi Dave,
      Love your “inclusion is not an illusion” message. I would echo your sentiment with gaps are an illusion. Differences between people are not gaps — unless we see them as gaps.

      Thanks for expanding this discussion and for sharing the post on your G+ stream.

      With gratitude,

KateNasser on Facebook KateNasser Blog KateNasser on Twitter KateNasser on LinkedIn KateNasser on Pinterest