How to Work for a Gen X-er

Gen X-ers are currently aged 28-43 and have been in the workforce for anywhere from 10 to 25 years. Many of them have risen to positions of power and authority; they’ve done so by being dedicated to the task-at-hand and achieving measurable results. Here’s what you need to keep in mind when you’re working for a Gen X-er.

Take Compliments Seriously.

Gen X-ers are inherently scrupulous and cautious by nature. When a Gen X-er gives you a compliment, they really mean it. Gen X-ers were raised in an environment in which compliments weren’t handed out freely, therefore, they really have an impact when they are used. This also means that you should be careful about handing out compliments or criticisms to your Gen X boss. Remember that everything you say or do has significant meaning for your Gen X manager, so be mindful of that as you choose your words.

Ask Expectations.

Gen X-ers will have a clear expectation of what you need to accomplish. If that’s not communicated clearly to you, there could be some ensuing trouble. Gen X-ers are known for being incredibly self-reliant and not necessarily great at collaboration or communication. In order to avoid workplace tension, ask your Gen X manager what his or her expectations are from you. This could be in general at work, for a specific task, or in a particular instance. However, you must know that in order to be on the same page, you will need to ask them to clarify.

Expect Analysis.

Gen X-ers are skeptical, analytical, and dedicated to getting the current task-at-hand completed before moving on to the next one. Because of this, Gen X-ers tend to analyze a lot before they make a move and usually only take calculated risks. If you’re working for a Gen X-er, you should expect to have your work analyzed intensely by your manager. This isn’t necessarily a reflection on you or your work quality; rather, it’s a way for them to check and make sure the job can be completed to satisfaction the way they want. If you aren’t someone who does well with analysis, make sure to check in with them proactively instead of having them come to you with an unresolved question.

If you have the opportunity to work for a Gen X-er, you should take it. You will learn a lot about prioritizing, being independent, and decision-making. If you contact Award Staffing, we can help you figure out the assets and skillsets you should discuss when interviewing with your potential Gen X boss.

How to Manage the Baby Boomer

Baby Boomers are coming to the points in their careers where some are starting to step down or retire in favor of having a Gen X-er or a Millennial replace them. If you are in charge of a Baby Boomer, keep in mind that they have likely been in the workforce a lot longer than you have and expect a certain degree of respect. Here’s what you need to keep in mind when you’re managing a Baby Boomer.

Give Structure.

Baby Boomers are used to structure, and they prefer it as a way of accomplishing things. When you’re asking your Baby Boomer to finish or complete certain tasks, make sure you communicate the preferred milestones you want for the project. This will help them manage their time effectively and figure out how much extra time would need to be dedicated to each project. They will also appreciate the structure because it will reinforce their need to be at work during that particular time as opposed to leaving early or going on vacation.

Make Yourself Available.

Baby Boomers prioritize face-to-face relationships over any other type of interaction, including: phone, e-mail, text, conference call, etc. If you are managing a Baby Boomer, you will need to make yourself available on an in-person basis for them to really feel connected and like they’re able to make an impact. When you make yourself available in-person, you’re reinforcing for them that they’re an integral part of the workforce without whom you wouldn’t be able to survive. They will be able to ask you questions and tout their accomplishments, and they would much rather do this in person than by any other means of communication.

Remind Them to Relax.

Baby Boomers are used to working themselves to the core. If you’re managing a Baby Boomer, remind them to relax and stress the importance of work-life balance. This isn’t something they will like or necessarily want to do, but try to suggest it as a reward for their hard work. Though most will be reluctant to accept the acknowledgement, this is something you need to be aware of as a Baby Boomer manager. You ultimately want your employees to be happy and healthy; this is one small way you can aid this effort.


If they could have it their way, Baby Boomers would work as much as humanly possible. As a Baby Boomer manager, you are responsible for helping them balance their strong work-ethic and your company’s needs. If you are in need of finding quality associates to hire, contact Award Staffing. We will be able to match you up with hardworking associates who meet your company’s needs.

How to Work for a Baby Boomer

If you’re currently in the workforce, there’s a good chance that you’re working for a Baby Boomer. Currently, Baby Boomers are ages 44 – 62 and make up 45% of the workforce. Most Baby Boomers have put in time at their jobs and have successfully risen in the ranks. Here’s what you need to keep in mind when you’re working for a Baby Boomer.

Respect Their Authority.

Baby Boomers come from the frame of mind that experience is the most important factor in determining authority. When you work for a Baby Boomer, it’s safe to assume that you have less experience than them. In order to work for a Baby Boomer, they need to feel like their experience is worth something to you. This means that whenever possible, you should defer to their judgement if a big decision or challenge is at stake. This will not only establish a positive rapport between you and your Baby Boomer boss, but it will also help you learn and develop problem-solving skills in your career.

Show Your Work Ethic.

Work ethic goes a long way for a Baby Boomer. Because Baby Boomers are so used to working long hours on hard projects, they also want to see you putting in that much effort. While you shouldn’t have to stay until sunset every night, it wouldn’t hurt to let them know that you’ve been putting in extra time or personal time on a project that’s particularly important to you. Or, you can prove your work ethic to them by offering extra help on a project that’s vital to the company’s success.

Develop a Personal Relationship.

Baby Boomers prioritize personal, face-to-face relationships over any other type of relationship. If you want to be on your Baby Boomer boss’s good side, make it a point to regularly schedule meetings with him or her. This will let your boss know that you’re not only serious about your job and duties, but you’re also serious about your personal relationship with him/her. When you do this, you should see an improvement in communication, which will also help you with your career endeavors down the road.

If you are interested in finding your next career, contact Award Staffing. No matter what generation you’re in, we will be able to match you up with a company that can work with your unique skill sets and offerings.


Understanding Baby Boomers, Gen X-ers, and Millennials in the Workforce

We’re at a fascinating time in the workforce right now. Baby Boomers, Gen X-ers, and Millennials are all working together in harmony but in different capacities. Here’s what you need to understand about the differences between Baby Boomers, Gen X-ers, and Millennials in the workforce.

Baby Boomers.

Baby boomers are the quintessential definition of “workaholics.” They are used to working extremely long hours to achieve the results they want, and believe that work ethic directly translates to work quality. Baby Boomers believe that positions of authority and power should be granted to those who have acquired a fair amount of experience and who have worked hard enough for it. Many Baby Boomers have sacrificed other pursuits (such as families, vacation, and hobbies) in favor of working the traditional way up the ladder. They expect to be given respect for all the time they have put into their careers.

Gen X-ers.

Gen X-ers are typically viewed as being cautious and intelligent when it comes to working. They don’t work as many hours as Baby Boomers, and they work “smarter” than Millennials do. They would much rather prefer to have a task assigned to them and complete it in entirety before moving on to the next task. Gen X-ers are inherently independent and excel in situations in which they are given the chance to work alone or assign their own values. In terms of their role, Gen X-ers tend to be the people in the company who can take a certain task and finish it without wasting or diverting any time.


Millennials are firmly in the camp of working to live, and not the other way around. Many millennials view their jobs as a means to an end and prefer to leave the office as soon as the clock strikes five o’clock. Unlike Gen X-ers, Millennials prefer to collaborate with one another and multi-task on many different projects at once. Millennials also differ from Baby Boomers in that they aren’t workaholics and view their worth as being defined by contribution as opposed to merit or experience. Overall, millennials make good employees if they feel like their voice is being heard and if it’s understood that work is not their primary passion in life.

If you are trying to decide whether you should hire a Baby Boomer, Gen X-er, or Millennial, contact Award Staffing. We will be able to sit down with you and assess the correct situation for your business depending on your unique needs. All of the generations provide very different experiences and have different outlooks, so it is important to take that into account when making your hiring decisions.