Emad Barsoum writes: The Clash of Generations
A friend came to me one day, from my age group, with a careworn face and with muttered words, why do they not listen? he said. I turned to him wondering, as he is known to be very sarcastic when he shares with his friends any worries or concerns. My friend believes that handling problem with less stress and through a bit of sarcasm helps overcome most of the tension that we might go through while solving our issues.
What is the problem my friend? I inquired,
My son, who is in his early twenties cannot establish with me a peaceful wise conversation, he must argue and tends to correct me, he challenges his father in the discussions as an opponent not his father, and his best friend!
I smiled, with a gentle tap on his shoulder trying to calm him down, my friend it is the difference in generations, I stated.
If these differences in generations would end here, between a father and son then there would be no major stress, however, the clash between generations is taking serious turns when it comes to workplace and professional relationships. Ambition is great, it is the fuel for progress and success, yet it is a mixed blessing. Young generations try to move up in much bigger steps than they could handle, and sometimes either they stumble or step on others’ necks.
Younger generations perceive elders as a hurdle in their path to realize their ambition, they regard them as the old guard that must give them the way and step aside for them, forgetting that the elders are those who have delivered the organization to the current state of success, and now they are paving the future for the young.
The grand surprise in such clash is the significant role played by business owners and entrepreneurs within their organizations to deploy the youngers’ limitless ambition towards getting rid of the elders, but with a different perception, hiding the true intentions of supporting the young.
Business owners or top management believe that the young are much easier to control and direct, they seldomly argue or refrain from following orders, even if orders are not in its right place. Owners find in them cheaper labour, who would accept tasks at less pay than the elders.
Blind owners and entrepreneurs would fall in this trap, while they are saving partial expenses, they are slowing down their progress and growth, and by building a loyal team with no experience, they are demolishing the long-term success of their organizations.
Nevertheless, it is very crucial to acknowledge the role of the younger generations in the progress and development of all organizations and in many aspects of life, once utilized correctly and away from the misguidance and misperception of few business owners and entrepreneurs. The young generation is the leader of the future, same as elders nowadays. Both cannot function without close and direct cooperation.
The progress and development require, the creativity and energy of the young together with the experience and wisdom of the elders, then the clash would turn into total harmony and compatibility.