Generation X – Bridging the Gap in Leadership

There is no clear decision when “Generation X” begins or ends, it is typically said that is starts in the early 1960s and ends in the early 1980s. Generation X follows the baby boomer generation and are often referred to as “Gen Xers”. “Gen Xers have been called everything from slackers to disloyal, from dumb to just plain bad” (O’Bannon, 2001). It seems that this could not be any farther from the truth.

Gen Xers come from a time when the divorce rate in America was skyrocketing. “Between 1965 and 1977, the divorce rate in America doubled. Over 40% of Xers come from broken families, and 12% of elementary school children grew up as “latchkey kids,” responsible for their own welfare after school until their parents returned from work” (Zill & Robinson, 1995). Although no one realized it at the time, this taught the Gen Xers how to be self-sufficient. It also taught them how to handle difficult situations.

Gen Xers are looked at as being responsible for bridging the gap between the baby boomers and millennials. Carolyn Wiethoff states, “Gen Xers grew up in the information age, and they are quite comfortable with technology. Politically, they grew up as America’s global power was declining. In the business world, Generation X saw a record number of corporate bankruptcies, Wall Street scandals, and massive corporate downsizing.” They have shown they are capable of being tech savvy, such as millennials, and exhibit leadership skills shown by the baby boomers.

Gen Xers were forced to be responsible and handle adversity at a young age. This valuable skill translated to the workplace and created great leaders. In a study published by DDI, it looked at more than 25,000 leaders spanning 54 countries and 26 major industries. They found Generation X accounts for 51 percent of leadership roles globally (Neal & Wellins, 2018). Their ability to be responsible and handle adversity has showcased their leadership skills.

Gen Xers are viewed as loyal employees, but also value time spent with their families. This can be directly related to how Gen Xers were raised. They take pride in spending time with their families because it was something that was taken from them at a young age. They understand the value of family and what it can mean to their spouses and children.

Their life experiences have impacted the way they communicate, act, and react to the world around them. Their experiences have given them the tools to communicate to both younger and older generations. They have risen to leadership levels without sacrificing the value the of family. This can be directly related to their upbringing. They were shown family and financial instability. In turn, they have made it a priority not to repeat history.

Sources:

Neal, S., & Wellins, R. “Generation X-not millennials-is changing the nature of work.” 11 April 2018, https://www.cnbc.com/2018/04/11/generation-x–not-millennials–is-changing-the-nature-of-work.html

O’Bannon, G. (2001). Managing our future: The Generation X factor. Public personnel Management, 30, 95-106.

Wiethoff, Carolyn. (2004). Management Basics: Managing Generation X . Indiana libraries, 23(2), 53-55. https://scholarworks.iupui.edu/bitstream/handle/1805/1343/Management%20Basics.pdf?sequence=1&isAllowed=y

Zill, N., & Robinson, J. (1995). The Generation X difference. American Demographics, 17, 29-32.

By: Tyler Houchin, General Studies Major – IUPUC

Words change human behaviors

We all know of someone that speaks before they think. While not knowing how it affects those around us. Words can change human behavior in both positive and negative ways. One single word can make the difference between liking a person and disliking a person.  It can affect relationships, businesses and impact your career. Using the right or wrong words will show you how a person is going to react.

For instance, when communicating with your significant other use words of encouragement such as love, proud and beautiful.  This will allow the person receiving the message to feel happy, appreciated and able to open up and communicate better with you. On the other hand just using the wrong words such as always or never, you’re pathetic, you have to do this will change the behavior of the person. They will shut down, become standoffish and not feel comfortable to communicate you with.

Same thing in businesses they know the right words to say to keeping customers coming back instead of losing them. Greeting their customers asking how their day is going will make them feel welcomed and willing to shop at their store. Ignoring the customers using words like hurry, I don’t have time for this will make the customer want to leave and tell their friends about how badly they were treated.

Just one negative word can ruin a person’s day. Nevertheless, one positive word can make a person’s day. Benjamin Franklin said, “Remember not only to say the right thing in the right place, but far more difficult still, to leave unsaid the wrong thing at the tempting moment.” So in other words choose your words wisely because they have the potential of accomplishing nearly anything or destroying nearly anything.

By Tameeka Sizemore, Psychology major- IUPUC

 

Why must we listen?

When you were young do you recall your parents telling you to LISTEN?  Perhaps you remember them saying ‘I know you hear me but are you LISTENING to me?’ At the time did you wonder ‘What is the difference?’ Let me try to explain what the difference is and why it is an important life skill.

Hearing is a physical activity that refers to the vibrations your ear receives then turns into sounds. On the other hand, listening is much more involved and can be a physical AND mental activity.

There are also different types of listening. For example, active listening involves not only the physical activity of listening to what is being said but also in watching the body language of the speaker. Effective listening requires focus, and concentration which requires both physical and mental activity. Both types are extremely important in our daily communications.

By being both an active and effective listener you can help in preventing miscommunication, misunderstandings, establish a connection with the speaker, and also improve the interpretation of what is being said.  I am sure we have all experienced a variation of miscommunication or misunderstanding. What if you had a simple misunderstanding while working on project and someone was hurt? Could a  miscommunication from a co-worker lead to clients losing their investment? Would you lose your job? Unfortunately, all of these things can and have happened.

Here are some ways you can improve your listening skills.

Maintain eye contact. By keeping eye contact with the speaker your mind will wander less and the distraction of those around you can be kept to a minimum.

Remain attentive. Once eye contact is established you can remain attentive and you are likely to absorb and retain more information.

Keep an open mind. Save your questions and judgements for the end of the speech simply because they may be answered at the speech progresses.

Listen to the words the speaker is saying and when you hear them in context and it will help in interpretation and limit misunderstandings.

Don’t interrupt. Of course this goes without saying however we often need reminded.

Employers are providing workshops and seminars to their employees simply because of they want to emphasize the importance of listening. Listening is a skill that is not only required but essential for the workplace, relationships, and everyday communication.  How well do you think you listen?

 

 

By Lindsay McIntosh,  Senior at IUPUC

 

 

“I’m a businessman.”

“I’m a businessman. I’ve made my money supplying a popular demand. If I break the law, mAl_Caponey customers are as guilty as I am.”  

      Alphonse “Al” Capone was a notorious American mobster based in Chicago. He became increasingly popular among the people of Cook County during the Prohibition era. Capone was the main man for bootlegging, the illegal selling and distributing of alcohol.

      Capone viewed people as either potential customers or potential threats. He used his popularity with the press to help people see him as someone who was on their side during the Prohibition. He used this to his advantage to get what he wanted. Since Capone is majority Italian, the way he ran his mob was different than most. His men were very loyal, and if not they would be dead.  Once, he had invited members from his mob whom he had found out had been aiding his rival gangs to dinner, and afterwards he had proceeded to tell them that he knew and he tortured them all night before killing them. Capone had a tendency to run things the old way while making a modern twist. He would host a soup kitchen for the press to see and at the same time he would be paying off police.

      Uncle Al is still one of the most famous mobsters in America. He was only sent to prison on tax-evasion in 1931, four years after the Supreme Court deemed illegal income was taxable in 1927. He later died of a heart attack at his home in Miami on January 25, 1947.

 

     By E. Green, Business Major – IUPUC

 

Have You Heard That Men and Women Communicate Differently?

For years you have grown up listening to people tell you that men are physical/sexual beings while women are a roller coaster of emotions. Although, no two people are alike, I found that this statement is in fact true for the most part.

 

Men communicate with the intent of independently making a decision. Women communicate to process all the information that they have just received and talk it over again. In conversation, Women tend to have more in depth conversations. They add memories and emotions when communicating. While Men, have much more simpler conversations leaving out the fine details and only adding in extra information when asked to do so.

 

If you have noticed in a workplace that Women do not hesitate to approach Men with information or questions that they have directly face to face. While Men will approach Women from the side angle because face to face conversation is sometimes declared as to personal for Men while working. Have you noticed that Women tend to nod their heads as a sign of affirmation that they understood what you were saying or explaining? All women are secretly shaking their heads right about now. Well, Men tend to nod their heads as a sign of agreeing with you or the argument at hand. Women, next time you are listening to a male co-worker speak make sure that you are aware if you nod. Sometimes they will misinterpret this as you agreeing with them and not just you acknowledging what they said.

 

Communication also has an unspoken language. Body Language. Women, we have been doing this since we were born. It is almost like body language is hidden away in our DNA and it literally shows in our faces every day. We have faces for everything; sad, happy, disgust, confused, and lost. While Men on the other hand have one face with a hint of smile every once in a while. Too often we give ourselves away in our facial features. They should have a class in High School on how to contain your facial expressions when you are in the middle of a conference for work. Many times the way a Women shows her body language gives away how she is feeling or what she is thinking at the moment when she doesn’t necessarily want it to be known yet.

 

So, with all of the information I have given today I have a few pointers to remember in everyday life whether it be at home, work, or school.

 

Take these facts with a grain of salt. Like I said before, no two people are alike. Men and Women will always communicate differently.

Stay Aware. Make sure you know how to communicate correctly between people. The way to talk to one person may not be the same method you use to talk to another person.

Finally, Get Information. When you interact with people on a daily basis it is ok to ask them questions. If you know a little more about them you can communicate with them more easily.

 

By Brittany Sample, Business Major – IUPUC

 

 

The Spoken Word

According to the Poetry Foundation, a spoken word performance is “a broad designation for poetry intended for performance,” (Spoken Word, n.d.). One of my favorite spoken word artists is Shane Koyczan. His piece ‘To This Day’ is one of his most popular. He speaks about bullying, depression, suicide, and many similar topics by using figurative language. His descriptions and comparisons are used to help his audience understand his point or topic. His performances and the many others similar to his help the speaker release any sort of emotion and on some occasions make a difference.

-Abigail Sabelhaus, Undecided Major/ IUPUC

Resource:

Spoken word. (n.d.). Retrieved January 25, 2018, from https://www.poetryfoundation.org/learn/glossary-terms/spoken-word

More Like “Oh Brother”…

Have you ever had someone do something wrong, and then when you confront them for it, they get upset? Well, that is exactly what happens in an episode of Big Brother.

Big Brother is a television show where a group of people get put into a house together for a whole summer and they try to win $500,000. The houseguests are not allowed to leave the house or communicate with anyone outside of the house. Each week, the houseguests vote to evict someone out of the house. There is a jury at the end that gets to decide who wins the half a million-dollar prize.

For this blog post, I will be talking about a disagreement from season 19, which is the most recent season. This dispute was between Josh and Mark. They were in the backyard playing pool. There was a bet between the two, that whoever lost had to drink a cup of pickle juice and hot sauce. As the game was getting closer to the end, Josh would make noises whenever Mark was trying to hit the pool balls. Whenever it was Josh’s final turn, he was trying to hit in the eight-ball and scratched the ball, this means that he hit the ball twice. Because Josh hit the ball twice, he should have lost the game and should have had to drink the pickle juice and hot sauce. Josh got all worked up whenever all the other houseguests said that he scratched the eight-ball. So whenever Mark was supposed to drink the pickle juice and hot sauce, he threw it in Josh’s face. Josh got super upset that he did that and Mark said it was because he technically won, and not Josh. Josh then goes inside and gets some ketchup and mayonnaise to throw in Mark’s face. This causes a huge argument to break out between the two of them.

While all of that happens, production does not step in to do anything. There is a fight later on in the season that production does have to come onto the speakers and have them separate.

The communications problems that occurred with this disagreement was that the two guys were both yelling. Neither one of them were trying to sit down and have a conversation about it like adults would.

If there were two people, that worked in the same department as each other, that were yelling and screaming at each other, I would have them separate and take a moment to themselves. I would then have the two workers go meet with the human resource manager. The human resource manager would then need to find a different department for one of them to work in, so that the two weren’t working together anymore. If the two can’t get along, then work won’t be done as fast because they would be arguing the majority of the time.

 

Author: J.C. Ruble

Closing the Age Gap

If I had a dollar every time my grandparents asked me how to use Facebook, fix their phone, or even how to send a text with a picture attached, I’d be rich. In today’s society of ever-evolving technology, the baby boomers seem to have a much steeper learning curve than the millennials.

The communication style between these two generations is drastically different for many reasons. One of which being that the technology that is available today is very different than the technology that was available in the 1970s/1980s. Many millennials have grown up communicating through texts and snapchats instead of through outdated letters and phone calls. Baby boomers would not be able to figure out snapchat and can barely figure out how to text. Most of them would much rather call if they need to talk or reach someone. Although these two styles of communication are much different, the same idea is behind each form of communication and the same goal is achieved, just in a different way.

Another big difference between baby boomers and millennials is cell phone usage. Today, it is becoming more and more acceptable to carry a conversation through text, while also carrying a conversation in person. If you have ever tried to even send just one text while talking to a baby boomer, you most likely received a dirty look, or a snarky remark about your phone. To them, the act of even just checking your phone while carrying a casual conversation can come across as extremely disrespectful.

Even though at times the communication styles between these two age groups seems to be drastically different, the one thing we all have in common is all generations have a need for human interaction. No matter the form.

 

Emma Sanders

Psychology Major at IUPUC

Google’s Image

Google’s Brand Image

 

Google’s brand image, they used in creating Google, was to figure out a way to display information that is easily accessible. Google put this brand image of simplicity and effectiveness into action when they built the Google search engine. The Google search engine finds important individual pages on the World Wide Web, and then links these important individual pages to the users.

Google represents its brand image through new design, as well as innovation of new methods of user interface. Google loves to use color to attract its user. From the bright blue carpet in the middle of its first headquarters, to the traditional red, yellow, and green logo, color and design are important to Google.

Communication through technology is Google’s way of penetrating the marketplace, and this has worked out very well for it. Google now employs more than 60,000 employees worldwide and is known for other products besides the Google search engine, such as Youtube and Android.

A business lesson that we can learn from Google, is that we should remain innovative and keep finding new ways to appeal to consumers through accessibility and effectiveness.

Sources:

https://www.google.com/intl/en/about/our-story/

https://design.google/library/evolving-google-identity/

By: Hugh Hamill, Business Administration Major- IUPUC

Why Barack Obama is Who He Is

Everyone has a past and everyone has childhood upbringings. Some were enjoyable and some were terrible. Does our upbringing impact our frame of reference as well as our communication style? In my opinion, yes, it does. Barack Obama, the 44th president of the United State of America, is no different. Let me give you some background on his upbringing. Obama did not have an ideal upbringing. He was raised mostly by his grandparents. His father walked out on him and his mother at the age of two to attend Harvard University. His father was a very intellectual person; however, he did not come back to visit Obama until he was ten years old. Obama grew up in poverty for much of his young life. He moved to Indonesia at a young age and saw much poverty there and a couple of years later moved back to his birth place of Hawaii. Raised by his grandparents most of his life, Obama attended a private school by scholarships where his grandparents encouraged him in his studies. In the private school, there were only a few African-Americans students enrolled. In private schools, this was still a time where it was uncommon for African Americas and whites to go to school together, so there was a lot of bullying. After high school graduation Obama attended college in LA, transferred to Columbia, and ended up going to Harvard Law School.

 All this impacted Obama because as he started working in Illinois, he was focused on helping people get a better education, helping low-income families, and working towards equal rights. His passions were coming from what he had seen as a child and how he was raised in his home. He wanted to help the less fortunate as well as others. He valued education and healthcare. I believe he was deeply influenced by his upbringing. As his knowledge grew, he realized he enjoyed public speaking. As he communicated, he could be one with his audience and be able to help them understand what he was speaking about. He used his stories so people could draw a picture and be able to understand his message. Once people understood his message he moved to what he wanted to change using uses encouraging energy and passion so that his audience would feel the same way. In 2004 the world really got to know who Barack Obama was in his Keynote speech, a very well-spoken speech, that changed his life by making him be an upcoming star for the Democratic party. He used his upbringing to relate to others and to make others relate to him.

In conclusion, how and where you grow up makes a difference in your life. It impacts your frame of reference. Your communication style is also influenced by this because of your experiences. Think about how you communicate with others and how that relates to how you grew up?

 Sources:

 Kennedy, Edward. The American Journey of Barack Obama. New York: Little Brown and Company, 2008.print.

 Remnick, David. The Bridge. New York: Alfred Publishing Company, 2010.print.

 Garrow, David. Rising Star. New York: HarperCollins Publishers, 2017.print.

 

By: Liz Hall, Nuclear Medicine Major – IUPUC

 

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