Maybe you have noticed that different generations have different ways of communicating. Over the years and through the ever-changing landscape of digital communication, there seems to be a noticeable pattern between the two major groups. More specifically, while the more mature audience prefer live phone conversations, younger employees prefer simpler methods like IM. There are always exceptions but generally, doing just a brief comparison explains the reason why: Patience and adaptability.
When in doubt, here is a quick and useful way to remember which preference to cater to, by using this acronym: TAP. T = To the Point, A = Adapt, P = Professional. Let’s break this down.
TAP – What does it mean?
T, or To the Point, is about making your conversations short and snappy. Mature generations will respond better to your conversation if they contain clarity, with younger generations appreciating more brevity.
A, or Adapt, is about your flexibility based upon the needs of your audience. This includes empathy and an understanding of what is being discussed. This is where you would reach out to the mature generation via in-person meetings and phone or video calls. In contrast, the younger ones desire respect for their independence, so communication with them would revolve around IM, text, and/or emails.
P, or Professional, is gauging your use of formality versus jargon. Mature conversations can be a bit more formal, showing them respect, with the younger population preferring a more casual, yet still interesting and professional style that captures their attention.
Try using this tool in your attempts to effectively communicate with all generations and see if it improves your success!