Command and Staff Program

ACE Track

Generations

Replies
230
Voices
118
Dr. Mitch Javidi
Instructions:  
  1. Post a new discussion related to the topics covered in this module.  Your post needs to provide specific lessons learned with examples from this module helping you enhance your leadership capacity at work.
  2. After posting your discussion, review posts provided by other students in the class and reply to at least one of them. 
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    Chris Corbin

    The topic of generational differences in the workplace has been on-going for quite some time now. While I have always appreciated that customizing your leadership and management styles to accommodate these differences is useful and productive, I especially liked that this module taught that there are still standard approaches to leadership and management that are effective across all generations. These include but are not limited to 1) ensuring that you commit to practicing effective communication with the understanding that the goal should be to over-communicate; 2) making it a practice to listen and learn before leading; 3) ensuring that rules are applied equally and fairly to all; 4) respecting competence and initiative; 5) giving people the benefit of the doubt; and 6) providing ample opportunities for providing input and for receiving training.

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      Jarod Primicerio

      Chris, I completely agree. While there are numerous ways we can collaboratively progress, there are definitive requirements all must abide to. Communication is key to success, regardless of your generation. Additionally, fairness is a must for all; especially in law enforcement. Good comment.

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      Colby Stewart

      I agree with you Chris ensuring that you commit to practicing effective communication with the understanding the goal should be to over communicate. Good communication is they key to a successful work.

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      Samantha Reps

      I agree completely, communication and how we deliver the message is key. Good communication to get to the end goal is imperative.

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        Being a good communicator is extremely important, and knowing your audience is as important. With the difference in generations has to be taken into consideration when trying to get your message across, and how it is received.

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          Paul Brignac III

          Troy, I agree that being a good communicator is important. While listening to this lecture, I realized that I had not given much thought to the need to communicate differently with different generations. According to this module, different generations respond differently to different things. Due to the diversity of generations in our department, I will consider different avenues of communication for different generations.

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      Travis Linskens

      Agreed! I feel the six approaches you've listed are a static regardless of the generation. Equally as important are the adapted techniques for each generation to tap into their strengths for the department's better good. As leaders, it can be challenging to remember, but each generation outside of our own have solid qualities and bring something unique to the workplace.

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    Kyle Turner

    Within my own organization, I have viewed many generational differences throughout the years that were highlighted in this module, some more obvious than others. The main one being the older generation has a "do as I tell you" approach without explanation where as the younger generation desires more explanation - although I have viewed this as seeking more insight into the thinking that goes with the directive. Also, the youngest generation likes to feel appreciated and values positive feedback, often times for tasks that appear small but they feel have been impactful. Their level of job satisfaction in some cases appears to be related to the positive feedback they receive.

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      Brian Johnson

      Kyle, you are right on point! We need to embrace the needs of our younger workforce and realize just because they don't respond to "do as I tell you" they are still valued members of our department and they are our most valuable asset- our people. They are the future of our profession and they will carry on the legacy as the noblest profession, period.

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      Frank Acuna

      Kyle, I agree the newer generation cannot be managed by the "do as I tell you" approach and they must be given explanations for tasks. This is a foreign idea for a para-military organization. Giving simple explanations to obtain "buy-in" is critical with Millenials and giving them public praise is something they also expect.

      Frank

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        Jason Porter

        That is the exact thing I have to keep telling my self. With a rank structure in tact, most would follow blindly into the fire if their superior told them to. The new generation definitely needs to know why they are doing something.

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      Brad Strouf

      Spot on. Also, the technological skills the younger generation brings to the workforce can be so valuable. IT aside, half of our Gen Y officers are able to troubleshoot and remedy IT issues themselves. The need to positively reinforce this generation is a small price to pay for the resources they bring to the table.

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    Brian Johnson

    As a Baby Boomer myself, I found this module to be very interesting after reflecting on my past 31 years in law enforcement. I've been very blessed during my career to work now for three different departments, which has given me the opportunity to experience and realize how the generational impact on the workforce has been consistent within all three departments. Clearly, my generation has been very authoritative with a strict chain of command norms. I have realized for probably the last 5-10 years that our younger workforce (Millennials) do not work well with this structured environment. Historically, officers leaving the profession for a variety of reasons was always seen as a "big deal," but that has not been the case for the last decade. At least in my experience. As leaders, must adapt to our new workforce and understand that communication and explaining the 'why" is important. Our employees need feedback, thrive on teamwork, and like to explore other ideas on how to get the job done. They truly are the "think outside the box" generation. If we don't change, we will continue to see recruitment and retention as major issues affecting law enforcement while our economy continues to thrive.

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      Chris Corbin

      Brian, I am not a Millennial, but my learning style is such that I always had a far easier time learning when the instructor includes the "why". When someone tries to teach me a new skill simply by demanding that I demonstrate the completion of a series of steps, I really struggle at times. But when the why is included, it is so much easier for me, and I can then help others should the need arise. In recognizing this, I now see that providing the "why" not only helps to satisfy the needs/wants of the Millennial generation, but may also help with others that learn in the manner that I do.

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        ereeves@cityofwetumpka.com

        I completely agree. I'm a Generation X and feel the same way. I've had teachers and leaders use both tactics and it's always easier to learn when you fully understand what your doing and what the outcome should be.

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      Nancy Franklin

      Brian, I also used the learning in this module to reflect on my own personal experiences and expectations that have evolved over my 26 year career in law enforcement. I personally enjoy the diversity that these generation gaps provide in my organization because I think it keeps us relevant, reaching to achieve more and be better, and allows us to connect to our community in a variety of ways. I agree that as leaders we MUST adapt to the diversity of our workforce and cater our leadership styles to meet the needs of our employees.

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        Kyle Phillips

        Nancy, I like your take on being kept relevant by the diversity within the generational gaps. We looked towards the generation before us, to learn from their experience. It was refreshing to hear in this module that the Millennial's prefer leadership training, as this provides insight into how each of us can provide that type of positive presence for the current generation coming up through the ranks.

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    Nancy Franklin

    The lecture was very informative and provided a lot of insight about not only the generational differences and similarities, but also the importance of organizations understanding and adapting to this reality. I see daily examples of the varieties in the types of employees that make up my organization based on generation gaps. I personally see these differences as OPPORTUNITIES to grow and to learn from each other. It is important not just for leaders to recognize the need to adapt their leadership styles to the individuals they supervise, but also for all personnel to remain open-minded and not feel that they or their peers must change. We have to accept that we all bring something unique to our organization and it is that uniqueness that inspires innovation, continues to drive change, and allows us to build bridges in our communities...because the community is also comprised of a variety of generations - each having their own needs and expectations.

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    Frank Acuna

    This module regarding the different generations in the workplace are evident every time I go to work. We do not have any employees at our agency that are Boomers, but the majority of our command falls in the Gen X range. Our patrol staff is made up almost entirely of Millenials and having to manage them being a Gen X'er myself has been fun. I understand the differences in generational needs, their investment and value of the career and their expectations. I have sought to learn the differences and the biggest has been their work ethic. I believe Gen X'ers in Law Enforcement have more loyalty toward their career, whereas Millenials tend to see Law Enforcement as a "Job" and not a career. This tends to go against how the lesson categorized Gen X'ers loyalty. I saw the attitude of Millenials toward Law Enforcement in my previous assignment as a Recruiter/ Background Investigator. It seemed as though those applicants who felt this profession was a calling, were minuscule compared to those who seemingly appeared to wake up one day and think "maybe i'll try to be a cop." It is definitely a different way of thinking and one that is challenging for Gen X'ers to accept, but it is a reality in the workplace and one that we must embrace and learn to work with for the future success of our agencies.

    Frank

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      Dan Wolff

      Frank,

      What you said about the Millennials see law enforcement as a job is exactly what we see as well. When it came to time to hire for patrol from our jails we couldn’t get any response or applications. Their biggest concern is we were not on 12 hour shifts like they were and they felt that they would be working more is on patrol working 8’s. It just seemed that nobody wanted to be the police anymore and were more concerned about the amount of time they would have to spend at work and their days off.

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      Laurie Mecum

      Frank, I agree with you. As HR in my organization, it is very hard to find quality candidates that "have the calling" anymore. Most times now, its because they need a job. There are a few still out there, so I don't want to say all of them.

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    Jason Porter

    The module discussing generations hits on numerous points that we have in our agency. We have old hands that are a year or two from thirty years and we have green hands that are two weeks on the job right out of college. The way we have to lead them differs tremendously. The old hands are a tell me what to do and I will get it done type, where the young folks need to know the why am I having to do this. This poses a challenge in leadership to be able to change leadership practices for the type of employee you are dealing with.

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      This is the current trend that we face in law enforcement today. We need to attract the current Y and future Z generations that embrace technology. Modern policing must also embrace the trend towards technology. The ability to mend old school vs new school thinking will create a strong agency. The traits of all generations mended together can create positive influence up and down the ranks. An agency that remains idle will surely become stagnant and will not retain good personnel and future leaders.

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    Dan Wolff

    As a leader on a patrol shift a majority of our deputies are comprised of Millennials with the exception of a few Generation X. With this dynamic spectrum of personalities, you must change your leadership style accordingly. Treating everyone fair but using different techniques when talking with each individual. When assigning a task, knowing the type of person who takes it depends on what needs to be discussed and how. This will always be in every workplace and adjusting they way you handle these individuals can be crucial.

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      Brian Lewis

      I totally agree with your comments Dan. It's funny, my generation, Gen X, is supposed to like change. How come it's so hard to get my Gen X supervisors to change their style of leadership when it comes to the Millennial generation?

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        Lt. Richard Paul Oubre

        agree with you Dan and Brian. I am a Gex x myself . The leaders of the past really struggled with them changing their leadership styles. the current leaders will have to do a better job of embracing change to deal with the new generations of policeman.I

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    Mike Brown

    Generations
    On the topic of generations I have seen first hand, the differences between my time as an officer and the time now with the new officers. My law enforcement generation followed orders and understood what needed to happen for the mission to be complete. Now the process is much slower because we have to explain every aspect of what needs to be done, then wait around to answer questions before the mission is complete. Things move much slower now and the face to face interaction is all but gone.

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      Joey Prevost

      I could see how it could be easy to lose patience coming up under an older style of leadership, where orders were obeyed without question and today. Younger generations will question everything and want to know the how and the why. If we take to time to explain it will give us credibility and make us more effective as leaders.

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      Drauzin Kinler

      Mike, I agree. I remember when I became a police officer, there was no such thing as an FTO program. After the academy, I rode a weekend shift with another officer. When I returned back to work, I was given a set of keys for my patrol unit. I had to figure things out on my own, and I can't image that happening today. As you mentioned, everything moves at a slower pace, so one would think that with all the time invested, the final product would be so much better. Thirty-one years later, it is still the same. There are a handful of quality, proactive police officers that have the ability to handle their own. However, the others are there for the money, not because they had a passion to be a police officer. This is why learning these leadership skills are so important. We have to figure out what makes the millennials tick, because it won't be long before they are handed the ropes for good. While attending a leadership training session years ago, the instructor predicted a time would come where more police officers are leaving this line of work and agencies are unable to replace them with qualified candidates. I am afraid that this time has arrived.

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    Joey Prevost

    Looking back on when i was a young policeman just coming on, I see the difference in my bosses back then and the ones coming on now. Back then, accolades were not as prevalent as they didn't believe in praising for the job you were supposed to be doing anyway. Yet even then, I remember wishing i had more feedback. Not that it is the same, but I have fallen into this myself with my own children at home and not realizing it. They want recognition for doing something and there I am thinking it was something they were supposed to be doing anyway. The younger generations operate better with more feedback, whereas older generations may see it as micro-management.

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      Judith Estorge

      The "trophy generation" has not helped our young people today and believe this practice has only disillusioned them. Joey, I agree more feedback in my childhood would have been appreciated and maybe helped build my self-confidence. It is a fine line between disciplining our kids and coddling them.

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      Jarvis Mayfield

      I agree Joey in the early years of my career it was very hard or not at all to get an accolade for doing your good. But with the differences in the generation the "Gen X " worker require you to give accolades to them or they will feel like they not doing their jobs. Older generations did their jobs because it was their job.

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    Drauzin Kinler

    The topic of generations has allowed me to review how each generation thinks. One of the many reasons why I enrolled in this leadership program was to help me understand the millennial generation. My current view of this generation is that if technology was lost, millennials could not function as the other generations have in the past. At some point, we will need to depend on the millennials generation to pick up where we leave off. Every day I challenge myself to instill good work ethics into this generation. This is the generation that must have constant attention and instructions for every task they are assigned. This generation was provided technology but not common sense. They may be more educated and technically savvy but if you put them into a situation where they cannot use google the outcome will usually result in failure. Millennials are good people outside of the work environment and do have many good traits. It is unfortunate that the things they should be focus on such as politics are not important to them. I hope that by the time we need this generation to step up and take the lead they will be able to endure the challenges they will face.

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    Jarod Primicerio

    There has been numerous training courses within my Department addressing the generational differences. After reviewing the course materials, I agree that while there are differences, there are many similarities across the generations. I think one of the takeaways is disregard the biases and give the benefit of the doubt. I have loved some of my new hires as they bring a new and needed element to this profession. Once you figure out how their clock ticks, they are solid. So much has to do with age, as stated in this module. Not necessarily the generation, but maturity and life experience.

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      David Cupit

      I agree with you Jarod, I have dealt with a boomer that acted like a millennial. We are all motivated differently and once i figured out what motivated him, everything was improved quickly.

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      Lance Leblanc

      Jarod, I couldn't agree more. I find most of the issues have to do with maturity more than generational differences. In law enforcement, no matter what generation you are from we all try to reach a common goal.

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    David Cupit

    This lecture has a lot of valuable lessons. I have seen a lot the characteristics of the different generations demonstrated in my interactions with different employees. I found that the ones listed in this lecture are right on the mark.

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      Chasity Arwood

      I agree with you, there are many valuable lessons in this lecture. Dealing with different types of employees is difficult at times.

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      Royce Starring

      I agree. This generation question authority and in my day when you were told to do something if it was lawful you just did it.

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    Henry Dominguez

    This was quite an interesting and very informative lecture. After reading all of your posts, it sounds like we are all in the same position. In law enforcement, we have had to adapt the way we police, the different laws that come into or out of effect, and the addition of different technologies that come up. This is also true for the generations. Baby boomers are no more in our organization and the days of hiring either someone with a college degree or a military background are over. I have heard, while doing backgrounds, applicants say the only reason they applied was because nothing else was available to apply for or they just thought it was cool. The days of having loyalty toward an agency or even the law enforcement profession are limited. However, having good, effective communication and listen skills toward the newer generations, I think can keep the profession noble and respected.

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    Magda Fernandez

    This was quite an interesting lecture and module. At my agency the majority of our patrol officers are Millennials and the majority of the supervisors and command staff are Gen X-ers. It has been a learning experience for both generations working together to bridge the gap and face challenges together. Many of the challenges that most people find with Millennials can be seen as opportunities. At my agency we have many eager, willing and ready young officers wanting to know how they can get involved. They are innovative and think outside of the box and deliver creative solutions to problems we are faced with. We will always be faced with generational challenges i believe the difference will be how we respond to them. Millennials will perhaps deal with similar challenges with Generation Z enters the workforce.

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    Magda Fernandez

    I agree with you Jarod, the majority of our patrol officers are Millennials. Their maturity in how they carry themselves, deal with people and communicate varies across the board . I also agree it all falls back on ho they were raised and what life experiences they bring with them. It seems more and more that many of the applicants we are seeing have very limited life experience and have a hard time relating to issues they encounter and/or they lack the ability to manage critical incidents.

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    Colby Stewart

    This lecture about how the different generations think and want to be treated, After looking back into the way i deal with different people and their attitudes in the past. As a good leader we need to be able to know who we are speaking to and how we can communicate effectively with different generations and people in general this lesson has taught me a great deal on dealing with other generations.

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    Lance Leblanc

    Since my time with my agency, it's funny to look at how the generations have changed. When I started my employment baby boomers were the larger part of the workforce. Now they are almost all gone. The generation X is now the supervision and the Millennials are mostly all the lower ranks.

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      Christopher Savoie

      Lance,
      I agree. I have seen a increased retirement of the Baby Boomer Generation in my department. What I have also noticed is that they are more and more disgruntle prior to retiring. In the past I have attributed this to them being older and their reluctance to change, but what I have also come to understand and believe is that as more Generation X employees become leaders, the Generation X leaders are failing to understand the generational differences. This is causing the Generation X leaders to manage all the employees the same. Since the majority of the workforce is now Generation X and Millennial's we tend to be more hands on with the employees, which most Baby Boomer's take offense too, causing them to feel like they have no other option then to retire.

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    Chasity Arwood

    I found this lecture very interesting. The generational gap that exists between supervisors and lower ranking officers sometimes causes issues when to comes to supervision. There is a definite need for supervisors to adapt to the needs to subordinates. Most of the patrol officers at my agency are Millennials, who require more feedback and need to be supervised differently. They also tend to have less life experience to draw from when dealing with others.

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      Ray Bonillas

      Chasity,

      I enjoyed your post and agreed Millennials have less life experience to draw from. In our agency, we are doing backgrounds on individuals that are stilling living at home with their parents. They have spent most of their time getting an education and at times two degrees and no work experience, but up to their eyeballs in student debt. However, what I find interesting is who is going to have it right in the end. Many (Baby-Boomers) live for retirement, while Millennials live for the now. Who really lived the best work life balance? Only time will tell.

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        Jarvis Mayfield

        Ray you are correct. Millennial's do live for the here and now. But I find that they also are looking for trustworthy leadership. If they can trust you they tend to value things to teach them. Millennial's will not work for retirement but will plan for the next party or drinking session.

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    Brian Lewis

    I remember starting my career in the early 90's and be despised by the Boomer generation. And now my generation despises the Millennial generation. All my supervisors are Gen X, and we've been racking our brains trying to figure out how to manage the Millennial generation. But what this module brought into light for me is that we haven't been taking into account how the Gen X sergeants are wired to supervise. My generation is comfortable doing it "on their own." And we supervise the younger generation expecting them to do it "on their own." I feel generational training on the differences in the workplace must be mandatory training for up and coming leaders in my organization.

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      Samuel Lucia

      I too find myself saying, "darn kids" sometimes, and you're right about trying to figure out how to manage them, its tough. Do think they're smarter and better at what they do that we were? Many are, but you have to let them show you.

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    Ray Bonillas

    The breakdown between the various generations was very informative. I was born in 1966, which would make me a Generation-X, but I fall in line more with the Baby-Boomers. It must be because of my upbringing. As a commander, I find it very difficult to appease the needs of my sergeants as they range between Generation X and Y. Generation – X prefers a credible leader while a Generation – Y prefers a leader who listens. In my opinion to break through the various generations requires a lot of listening and effective communication to achieve the organizations mission.

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      Clint Patterson

      Ray, at times I feel the same way as you. I, too, am a Generation X but was raised with predominately Baby Boomer upbringing. This has also caused me to feel more comfortable with “old school” leadership styles rather than “new school” Generation Y or Z.

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      David Ehrmann

      A lot of listening is required. We must recognize the differences between the generations and use our leadership techniques to define what works for one generation as opposed to another. Like you stated, one wants a creditable leader, and the other wants someone who listens. Being a creditable leader is being a leader who listens. Finding the balance is the challenge.

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    Judith Estorge

    This was an interesting and worthwhile section. Learning how to supervise and lead the younger, every changing, generation is too important. I especially liked the time line at the beginning of the video series which described every generation and their titles. In the "lost generation" and "silent generation", my parents era, we moved into a new type of individual with each new generation feeling more entitled and not knowing anything about struggle.

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    Samuel Lucia

    The subject is interesting and a hard nut to crack for leaders. I'll never forget what an older, wiser, very accomplished mentor said to me maybe 15 years ago in regard to millennials, "Don't expect them to conform to you. You must conform to them."

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    Royce Starring

    I agree with the lesson about respect for authority. Generation X and Millennial 's are different from bombers in the aspect they do not respect authority. When I first started in law enforcement we were dealing mostly boomers criminal acts were as violent and they had respect for parents as well as law enforcement. The Generation X and Millennial's lack respect for authority and during this generation the crimes being commit are more violent.

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    Christopher Savoie

    My department has experienced the problems with generational issues. What I took away from this module , was the that you had to be flexible in your approach with each generational employee. You can not use a blanketed management style, because of the generational differences between the Baby Boomer and the younger generations. I feel the information learned in this module will help me in being a better leader in my department.

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    Clint Patterson

    The history of generations is so apparent in law enforcement. As a Generation X, I hired on the police department and had the honor to work with many Baby Boomer generational leaders. The leading style was very straight forward, kind of like drinking coffee black. The leaders wanted the job done and expected you to work hard, while handwriting reports without errors. But as my generation became leaders in our agency, the leadership was slightly reformed. Generation X leaders were introduced to computers with typed reports where corrections were easily fixable. Furthermore, the new Millennial generation leaders are so much more technologically advanced, work less hard than other generations, and are fancier then Starbucks coffee’s.

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      Lance Landry

      Clint, you literally made me laugh out loud. I believe there is an acronym or some crazy cartoon face they use to short hand that, but I will have to check with one of my millennial subordinates to confirm. I think your comment was spot on. There are a lot of similarities in how you and I entered and worked our way through the ranks of law enforcement. You brought me back to those hand written report days and the challenges I personally faced learning what a computer could accomplish, then actually doing it. It is refreshing to know I have an entire workforce that can remind me where the on/off button is on my computer. Technology is king these days so I believe the future is in good hands.

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      dpertuis@stcharlessheriff.org

      Yes Clint, I as well was fortunate enough to have the 4 to 5 page reports handwritten. A couple of mistakes might be fixed with white-out, but more often than not, it was torn up and thrown away to start over. I believe the millennial generation is struggling because they have not had the opportunity to do it the way we did it. A lot of the expectation is I want it and I want to be given it now.

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    Laurie Mecum

    I think most people agree that today’s generation of younger people in the workforce just don’t have the work ethic and drive of those in the past. We are hiring people right out of high school and for most it’s their first job. Like discussed in the modules, maybe a different training style for the millennial's would help. I don’t think all of them fit the stereotype of the generation description. There are some that come to work and want to be there and learn.

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      Christian Johnson

      I agree, Laurie. We have had several millennials that do not fit the stereotype, but we sure have had plenty that do. Unless you communicate with them differently they don't listen. The need to train them differently obviously would be as well.

      I think this module gives us a lot to consider going forward.

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    David Ehrmann

    The issue of generation differences is something that we as creditable leaders will face throughout our careers. Just listening to this module I remember the differences I had as a young officer with my supervisors who were veterans. After being promoted through the ranks, I then began to reflect on the employees I had and the differences we faced mainly due to generational differences. As leaders, in order to create the best work environment possible while maintaining the mission of the agency, we need to understand the needs and wants of the newer generations and mold our leadership style in a manner that will enhance a relationship between leader and follower.

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    Amanda Pertuis

    When I first started, we had mostly Boomers in leadership roles and I was able to learn a lot of my work ethic from them. Now we have Gen X and Millennials as a majority of our leaders. This module gave me a refresher and new information for how to communicate with them. One thing I learned is how they’re closer to their parents. I can definitely see that from my interactions with some of them.

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    Christian Johnson

    As a Watch Commander in a Correctional Center, I deal with each generation almost daily. Many of our new officers are 19-21 and this is their first job. They see things wildly different than I do, of course. It will always be a work in progress managing them, while managing older personnel as well. However, this module gives us much needed insight in to how a balance and cohesion can be attained.

    I will literally use what I've taken from this module daily.

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    Roanne Sampson

    In this module I learned about different generations and their contributions to the work place. Two generations stuck out for me and that's baby boomers and millennials. Baby boomers are traditional, workaholics who respect authority. They value their health and wellness. I find millennials have self-esteem issues because they constantly need to expose themselves to the world through social media. I believe many are living a superficial lifestyle and are very narcissistic. Leaders will have to learn how to adjust their leadership skills to fit the millennials.

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      Rocco Dominic, III

      This is so true. Baby boomers are more lets get the job done, while millennial's are more lets do it this way.

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    Rocco Dominic, III

    This module described the differences between the generations. As the Watch Commander in the Correctional Center we have mostly baby boomers and millennial's. The difference in their work ethic is very noticeable. The baby boomers are more let’s get the job done, while the millennial's are more dependent on technology and how it helps them get the job completed. As leaders we need to be able to balance the differences to effectively complete the job assignment.

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    mmcnab@spokanepolice.org

    “I am a Washington Association of Sheriffs and Police Chiefs (WASPAC) evaluator and am testing the system”

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    McKinney

    They are very few Baby Boomers left within my organization. With that, Generation X and Y represent most of our organizational members. I do remember when I was the young guy on the block, and I had to adjust to the senior members. They had a lot of work in mentoring us, but we inherited some of their cultural values. Now the time has reached us, and we are mentoring the younger generation where they are also reverse mentoring us. I am fortunate within my career that I've been provided an opportunity to work with a variety of individuals from different periods. At the close of the day, if that is such a thing, we are all working together for the same purpose regardless of the generational differences.

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      Donnie

      The module has taught me to open my mind a little more to the needs of the younger generation. That whether I like it or not, I’m passing the work load off to them. And eventually, they will change the way things are done and I will be moving out of the work place. While our values do not seem to line up, they do overlap. And I agree with you, at the end of the day we all have a common goal.

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      Burke

      I agree. I find myself in the middle between "millennials" and "baby boomers". It has been a challenge finding a common ground with the younger officers but I remind myself that once I was that younger officer. This keeps me focused and wanting to help and learn from them.

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    Lance Landry

    I work for an agency that I would personally consider young. All positions within the administration are held by those of Generation X, including my Sheriff, who I will confess is several years younger than myself. Most of the workforce is comprised of Millennial/Generation Y workers. We all worked for and were trained by leaders from the Baby Boomer generation. I am quite sure they were not comfortable with “the future” that our Generation would bring when we began our fledgling careers. Just as we as Generation X wonder how we can possibly leave our legacy in the hands of these Millennials/Generation Y. What must the future hold? The truth of the matter is each has gained life experience in different ways. Our generational diversity in the workplace only makes us stronger, and should never make us fear what the future holds. Each generation has strengths and weakness than can complement the others. I gained some new tools for the tool bag in Zemke’s outline on how to retain Gen Y officers.

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      Lieutenant John Champagne

      I agree that the Baby Boomers must have thought they were doomed, passing the torch to Gen X. Each generation has its faults but do not underestimate their ability to get the job done. It may not be the way we would do it, as long as the results are the same.

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      Well expressed. the ability to combine the strengths of all employees is important. I believe we worry about the next generation because they don't do things like we feel they should be done. However, they are raised with a a different tool set that we were. They are taught and comfortable with technology we are struggling to learn to use. Respecting the differences and realizing there is more than one way to accomplish a goal is important. And a smile and "good job" can go a long way today.

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        McKinney

        I agree with your discussion point that we are different because of generational exposures. Having more than one thought on achieving a goal is always an opportunity I welcome. Allowing buy in with your team members and showing appreciation will pay dividends for the future.

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    Donnie

    Having listened to the modules on the different generations I pretty much discovered why I feel like I’m more dedicated to my job than that of younger generations. I do believe in the family unit and being dedicated to it as well but sometimes sacrifice of that is required. The hardest part for me is keeping up with the technology. It seems like every time I get comfortable with something it updates or changes to something more advanced. The millennial generation adapts to this much easier. I still find that leading them is a challenge…for me. I have learned in these modules that this group needs constant feedback. To me it appears to be needy and coddling. Maybe it’s something I must adapt to. That’s the hard part. I retired from the military because its values were beginning to not line up with mine. I don’t typically sacrifice my values. This may give the impression that I don’t treat everyone the same. This is not true. I absolutely do. If anything, this module has taught me that younger generations are not as lazy as I perceived them to be. They just have a different ‘way’, as we all do.

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      Major Stacy Fortenberry

      Donnie, I'm not convinced its a Boomer vs x vs y thing. My personal dedication to the job increased with age and responsibility. When I was hired the administration was from the greatest gen and they said much the same about my group is now saying about the Y's.

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      jbanet@bossiersheriff.com

      Donnie,
      I totally agree with your points here. I too believe in a strong family unit/relationship but recognize that sacrifices must be made. I am considered in the Gen X, so it was weird for me to her that Gen X is not overly loyal to their jobs, but more loyal their families. I also used to believe that the younger generations like millennials and gen z were just lazy and didn't want to work. It wasn't until I learned what motivated them, that I was able to actually supervise them.

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      cbeaman@ascensionsheriff.com

      I agree about being more dedicated to the job than younger generations. In my experience the younger generations want to just put in their 8 hours of work and go home. We all know that law enforcement is not just a 9 to 5 job. Getting younger generations to work overtime on a case is like pulling teeth.

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        chasity.sanford@stjohnsheriff.org

        I do believe that our younger generations do find it harder for them to get motivated about the job. Some do just believe that it's just a job and that it's nothing more than that. It really takes motivation to get your younger generation on the move, I totally agree with you.

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    Burke

    Having a better understanding of each others life experiences helps us in creating common ground to work together. While each generation has its own strengths and weaknesses, working together for the betterment of our agency is the goal.

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    Lieutenant John Champagne

    After completing this section, I now understand why some of the individuals I supervised had to be continually told they were doing a good job for doing their job. One particular individual would mope around until he got that little praise, then he seemed to light up. It was a bit frustrating on my part because praise was not something I handed out like candy. I now understand the reason he needed it. Moving forward, I will be able to understand the Millennials at work and the Gen Z (at home), who will be in the workplace before I retire.

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      wdanielfield@ibervilleso.com

      Yea John i agree some individuals i supervised had to be continually told they were doing a good job, cause they complain if you didn't. The things they were doing at the time to impress administration and it tick me off, cause it was ass kissing they were doing.

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    Major Stacy Fortenberry

    Boomers prefer leaders with credibility Millennials prefer leaders who listen. I think this is more age related than a particular date you were born. The trick is to be both leaders as they are mutually supportive. While listening to this course I kept thinking of a particular young Deputy and couldn't help but smile at some of the stuff he does is spot on with the courses descriptions. what I have not fully recognized was this young mans true desire to help the community. His constant questioning is just his desire to do better with a little bit of needing recognition thrown in. I will find him on his next shift to tell him he is appreciated.

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    As with most systems that attempt to place individuals in broad groups the use of generations must be carefully viewed as generalizations. While the overall "characteristics" of each group is founded in part on some truth, the concept is also similar to stereotyping. The concepts can give us a starting point on where to possibly start looking as far as training styles, leadership styles, and employee expectations. That said, the concepts can not give us the true characteristics of individuals. Often times the "maturity" of employees is a direct result of experience. An officer in my area who started in law enforcement 25 - 30 years ago has worked through 9-11, Hurricanes Katrina, Rita, Ike, and about a dozen more, a shift in the paradigm of law enforcement (to include CIT, de-escalation, and bias recognition) and now COVID 19 (pandemic including a national shutdown). New employees coming into the work force will not have that experience no matter how much education they get.

    The true benefit to recognizing generations is in reminding us to be innovative and flexible with our training and recognition of employees. Having a reward system that is just as well thought out as our disciplinary system is important. Identifying how to make the job rewarding and increasing "loyalty."

    There is no doubt there are differences in the "generations." I believe the biggest difference is simply the linear concept of time. Older generations have more experience, more time on Earth. Younger generations are raised with technology that was not even thought of by the older generations. By acknowledging the differences we can work on bridging the gaps.

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      mtroscla@tulane.edu

      I think you are correct that trying to put people in certain "groups" just because of when they are born may not be ideal but it is a good starting place for education planning. I also think that rate of maturation may be more important overall for learning aptitude.

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      cvillere@stcharlessheriff.org

      I like how you pointed out the importance of having a reward system that is just as well thought out as our disciplinary system to increase loyalty. I think that is something we sometimes neglect to follow through on regularly. In learning about the generational differences, it seems that it may be vital in retaining our good employees.

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    jbanet@bossiersheriff.com

    This module was very helpful in realizing the different motivations of each generation. As a leader it is important to understand and know the difference in generations, but also understand that they can be similar. Don't judge people just based upon there generational title, because some of the best people I have worked with came from Generation Y. One strategy that I learned in this module, that I could see myself implementing was the idea of training individuals based upon generational needs,

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    cbeaman@ascensionsheriff.com

    I just learned a lot by watching this lecture. It was fun learning about all of the different generations and times throughout our history. It refreshed my memory on several different things that I basically forgot about. I do find the young workers do not just take orders well. They want you to explain why you are telling them to do something. Even though it may seem like they are being disrespectful, they actually are just people that want to give their opinions and in return want you to listen to them. I have a few different generations in my office which sometimes causes problems because they think different and have different outlooks. I also find my younger detectives need to be praised and acknowledged. The older detectives just want to get the job done.

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    chasity.sanford@stjohnsheriff.org

    In the learning of Module 1 in lesson 2, learning about the different generations and how they adapt to the workplace and attitudes was very helpful. Learning this information gave me a better insight on why certain people from different ages may act a certain way. I myself is a millennial and the things that were said were very true in a lot of ways.

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      Adam Gonzalez

      I also found the definition of my generation (X) to be accurate. However, and I am aware that this has been said throughout the module, differences and unique attributes that are outside of the generalized definitions provided are common for all within a particular generation. To the core, we are all different people shaped by many of our experiences and outside influences. We can do well to always remember that every person has the innate interest in being successful and to accomplish better. Thank you for your post!

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    mtroscla@tulane.edu

    It seem to me that while there are differences between the generations and what motivates them, that as people age that the goals and needs start to have more similarities than differences. Perhaps the generational differences are more related to the rate that people mature as much as the environment that they were raised in.

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    guttuso_fa@jpso.com

    I have always found this topic interesting. You can definitely see the differences in generations but I think they crossover much more. I have noticed that the millennial generation does not mind doing work, they just want to know why they need to do certain thing a certain way. Which if you are not careful can rub someone from my generation wrong as we just kind of just went out and did what was asked without question for the most part.

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      cody.hoormann@stjamessheriff.com

      I agree with millennial's want to know why they are doing a task a certain way. I liked how the module explained that this is due to the way they were educated. I never looked at or realized that if they are educated this way, it only makes sense that the behavior will come with them to the work force. It only means that as leaders we have to learn each generational way so that we be help them as much as they are helping us.

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        sid.triche@stjohnsheriff.org

        After working with several generational groups, i had the most difficult time initially with Millennial's. Since they always asked "why?" While Baby Boomers and Gen Xers would give the expression of give me my task and get out of my way. Working with Millennial's is something we all must learn to adjust too and work with.

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      michael-beck@lpso.net

      I have noticed the same thing from the Millennials who work under my watch. I have adapted my style of leadership to include the things I needed to know - Why? I have found sometimes they have a much better way of doing things, sometimes more efficiently, and with the greater use of technology than when I started. I guess it does not matter how it is we get from A to B as long as it is right, it's the journey that counts

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      Lieutenant Dustin Jenkins

      I agree with the notion that the constant questioning and need for reassurance of the Gen Y's can be seen and taken in a bad manner. I admit I have had negative reactions to the "why?" after giving instructions. This lesson has opened my eyes as to why that questioning was taking place.

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    I understand the Generational differences that we have in America. I also know that we all come from different backgrounds. The one thing that I struggle with is people not wanting to work as hard as I do.

    I went to a class called how to survive Millennials, and work with them in law enforcement. I will not lie. I thought this class was going to be a joke; however, it was informative and provided me some different avenues and lenses to look at.
    If you know what the different generations want, you can manage and have them achieve not only department goals, but their intentions.

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    Adam Gonzalez

    Through this module, I have learned many of the differences and unique perspectives regarding the various generations that we now have in our workforce. Through these differences, explanations and examples provided, there are several threads of commonality that work its way through each generation as well. The perception of things may be one-of-a-kind but each generation has the desire to succeed. Each generation appears anxious to work for the life that they desire. These traits are so very useful in helping to lead those within our command that we have been entrusted to lead.

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    cody.hoormann@stjamessheriff.com

    This module helped me to understand that even though there different generations mixed together in the work force they all have some of the same common goals in life. They all have the desire to perform well and do great in life. Though they all are very different in the aspects of how they may get the job done, they all finish whatever project they are work to finish. The different generations thrive off of each other. Where one generation may not be strong in one area, another generation is and can pick up that slack.

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    sid.triche@stjohnsheriff.org

    The modules did a great job explaining the different generations and their ways around a problem. They were correct about the older generations not wanting as much supervision, but Millennial's feel pretty comfortable asking the question "Why?" and/or constantly wanting feedback. I was sent to a "Working with Millennial's" class and it taught me that their questions aren't coming from a place of disrepute, it was just their life experience and teachings.

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      anthony.joseph@stjamessheriff.com

      I agree, the Millennials are willing to complete any task given, but always need to know why the job is required; this is a result of the teaching culture they grew up in.

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      This module was spot on for our department. We still have "old school" cops inside our agency, however about 75% of the department has less than 10 years experience. This module opened my eyes as to why we as supervisors face certain challenges or push back from certain groups of officers and its due to the generational gap and how the learn and respond to their leaders.

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    michael-beck@lpso.net

    Within our organization we are fortunate to work with four generations of people, all of whom give a differing perspective on their jobs and job satisfaction. Most of the people in upper command are members of the end of Boomer generation. Mid-range supervisors are mostly comprised of Generation X. The newer deputies are our Millennials. I did mention we had four generations and the members of the Silent Generation are mostly part time workers, who are mainly supplementing their retirement income, or even doing it as volunteers. I see how each of our generations is divided but yet we work for a common cause and I especially talking with the older members of the agency as they provide an insight on life that very few people now-a-days possess.

    I also have seen where we are divided and I myself am guilty of it. When I was a rookie, I used to complain about working conditions; bad cars, writing reports, and all of the unnecessariness of portions of the job. As part of Gen X reporting to Baby Boomers, I would hear the stories of “back in my day…” and that I should be thankful for the improvements which were made for better working conditions. Now that I am a supervisor and we have a ton of new technologies, better pay, better supervision (just tooting my horn), I have heard similar gripes, but they include the why do we have to do x, y, z add ons. I used find myself recounting how bad it was in my day and how I had to walk to work, uphill, in ten feet of snow.

    I have become more cognizant of these types of rebuttals and remember that I was once this guy or gal, just trying to do my job more efficiently. I still tell “war stories” but I only recount them to inspire people to show how far we have come and that we still have miles to go.

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    anthony.joseph@stjamessheriff.com

    This lecture was really informative on the different types of generations today in organizations. It has also given me insight into how to lead and understand the thoughts of each type of generation.

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    Lieutenant Dustin Jenkins

    This module has helped me realize that some of my deputies that have constant questions when given "orders' are only seeking validation for a task and reasoning behind why the task is requested a certain way. I always took it as more of a disrespectful action, which now I can see that it was actually more of an educational experience for them. I will definitely look at these opportunities in a different light knowing what I now know about the different views from different generations. This lesson also shows that while we all have generational differences at play within our agency, managing the different views can actually help to get jobs done with better outcomes.

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      steven.brignac@stjamessheriff.com

      Agreed Jenkins, I used to feel the same way and get aggravated when questioned about something. Now I just look at it as a learning experience everyday for them.

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        dgros@stcharlessheriff.org

        You’re right. Understanding each generation helps us identify with them, despite what generation we may be from.

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    ereeves@cityofwetumpka.com

    As Generation X, this module has helped me understand a little more about the millennials along with the other generations. Understanding the mindset helps tremendously when trying to put the right people in the right places for the best results. It also helps in dealing with unity throughout the department.

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    steven.brignac@stjamessheriff.com

    I enjoyed learning about the training differences between the different generations as well as retention possibilities. I always knew that generation difference were there, just not how to properly identify all and how to best manage a mixed group. I do witness some people who you would think are in one generation but by behavior, they identify or seem to be part of a different generation.

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      blaurent@stcharlessheriff.org

      I am one of those who fall into the Millennial category, but my character traits would put me in another generation. I believe these tools will help us with the generational differences, but there are exceptions to every rule. I think that once you learn your personnel character, it will give us more insight into what generation they should be categorized. After learning what generation they fall into, it will then help us to lead that person.

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      Lt. Mark Lyons

      I have had similar experiences with younger individuals who exhibited characteristics of older generations.

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    As a newly appointed supervisor, I supervise multiple detectives that cover several generations. Detectives ages range from their 60's to as young as 24. This module was extremely helpful in understanding the different responses as well as the different questions I receive from each detective across the generation gap. The statement made by Stanley McChrystal, "leaders, can let you fail and not be a failure" was a powerful statement and a reminder that you can learn valuable lessons during a failure.

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    wdanielfield@ibervilleso.com

    This module enlightened me on the several generations in the work place. I considered myself in the silent generation when i was promoted to sergeant. I supervised multiple deputies that covered several generations and the communication gap between us. The lack of communication created problems sometimes when they surpass me to go to the lieutenant even though i was their direct supervisor. I understand now i was dealing with generation x, not loyal to their employer.

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    clouatre_kj@jpso.com

    This module definitely drove home what I have recognized for several years now, but didn't fully understand. I'm in my mid forties and have been in law enforcement for 24 years now. My generation was taught chain of command and don't over step those lines. We were told what to do and went and did it. If we didn't understand and couldn't figure it out, we went to our peers and/or our immediate supervisor and asked for help. Never in a million years would I have considered going to my commander to ask anything. Nowadays, it is quite the norm, mostly because I have recognized that the are extremely inquisitive and do want to learn. I have had to definitely change my way of thiking and commiunication when dealing with the younger generation. As discussed by Instructor Snyder, the millennial generation is the trophy generation, they want recognition and are demanding. But if you can recognize this, and feed their need, I certainly can see their effort is the same, just different approch to mine.

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      I agree with your point about the chain of command. As a young officer, I might say hell to the chief, if passing in the hallway, but unless asked, or ordered, I was not going to talk to him about anything, dealing with the job. It was the system that we were taught.

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    This video gives you insight to how the last few generations all meld together. The ability in law enforcement, military, and similar services all share the ability to adapt and overcome all types of events. The ability to use our generational experiences can be applicable from young to old. A true leader should have the ability to learn, listen, adapt, and train themselves and their personnel to rely on all experience in their ranks. We can truly learn from all generations.

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      Captain Jessica Jo Troxclair

      I agree, I have been in the corrections field for 19 years and I belong to Gen X. The best tool I have used with the different generations I lead is to listen. I can always learn something, adapt to change, and help my subordinates succeed. For me it's not about separating their differences, it's about building their similarities.

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    I believe that it is very important to pigeon hole someone to a generation because of age or the year that they were born. other factors, such as age of their parents, socio-economic status, and geography have to be taken into account. I do agree that training styles have to be taken into account and many studies state that there are four distinct type of adult learners, but many agencies, even larger ones cannot alter their training strategies to specifically target the different styles or generations.

    The lecture was on direct point when it stated that all must follow policies and requirements. As for the digital age, yes I do not know a Gen Y officer that is not connected to his/her phone and social media. That does not always transfer to work skills involving technology. I have seen many younger officers dismiss training that deals with some sort of technology and they believe that they will figure it out, on their own. I have had some of these officers come to me and ask for help. When I ask them why they disregarded the training, most will say that they did not believe that they would ever use it or there were other officers that liked that type of work. These officers are usually very sincere and the next time training is offered, they are enthusiastic.

    Generational divide and conflict has become more of an issue, in police work, and I believe it is going to become more of an issue as time goes on.

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    dpertuis@stcharlessheriff.org

    I found this module to be really enjoyable and eye-opening. It has explained and made me understand some as to why not just subordinates, but the millennial generation we deal with on the street, has to question anything and everything you ask of them. No, I 100% don't agree with it, but I think it has a lot to do with police being questioned on the street and a lot of it is looked at as a lack of respect for law enforcement. This in turn leads to hostility between the officer and the person the officer has encountered. In reality we are dealing with a whole new younger generation of persons we are dealing with a lot of time on a daily basis. These people have a completely different mindset that we have to be aware of when interacting with them.

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      mmoscona@floodauthority.org

      This is true on the street and to some extent to those under our command. I'm of the baby boomer generation and I don't need an explanation for everything I'm told to do. But our younger officers question everything and need an explanation as to why they need to do something. It can be maddening sometimes, but if we take the time to understand the characteristics of their generation, it makes it easier.

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      Sergeant James Schueller

      I think that is a great observation, that being questioned on street interactions comes off as a lack of respect to law enforcement. While that may definitely still be the case in some (a lot?) of encounters, some of them may just be the generational difference and tendency to ask/question directives. That is especially important to keep in mind in today's environment and social media impact- if we interpret it as disrespect and respond with hostility, we are perpetuating the negativity that is so often unjustly being placed on us. From supervising this generation to encounters on the street, we have to be mindful of the differences and how they can work to our advantage- or hurt us.

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    blaurent@stcharlessheriff.org

    I learned a lot from this module. I am considered a Millennial, but I do not have the same traits as a Millennial. As a kid, I was always told, do what I say, and that was its end. Learning the Millennial characteristics and what they expect from us as leaders will help me bridge the gap. Many times I am asked why and get annoyed, but I need to take an in-depth breath process and explain why. Lastly, I learned that I need to approach my officers differently, depending on their generational differences.

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    dgros@stcharlessheriff.org

    We learned in Area 1, Module #6 that Millenials are not are leadership challenge. I disagreed with that based on my perspective. This module gave me another viewpoint as we speak about generations. As with the Great Generation, I’m sure they looked at my generation, X, as my generation may look at the Millenial generation. Whether you are a baby boomer or gen X, we are all supervising the millennial generation, and we are all complaining about them. As an academy instructor, I see the millennial generation. What they are is interested in. What we hope they want is the desire to do what we’ve learned to do and carry on the traditions after we are gone. We are responsible for their outcome. When you put it into perspective, with this module, Erik Therwanger was right.

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    cvillere@stcharlessheriff.org

    Instructor Lorraine Snyder’s comment that “given that employees have different work and communication styles, it is important to be aware of, respect, and work within those differences” is the epitome of this module. As leaders and managers in an organization, we can get to others in the workplace, learn their unique needs, values, strengths and weaknesses and work with them to continually develop their full potential in the workplace to maximize our production as a team.

    I like how assumptions about generational biases rather than valid differences are the root of generation conflict and how we can use assertive communication which is clear and respectful, to redirect the negative energy to take advantage of the unique skills and experience of everyone in the workplace. I like the idea of making coaching mandatory in performance reviews, so many times we are quick to rate someone else’s performance but fail as leaders to give them concrete action steps for improvement. We can use steps such as this to continue to develop and empower our employees to strive to reach their full potential.

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    I think this module was informative. However, as leaders, we have to take our time and learn our subordinates. In my department, it is mostly millennial that make up the staff. I can honestly say that they are different from each other. They learn, speak, and work differently. I often find supervisors prejudging individuals based on their generation group.

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      dlavergne@stcharlessheriff.org

      I'm guilty of having a bias towards millennials. This module really opened my eyes to the similarities between gen-x and millennials.

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    Lt. Mark Lyons

    While watching this training module I was able to recognize a lot of generational differences that were described. As the Training Coordinator for our corrections bureau, I have had the privilege of working with pretty much every generation type discussed. There are times when it gets frustrating working with some of the younger staff because of the different set of priorities that each generation has. Same with the older generations to. Especially trying to train them on new computer systems or software.

    After watching this training module, I have a different perspective on the differences between each generation. I plan to use the information I learned in this module to help modify our training methods.

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      Back in the day I too was a training coordinator and I shudder at the thought of using my old techniques with this current generation. I now teach a couple of classes for our POST and the difference is night and day. I feel as if I have to be part Dave Chappelle, part Steve Jobs and part Albert Einstein. These kids focus can come and go at any moment and when I am giving them a two day presentation sometimes it difficult to adjust on the fly to keep them engaged.

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    dlavergne@stcharlessheriff.org

    I was really surprised to see the similarities between my generation, gen-x, and millennials. I didn't realize how alike both generations are, with such few differences. What sticks with me the most is the statement by Stanley McChrystal, "Leaders can let you fail, but they won't let you be a failure." That's a great piece of advice.

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      Deputy Mitchell Gahler

      I agree, that statement is a great learning tool and will stick with me throughout the rest of my career. It's how we all learn from that failure, which results in positive change that makes us better.

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    dlevet@stcharlessheriff.org

    One of the key things i took away from this module is that yes there are different generations. Each generation has different characteristics, needs and wants. But not every person in that generation share those characteristics of their generation. So you need to know your people. You need to know each person characteristics not just the generalization of their generations characteristics.

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      Nicole Oakes

      This is very true. Sometimes we come across a baby boomer who is a whiz at computers or technology and who values personal relationships more than loyalty to the company. These are not characteristics of his generation but because of his experiences he has a different outlook than his generation. I think although these are guidelines it is important not to hold to them so tightly that we do not see the individual.

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    mmoscona@floodauthority.org

    As I was coming up in my career, I never gave much thought to the generational differences between me and my fellow officers. But looking back, I realize there were differences such as loyalty and work ethic. Now that I am a supervisor and have officers of different generations working for me, the differences are stark. This one module or similar training on supervising the different generations would be most helpful to new supervisors. As stated in the module there are somethings that are universal and must be adhered to no matter what. But, the way we as supervisors must relate to and "handle" our people must adapt to the personality of the individual officer based on his/ her's generational beliefs. It's definitely a balancing act that we must preform.

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    Jarvis Mayfield

    As much as I would like to say I love the hard work of the baby boomers, I would trade it for the millennial's or Gen X. Facts are the baby boomers they work hard and will do what is told to them without questions. "Like herding sheep". Millennial's on the other hand are impacted by trustworthy leaders. Gen X and Millennial's value relationships with co-workers, team building exercises and rather learn on the job than in a class. Millennial's and Gen X are able to hold several jobs at once very resourceful.

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    Nicole Oakes

    I have to agree with the presentation, it is enlightening to see that the differences are real and that we view things so differently; I am on the cusp of two generations and I can appreciate the differences of both of the generations. Many times on the job baby boomers have complained about gen Xers or millennials but now it all makes sense. And we, as parents, have been the reason for the way our Xers and Millennials have turned out as well as our historic events.

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      Lt. Joseph C. Chevis

      I've been having the same issues, I to have some baby boomers that have the same complaints. And yes we can take the blame for the way these younger generations are.

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    Seeing all the variations that come from each generation it is not wonder the state of affairs in our country right now. The key to understanding is listening. When we take each generation into account we must adjust our listening techniques to match their voices. We must also clear our prejudices of what each generation is or isn't capable of. Finding that sweet spot where generational gaps are not problematic should be the goal for all.

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    Captain Jessica Jo Troxclair

    History and leadership together have always intrigued me. As Lorraine Snyder spoke of all the different generations, I realized how much I enjoy those two subjects. I am a Gen Xer and realize certain characteristics I possess are a reflection of how I was raised. I always asked why growing up. I started my career being molded by Baby Boomers, I fit right in, and it was like following the direction of my parents. I immediately respected and followed all of my supervisor’s directions, just as I was taught in my family unit.

    Years have passed and now I am in a leadership role. I learned through the years that subordinates don’t fit strictly into each generational category. I also learned trying to keep all of the differences in order is taxing. I believe there is a lot to learn from each generation. Building effective communication skills by listening to your subordinates is a great key in keeping your team strong.

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    Lt. Marlon J Shuff

    The great thing about a team comprised of people from different generations is that each person will bring something different to the table. Each will have a different set of skills, perspectives, and ideas. Having diversification will only make the team better.

    In the lecture, Mrs. Snyder spoke about one of the Millenial Generation's characteristics, which is they were taught to ask questions and challenge traditional thought. I have experienced this first-hand as a supervisor or while conducting training for my agency. Sometimes, instead of just saying "do this," you better be prepared to explain the why behind it. This curiosity and eagerness to learn is a vital characteristic of those in this generation.

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    Lt. Richard Paul Oubre

    I am a Gex X law enforcement officer. When I came into law enforcement, 23 years ago, the majority of my supervisors were Baby boomers and a few of the Greatest generation. I found their leadership style was direct and straight forward. If policy or procedures were questioned, you would get statements like "its how it was always done," and if you don't like it leave," I never agreed with those kinds of statements and felt our leaders should have been more flexible. I don't fault the leaders, they were a product of their generations. I do believe our current leaders have to recognize this and be more adaptable.

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      Lt. Joseph Flavin

      I heard similar "it's how it was always done" statements as well. Lately, I have heard them less and less as our agency continues to change the way we do things. With new leadership has come change. Things are being done differently done now and it is a refreshing change of pace. When new changes are made, there is now clarification given on why. People are encouraged to look at new ways of doing things. I agree with you that our current leaders have to be more adaptable and we are slowly starting to see that.

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      Sergeant Chad Blanchette

      I agree with you. I think the generations that we deal with now require more communication and information about why something is occurring in lieu of just mandating change.

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    Lt. Joseph C. Chevis

    Generations

    As a Watch Commander in Corrections, I myself have dealt with many, if not all generations. Many of the new hires are of the ages 18 to 21 years old. These young officers perceive things differently than I did when I began my career. My job is an assignment in itself, it is very important that we as Supervisors get to know our personnel. We need to know their characteristics not just their generation’s characteristics. This module gives much needed observation on how to do just that.

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    Sergeant James Schueller

    I enjoy the discussion on the different characteristics of the generations, and specifically how it relates to the present and future of law enforcement. As a definite Generation X'er with 21 years in law enforcement, the change in culture with the introduction of millennials was at first very frustrating to me. I really noticed the shift as an instructor in the SKILLS program at the local college, and being asked 'why' for everything taught. But it did not take long to see that the questioning wasn't a challenge to authority or rank, but simply an extension of the way they were raised and taught. Asking 'why' has lead to the next generation not only understanding, but also offering up suggestions and ways to improve on tasks, practices, and duties. Bottom line is that we must adapt to the workforce changes and find ways to not only retain the employees, but also to incorporate their strengths into traditionally para-military structures.

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      James,
      I agree with you. I am a generation x. When I became a supervisor it took me a long time to understand the questioning of different policy and procedures form our newer officers. After some time in leadership I realized that you have to explain the reason why and that the why wasn't a question of authority, it was a legitimate question as to why for understanding. Now I just naturally provide the information as to why so their is no confusion.

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      I agree with James Sheriff Jahner. The importance of "Why" cannot go understated. When I was promoted in my agency, I focused on the why. I took every opportunity to explain the reason we were doing something. I learned this in the Army and it always stuck with me. I was astonished by the two different reactions I got from my squad and later my bureau. One group of officers would stop me and ask why was I spending so much time explaining everything, they were the older officers that understood the concept of quasi-military authority. The other group that approached me, mostly newer officers, thanked me for taking the time to expound on things. It wasn't until some of the more seasoned officers approached me later and indicated that they finally understood and appreciated my approach did I really think I was making a difference.

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      Ryan Manguson

      I agree. If we accept that the why questions are not a challenge to authority but wanting to better understand and possibly improve processes. They we will all be better off in the long run. Adaptation to learning and teaching styles is key.

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    The module on generations is definitely eye opening and is great information for understanding and supervising the different generations of workers. In the Cass County Sheriff's Office we have employees from generation X to Generation y. So this block definitely helps in understanding the differences between the generations and what motivates and retains employees. Growing up as a generation x, I definitely feel the differences between the two. What i have really noticed is that generation y individuals definitely change jobs regularly. We will have a generation y employee work for a couple of weeks and then say I guess this job is not for me and leave the next day. Being able to understand the reasons for that and how we can adjust the work environment to be more accommodating can definitely help us with retention.

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      Sergeant Kelly Lee

      Couldn't agree more with you Sheriff. We have the same generational gaps in employees in our office and it is a constant balance to keep everyone happy and motivated. We just recently hired 6 new deputies who are currently conducting in-house training. 5 of the 6 are generation Y and it is interesting to see how they fit the "description" perfectly. They have high use of media (never wanting their phone out of sight) ask lots of questions, still live at home and ask for more (extended) training,

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        Same here. The millennial deputies request training 5 times more frequently than gen x and they blow up our chat groups while the gen x usually put their phones on "do not disturb". Yet they get along great at work.

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    Deputy Mitchell Gahler

    This was a great module which defined generational differences in the workplace and the importance of knowing your personnel on a personal level no matter which age group. Looking back at the material explained, it is very unique to identify each generation and how the adjustment of management and leadership styles may occur with different generations. However, leaders must learn to adapt to each generation in order to help each individual succeed. Each generation has strengths and weaknesses that we can learn from and adapt to in order to succeed together as a whole.

    The quote from Stanley McChrystal stuck out to me the most in this module. "Leaders can let you fail, but yet not let you be a failure." This goes back to Abrashoff's, It's Your Ship. "It's okay to make your own decisions, even if the decisions were wrong. The more responsibility they were given, the more they learned." Allow mistakes as long as something was learned from them. Each generation will have a different unique way of doing things, but we can all learn from each other to be successful.

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      My comment is not of a generational issue but one about effective leadership. Mitch, I completely agree with your second paragraph, and Captain Abrashoff certainly outlined the same process for evaluation used in the Navy as General McCrystal described for the Army. It would be great if more law enforcement agencies were better at those evaluations of their peers, their future leaders and even their current ones. Guidance and confidence building through errors rather than knocking people down, or worse, keeping them down. I believe my agency does a very nice job with building up our people, but there is always room for improvement. I have also been a part of agencies in the past where competition drives are strong and other people's failures are only used as another's stepping stones.

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    Lt. Joseph Flavin

    Breaking down the different generations and the characteristics unique to each generation was very educational. I can see why an understanding of the different generations is vital to success as a leader. I like how this module tied into effective communication and how important that really is. Each generation has what makes them unique while also having similar traits on their view on leadership. As a new supervisor, I found early on that communication is key. I had a basic understanding of the different generations but this module provided me with a greater understanding of them. I will use what I learned in this module to become a more effective leader in my organization.

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      Cynthia Estrup

      I agree with you when you talk about early communication is key. I think, in part, with early communication is that we need to have an understanding of the different people under our command and how they best communicate. It has been my experience that one modality of communicating does not work with all people.

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      Maja Donohue

      I think you really make a good point. Communication is everything. If we don’t communicate well it is likely there will be misunderstandings. And the bottom line is, everyone wants to be heard and wants to contribute, they just have different ways of approaching things. It is our job to find a common language and make a team out of individuals and groups.

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    I found myself mesmerized by General McCrystal as he spoke about the need for leadership styles to adapt, particularly when he described an “inversion of expertise." I am, without a doubt, an X’er, but I also found myself having both some Boomer and Millennial tendencies. I am the youngest of seven siblings; some of my siblings were born in the Boomer era. I also was educated in a changing world where Millennials were being accommodated, as was I, for group think and being taught asking questions was not only acceptable, it was expected. Being in a leadership position today, I find challenges (some positive and some negative) in leading the younger generation. I enjoy being asked why thing are the way they are because it provides me the opportunity to not only stay fresh on processes, but I will ask myself the question in a different way; do things need to be this way or is there a better way? I find myself frustrated with what, to me, is a lack of commitment to the workplace when we cannot fill shifts, overtime or other special duty projects. However, my frustration is probably more a little bit of jealousy that the younger generation puts much more emphasis on life rather than work. Through all this, however, I have found and agree with the instructor in this module that, effective and assertive communication is the bridge that needs to be built to earn trust with the younger generation.

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      Sergeant Durand Ackman

      I also found myself with some traits of a Boomer and some of a Millennial. I attributed it to me be born near the end of the gen X time period yet I was always around adults throughout my youth so I know I picked up some of their ethics. I agree with you on the "why" question. So many things are done simply because that is the way we have always done them. We need to be better an taking a fresh look at things and re-evaluating how it is being done. I chuckled a bit when I read your comment about frustration with the younger generation's work ethic yet a bit of jealousy on their emphasis of life over work. I often find myself doing the same thing...

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      Very well written Captain! I found myself nodding in agreement as I was reading your post. My grandfather (born in 1933 and Korean War Vet), had a large influence on my upbringing and work ethic. There were times when I was told to do something because he said to, but more so than not, he took the time to explain how, why and the way he found was best to do it. He worked and supervised all ages of people through his profession and apparently found it was easier to get the most out of someone by setting the guidelines followed with the why. The older I get the more I try to emulate his style instead of the styles I picked up elsewhere.

      Thanks,
      Nathan

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    I really enjoyed this module. I have been to several academy classes on the topic but this presentation really hit on some key points. Several things stuck out for me. First, I never really realized how many Generational titles there are. The buzz is always about the "Boomer's", " "Generation X" and Millennial's". I thought the short video "4 Generations in the Workplace" hit on a key topic leaders sometimes forget. That being, when four different generations in the work place look at a problem, you can have four different possible answers. Harnessing this powerful organizational dynamic sometimes challenges traditional leaders but is embraced by transformational leaders. I also found it interesting that traditional leaders tend to rationalize their approach to dealing with generational employees by stereotype rather than thinking about the value that each employee brings to the organization. Additionally, I was surprised by the comment that generational differences in the work place may not be as bad as we think it is. We tend to look at the difference in generations in overarching terms and never really think that employees responses, regardless of age, may actually be more tied to the context of their education, where they are in their careers, family life or marriage. Here is where personally knowing your employees is critical. Lastly, I think the importance of the strategies for retaining officers and the concept of "Over Communication" cannot go understated. Successful leaders who communicate the "why", understand the importance of work-life balance, actively listen to employees, understand how to communicate across generations, will successfully integrate multi-generational organizations and be prepared for the future arrival of Generation Z.

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    Cynthia Estrup

    It is interesting to hear a lesson on how the different generations of police officers fundamentally differ on their perceptions. Typically, the baby boomers are going to have rank because they have been in law enforcement for the last 20 to 30 years. Their rank is going go be earned by putting in the time and having lived experiences. At times, we may be a bit more set in our ways, and have to realize the generation of police officers have different experiences then we do. For the every day functions of our job, the younger generation is not going to blindly follow. They are going to want to the know the why and may even question why we are doing things the way we are doing them. We have to realize this does not mean they are being disrespectful or insubordinate. We should welcome these conversations to stretch the way we think and do things. It is through these conversations that we will bridge the gap and earn the respect we sometimes think we deserve because we have rank.

    Although we may perceive the work ethic and priorities as being different than ours or what we experienced as we progressed through our career, we need to realize that different may not be bad.

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      Great observation. I can certainly see the different perspectives based on age group and generation. When I was a young officer we often did things "because the Sgt. said to". The younger officers (post internet) see things differently. While its sometimes challenging to have to explain why to officers all the time, it does make for a better product as the officer understand the big picture rather than just the task.

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      Eduardo Palomares

      I totally agree. From a Millennial standpoint, I respect a leader that takes the time to explain why when new protocols or procedures are established. I have posed that question to my supervisors multiple times and had the question posed to me. To my boss, my generational subordinates sometimes come across too inquisitive. It is normal. Even for me they are too inquisitive. There is nothing like a great respectful debate prompted by a why while keeping an open mind that people just want to know why.

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        Lieutenant Jennifer Hodgman

        Eduardo I agree with your statement about respectful debate prompted by "why". So many millennial's question why we do things the way they do. They are not complacent with the answer of "that's how we have always done it". By asking why we are being challenged to better understand and look at processes, which in turn improves our departments.

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    Kyle Phillips

    During this lecture I found myself pairing up characteristics and traits of those within my agency who fit into each generational category. I enjoyed learning about the different motivators and characteristics between the generations. This certainly does help me to understand the "why" behind the individual. It's apparent that we must evolve as leaders and be willing to be free of assumptions and implicate bias towards those of generational difference to become successful with keeping communication open and bettering the organization.

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      Eduardo Palomares

      I did the same thing. Each generation definitely has different motivators in the workplace. I agree with you we have to evolve and not assume things based a person’s generation. It is important for a leader to understand this.

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    Eduardo Palomares

    This lecture was very informative and provided insight on the different generations and how each individual generation operates in the workforce. I am Millennial but have a mix of work ethics and beliefs from all generations. It is important to understand how people learn and view leadership in the workplace. I thought about the different people l work with and reflected on their traits and work practices. As a leader it is important to be aware of generational biases to better understand and effectively communicate. All generations working together contribute to making law enforcement a diverse and enjoyable career. One of the takeaways from this module for me will be applying a different approach how l communicate, praise, encourage and even apply discipline. My agency had a big influx of Millennials in the last three years. l can relate how they feel about leadership and know we like the “why”. Explaining and beginning with the “why” has helped me communicate ideas more effectively. It is important not to generalize and not take things personal when questioned on the “why”. As leaders we must understand and be flexible in order to close generational gaps in the workplace.

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      Major Willie Stewart

      I totally agree with you on this topic. I think as leaders we are here to lead and taking the time to simply explain a task given to someone is why we are here. I think labeling employees by their generation adds to the the division at the work place, as I've seen before with Boomers and Millennials not really getting alone, and its out job to recognize the differences but to find ways to get everyone on the same page to complete tasks.

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    Major Willie Stewart

    I really enjoyed this lecture, in my current position I am dealing with several employees from each generation. I have found through dealing with all types of employees a leader can best lead once you have a relationship with each employee. I have found everyone is different even if they are classified as being from the same generation, the struggle is to take time to know each employee and what drives them both professionally and personally. The idea of just placing everyone in a generational group in very limiting as a leader, and prevents us as leaders from being open minded when dealing with employees.

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      Sgt. Ryan Lodermeier

      You make a strong point, its so easy for people to categorize someone based on which generation they were raised in. It ties right into the comments made towards the end of the module about reminded us not to stereotype someone based on their generational identity. I agree that building the relationship first is the best start.

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        Christopher Lowrie

        That's a great point Ryan. As police officers we know what it is like to be lumped all together in one box. The fact that there is disagreement where some generations end and other begin goes to show that not everyone fits a label. We need to treat each person as an individual and find out the best way to lead them.

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      Gregory Hutchins

      To take the post's point just a little further, one can recognize the workforce's multiple generations' value as a built-in research group. Multiple generations and their mindsets afford an organization with an excellent sounding board to receive multiple viewpoints on a project, policy, or idea. Too often, decision-makers are subject to groupthink and are not receptive to novel ways to handle challenges or the need to change.

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    Ryan Manguson

    This module on generational differences had a lot of good information. I have noticed in my own department the differences between baby boomers, Gen X, and Gen Y. Gen Y or Millennials really place a much higher value on the work/ife balance than those in previous generations. This become the most evident in filling "extra duty or part-time" work. The younger generation is less interested in working extra duty for extra cash. They are more driven to maintain a work/life balance that is more focused on there home/personal lives.

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    Sergeant Chad Blanchette

    General McChrystal’s spoke about “inversion expertise”. I think this is more relevant now with technology than ever before. Our younger staff bring a lot to the table in regards to being more dialed in with younger culture in the community and how they are communicating with one another. Having this knowledge assists them with not only connecting with the community but also investigating crimes that have occurred. This perspective was interesting to hear from a General.

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    Lieutenant Jennifer Hodgman

    I myself have been guilty of not fully understanding why Millennials don't have the same work ethic as I do. As a supervisor, there have been many times where I have been disappointed because the officers I supervise were not as committed to their work as I was, they didn't stay to finish projects or were not available for call backs. This difference has forced me to step back and re-examine some of my supervision practices. Perhaps it's the millennials who are doing it correctly and working towards that perfect work life balance!

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    Maja Donohue

    This module confirmed my belief that we have to treat all of our employees with respect and dignity, regardless of how much tenure they have. All employees want to be recognized, appreciated and supported and it is our job to foster a culture that promotes these values.
    I find it really interesting that the Boomer generation wants to be heard and recognized for their experience. To me, this seems like a perfect opportunity to pair them up as mentors with the Millennials. It’s a way to assimilate younger workers into the organizational culture and at the same time ensure that experience and wisdom is not lost when older personnel leave the workforce. We need to focus less on our differences and lean on each other’s strengths to form a cohesive team.

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      Robert Schei

      Well said Maja, I especially like the idea of pairing up different generations to serve as mentors. As leaders in our organizations I agree that we need to build cohesive units that focus on results.

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    Sgt. Ryan Lodermeier

    This module was a strong reminder that each generation has its own differences and ways to solve problems. Where law enforcement careers can last upwards of 30 years (sometimes more) departments are bound to have multiple different generational ideas and concepts. I think at one point or another we are guilty of saying some phrase related to, “that’s just their generation”. I suppose instead of noting the differences in each generation in a negative manner perhaps we all need to appreciate the different points of view we bring to the table.
    I appreciate the reminder at the end of the module that not all persons raised in a certain generation may fit that mold. By birth year I suppose I would fit into the millennial generation but find myself more associating my work ethic with other generational classifications.

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      Sergeant Paul Gronholz

      I agree Ryan, it's importanct to understand the differences in generations, but we still need to see people as individuals with specific skill sets. I don't like being clustered into one group so I also appreciated the reminder at the end of the module that no one fits perfectly into the generational mold.

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    Sergeant Durand Ackman

    This module has some good info in it about the different generations. I've always found in interesting the differences between members of different generations. The different work ethics, priorities, opinions on authorities, etc. shared in this training was very informative. What I really like was when there was some explanation as to "why" these characteristics formed for the generation. For example, gen X tend to fend for themselves and this ties back to them being "latch-key kids." I am to the point now where those hired are all younger than me but the generation before me is still well represented in the office. I found myself assigning names to the different characteristics the presenter was talking about... Training like this is great as it educates the leaders (us) and prepares them for some of the potential issues they may face with different generations they supervise.

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    Sergeant Paul Gronholz

    I appreciated the general overview of the difference in generational tendencies. I, for one though, do not appreciate being generalized into one group. I don't believe that most other people do either. Everyone is different, it's good to understand and identify the generational differences, but we still need to see people as individuals with different needs, motivations, goals, and aspirations. We as leaders need to take the time to get to know each Officer on a personal level in order to more effectively lead them.

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    Christopher Lowrie

    I view all the differences within our department as a leadership challenge. As a previous module taught us, the military is able to effectively lead multigenerational forces. Why does it work for the military while other private and public sectors struggle? It comes down to situational leadership and knowing how to lead different people.

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      Precisely why I think we have to teach this topic to leadership across the spectrum of companies. I think it starts with being more open-minded, lord knows I need that.

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    Samantha Reps

    Effective communication, regardless of the generation, is imperative. It's not always "what you said, it's how you said it" that staff are hanging onto lately. This lesson was a good reminder on how you may have to use a couple different approaches to be successful.

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      Jacqueline Dahms

      Agreed. I think some generations may be better at communicating effectively but often times I see personality (or lack of) shining through. As they went over in the lecture not everyone conforms to the characteristics of the generation.

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    Robert Schei

    As leaders we need to find ways to connect with our staff. We need to be more patient in general and meet people where they are. For example I have some baby boomers who feel the need to have one on one conversation where you recognize their work and explain why you are doing certain things. What is funny is that I have to do the very same thing with younger generations but they have different questions. It just takes time and understanding that we are all unique.

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      Sergeant Matt Wieland

      I agree with your words and especially like the last sentence. We can draw generalizations based on what generation someone is from, but at the end of the day we have to know our people on a personal level, and get to know them as individuals.

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    Sergeant Matt Wieland

    Understanding generational differences is important when learning to communicate with newer officers. I have met many in law enforcement that have the mentality that newer generations of cops should learn how to do things our way, just like we had to when we were the new guys. Understanding what motivates newer generations in law enforcement is important to effective communication. If millennial officers need more feedback at work, and want to be included in decision making, we should find ways to accommodate these needs. Retention of good cops is going to be more and more important going forward, and learning how to give good officers more job satisfaction will be best for our organizations.

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      Amen to your last sentence. We must find ways to retain but also recruit. Failure to adapt could be a huge factor here. If we find ways to motivate, build up, and encourage, what can that hurt?

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      Sgt. Shawn Wilson

      Training them to be leaders from day one with an agency creates ownership. Retention of good officers these days has proven to be extremely difficult. My agency currently brings in about 35-50 laterals a year from various departments in the area and when they come in for training, I ask them why they wanted to come here; the most common answer I receive is we pay more. The answer I am looking for is that we have a culture that is supportive and receptive creating a positive work environment. Creating this viewpoint requires change and the timeframe for this is dependent upon leaders within the organization.

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      Timothy Sandlin

      I agree. It is critical to understand what motivates an officer, who they are, where they come from, and get to know them generally. This is extremely helpful in effective communication with the new officer.

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      Sergeant Michael Prachel

      Great point about being flexible and learning to modify our leadership tactics if needed, based on the generations you work with. Millennials are already more likely to switch jobs frequently. If their expectations are too low, and don’t like how they are treated, odds are they will look elsewhere. We need to figure out how to motivate them to retain them. A constant revolving pool of new officers is not good for a department, and can be problematic.

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    Sergeant Kelly Lee

    Really enjoyed General Stanley McChrystal's outlook on the younger generations and the need to listen to them. Even though at times it's difficult to manage staff made up from multi-generations is a good thing around the office. Everyone brings their area of expertise to the table and although maybe different approaches are used the same outcome is achieved. One of the best quotes so far from all the learning modules came from this section with General McChrystal saying, "Leaders can let you fail, yet not let you be a failure."

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      I think it is very important to remember that all of the generations do bring something important to the table everyday that they come to work. Instead of always looking for the negative in the differences that the generations, it is important to look at the positive side of those differences. It is also important to focus on the similarities as well since those are something that don't have to be compared.

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      Thomas Martin

      I too appreciated the General’s words. When we allow everyone to bring their expertise to the table we end up with a better product. I agree with him in listing to the younger generation, but I also see the need in listing to our older generation. I can recall bringing volumes of information to a roundtable to assist on a big project. I learned that no matter how much information I brought on a subject, it would always be second to the wise old man in the corner (with his personal firsthand knowledge). We always seemed to make the issue much more complex than it really was and he would set us straight, eliminating countless hours of work.

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    There was an important reminder that I think we forget about leaders, understand why your people have questions. Seems all too easy to fall into a routine of delegation without explanation. Remember the reason they have questions may have been our failing to properly instruct.

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      Bou Gazley

      This is a great point. I tend to be one that asks questions and then afterwards, I think about how the leader perceived it. My intent is not to question their authority, but it may come across that way and it was interesting to learn in this session that is a generational thing. I would consider myself a Gen X'er, but I can also see some Millennial traits in me as well (even though I try to suppress those)...

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    Bou Gazley

    This session was very interesting because I could see the differences in those that I work with. I also learned that I am kind of a mix, but also was able to understand some of my own idiosyncrasies better. I enjoyed the TED talk by the General. He made many very good points about being a leader of younger generations. Some of the comments that really stuck with me was about you can fail, and not be a failure. I think that is a challenge for some generations. I know that I personally take failures hard and take them personally, so this comment really hit a point with me. Another one of his comments was "Leader isn’t good because they are right, they are good because they are willing to learn and to trust." He also said that learning to lead people who have more skill in new technology and techniques is challenging. This goes back to the last quote about being willing to learn and trust.

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      It is challenging when you feel dumb around some of the younger generation when it comes to tech. I consider myself pretty tech-savvy until I work closely with some millennials. We have to be "willing" to learn and to trust. That's a big pill for some to follow, probably more so in law enforcement. It's ok to admit we don't know something. In fact, I think it builds trust among the generations and team members.

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    Well, this was an interesting overview of generational differences within the workplace. I felt overwhelmed a bit at all the information being thrown out and I took a ton of notes. As a Gen X, I could appreciate what the speaker was talking about but I also realize that I am a part boomer and part millennial. As she indicated, we're not 100% any one stereotype.

    I wish this type of training could be available more for law enforcement. I see the frustration with the generations over time. When I started in 1997, I was working alongside some older cops who obviously didn't understand me at that time. I can now appreciate what they must have been experiencing from a 2021 standpoint. By learning more about the differences and continually trying to expand my/our knowledge in leadership, I think we can really work on closing any gaps that may exist in our organizations.

    The key points I picked up in this module was to assume people are bringing their best forward, not just challenging or trying to make you look bad. We need to listen and learn often. Encourage work/life balance. Over-communication is the rule in inter-generational organizations - people want to feel a part of something.

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      Andy Opperman

      I agree Andy, I can appreciate how some of the older cops felt when I was hired, but I also realized over time in my career that the way new cops were treated when I started was not good for business, you know the better seen and not heard mentality. There's something to be said about building trust in your employees to come to you with problems. I think communication between leaders and employees has improved over the last couple generations. I think the statement made in the module about over communication is a great point.

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    Andy Opperman

    I have always found the discussion of generational differences interesting. We teach our new sergeants a section on generational differences and I believe it’s an easy topic to generate discussion. I think many people are proud of the generation they are from but learn that they share common interests across the generations. I do believe as the module discusses we all grew up different and your parents influence can really trigger the traits you carry with you for most of your life. I'm from Generation X and can associate with having single parents, being on my own a lot as a kid and the importance of education, but I also feel I carry some of the traits of the Boomers, related to work ethic and respect for authority. A lot of that comes from my father’s work ethic and the military. My kids have been raised with technology but are also taught the importance of work ethic and drive, and that things are earned not given. I hope the influence my wife and I have on my kids breaks some of the stigma for them of being coddled or the participation generation. While it’s sometimes fun to talk about the difference in generations, I think many generations such as the millennials get a bad wrap or stereotype. I perceive that they want many of the same things the older generations want, but just go about it in a different way. One trait I have found intriguing is that while older generations tended to respect authority more, I also believe they tolerated bad bosses easier. There is no doubt the younger generation can approach their boss easier with problems. I think that General Mchrystal talked about some of that during his career and transition of leadership. The General knew his people needed a shared purpose, they needed a transparent leader and someone who was willing to listen.

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    Jacqueline Dahms

    This was an interesting topic. I have had generational training before but not to this extent. I have never heard of the Silent Generation. I like how there was not set formula to figure out each generation and that a lot can impact your behavior. As a Gen X myself, I find humor and frustration in some of my peers who can't seem to figure out technology. There are often the rightful comments of "Millenials" that seem to be true, but not for the reasons one would believe. In the end we all want to be happy.
    For me I hold so much value in those that have experience and those that have a fresh look at things.

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    Brad Strouf

    Generational differences have existed for, well forever it seems. The ability for leaders to understand and appreciate the differences will allow the leaders to provide the feedback and freedoms that each respective generation seeks. For a number of years now these differences have been formally recognized and it seems we are doing better and better at bridging the generational gaps.

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    As a millennial, I found this lesson very interesting. I have known there to always be generational conflicts. However, I wasn't in the role of a supervisor and didn't really worry about them all too much until the last couple of years. I consider myself an older millennial, and I'm currently supervising a "younger millennial". There are certainly a lot of challenges with that. He is a great worker that has a great personality. However, he definitely has then mentality while working of "I'll get to it, when I get to it". I want to get things done as soon as possible and he might take an entire shift or longer to accomplish a certain task. It's hard to question him about it if it isn't urgent, but it really does get frustrating. Most of my team shows up to work at least 10-15 minutes early every day, and he has no problem walking in the door a minute before, right on time, or even a minute or two late. He hasn't learned what time he needs to leave his house for work yet, where the rest of us accommodate for weather and anything else that might delay us. Leading by example often helps, but in this case, there isn't much that changes the way this guy does things. I truly believe that he was raised differently and in a different generation. He is definitely the outcast when it comes to a lot of things at work because of that.

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    Sgt. Shawn Wilson

    I was able to be present for a speech that Gen. McChrystal gave back in 2012 at a Yellow Ribbon Event and in that event the General also spoke about bottom up mentorship. The idea that we as senior leaders do not have the expertise that some in the younger generations possess. This is often true when it comes to technology and relating to those in younger generations. When faced with a room of people from different generations I have found through my experiences that creating a shared purpose with the focus being on mission accomplishment brings about a positive environment. The willingness to listen to employees from all backgrounds and seniority status creates ownership with the organization.

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    This module brought forward a lot of key items to look and listen for when working with different generations or age groups. Good information for new teams or being involved with a new group in terms of general characteristics. It all boils down to being an effective listener and knowing the people you work with. Everyone is different regardless of their generational classification. I was glad the module included a small section on ensuring the rules and policies weren't forgotten and that they were clearly conveyed. Most are minimal requirements and the rest can be fairly easily tailored to an individual or group.

    Someone commented in an earlier post about a very young employee not showing up on time or not getting in a hurry to work, regardless of the motivational efforts they made. I feel dealing with that situation (if the guidelines, the why and value of had already been explained), discipline would be more appropriate. At that point it doesn't seem as much of a generational misunderstanding as much as a problem employee when everyone else seems to be on the same page and you've pulled out all the stops. At that point, what would likely benefit the whole team the most? I feel there is a difference in having some freedom at work to get a project done versus leisurely doing what you want when you want (and I realize I should have made that a reply rather than a general post).

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    At the end of the day, it's our job as leaders to get the job done. Our bosses, don't really care how we do it. They just want it to get done. When it comes to leading employees from different generations, I (as a leader) have to find a way to get the job done. That means that I may have to change and adapt my leadership style to fit those that I'm leading. So much of this all falls back to listening to our people. Asking them what are their expectations and communicating what our expectations are.

    I liked how Gen McChrystal talked about inverse expertise. I see that all too frequently in law enforcement. Policy makers and command staffs are too far removed from the day-to-day operations. This causes decisions to be made that are less than ideal.

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    In our agency we have numerous different members of different generations. Being able to communicate effectively with the different generations, is very important. Where one generation you may be able to be more direct when communicating with them. Whereas another generation while communicating with them you may need to seek their input for the future outcome.

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    Timothy Sandlin

    The information in this module does a great job of helping to understand the variables that may affect generational differences. I have heard many times people simply attempt to explain away or disregard certain generations. This bias as it relates to lumping people into a generational group is the easy way to place blame, however, often times it is in no way the true answer to an issue. I agree that most of the time effective communication and understanding can resolve most issues no matter what generation the person is associated. It is more important to take into account all of the variables involved in the situation.

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      Matthew Menard

      You are right. We can not discount any one generation because like it or not, we all need to work together for the common goal of the organization. The more we can learn to work together and how the other group thinks, the more efficient we all will become.

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    Sergeant Michael Prachel

    A fascinating point made in the module regarding Millennials reiterated something I’ve seen plenty of during my career so far. That is, this generation is more likely to switch jobs frequently. When I first started with our department, the majority of the patrol staff were Baby Boomers. These officers made a career with the department, and the vast majority did not leave until retirement. Over the years, I have noticed that many Millennials shop around for a new department. Part of this is has to do with the availability of vacant law enforcement jobs, and they have the opportunity to look elsewhere. However, I believe this generation does see it as normal to look for the next best place to work. A characteristic also mentioned for them is they have expectations too great for the work place. This also may contribute to the frequency of switching jobs.

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      Ronald Smith

      Mr. Prachel
      I have one for you my department has had a young officer seemingly on a fast track, he made detective in less than two years, he promoted out of detective and became a patrol sergeant at the four-year mark in his career, he took a six-month leave of absence to try his hand in the oil fields but was welcomed back having only lost two spots in seniority. He was promoted to Lieutenant before he had seven years on the job. He was the night patrol lieutenant for four months before he stayed he had paid his dues and it was time for him to be from that position. He is still the junior lieutenant I will let you guess his age or generation.
      I have spent time as an SRO and the Recruiter. I see great possibilities from these young people but our profession doesn't have much room for flexible schedules. The electronic time clocks have taken away sergeants' ability to reward hard work through an hour here or there. We have hired over 80 people in the last four years, sounds great we are a 95 person department, and we average 16 down. Lots of people just can not handle the schedule, they never make it to the reward this job is.

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      Eric Sathers

      I agree that job-hopping is becoming more and more frequent. When I first joined by department 16 years ago, it seemed fairly rare for people to leave for other agencies. In recent years that is completely the opposite. With changes in policing due to recent unrest, I foresee younger officers not only hopping to different departments but hopping out of the profession altogether.

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    Gregory Hutchins

    The topic addressed the conflict the profession is struggling with but is consistently ignored by those responsible for addressing it. Recruitment and retention are immense challenges, with numerous studies addressing the specific challenges and potential mechanisms to avoid expanding the divide. Agencies within our jurisdiction face a considerable problem with recruiting, and it only gets worse when there is a general indifference to change by senior leaders. Through this lesson plan, one can see the intergenerational conflict driving this challenge—an inability to recognize that we are our own worst enemy. Placing and retaining personnel in critical positions such as this without the training to embrace a new way to manage the process will only continue to create the shortfalls experienced in the recruitment process.
    Once people are in the system, one must follow the simple, repetitive themes of the lesson. To continually communicate, embrace their desires to be included, have an abundance of work/life programs and mechanisms to enable flexibility in the workplace, sell the department's strengths, and our opportunities for advancement, all while expressing their value to the organization is critical.
    We have to fully understand, as senior leaders, that the needs of the next generation of leaders, the Y generation, expects attention and coddling (Synder, 2017, Section 8). A reluctance to accept this generation is the future workforce as almost asinine as the boomers and Generation X cannot work forever. As Generation Xers serves as the senior members of organizations' leadership for a few more years, the subordinate labor force of this profession is in Generation Y. Leaders need to address their needs and motivations to support meeting the needs of a changing society.

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    Ronald Smith

    As one of three Boomers in the department, I get a fresh look at the age or generational gap every time we hire someone. As a new officer, I was constantly annoyed at the lack of performance from the generation X or Millenials but I did notice if the work was fast-paced and it was the fun calls they did okay. Fun calls, we all know the ones we get to drive fast, make noise, and put on a light show. They did have a much better grasp of keyboarding than I ever did of typing. As ai moved up through the ranks I was and still am annoyed by the lack of loyalty from these young people, but that is my issue and I am working on that every day. I see the generational differences but I see tremendous strengths in these young ones and I do have a great hope they can do this job better than I did.

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    Matthew Menard

    I found this lecture to be spot on accurate to the values I see in different aged employees with my department. The younger employees very much value their time off and tend to not see themselves at life long employees if not given the proper motivation. Conversely, the older generation tends to stick around even if they hate their job or are making those around them unhappy. I found it interesting how different techniques based upon generational groups can be used to motivate and lead.

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      Marshall Carmouche

      Matthew, you are spot on absolutely correct about the younger (mid 20's for my agency) employees not seeing them selves as life long employees. The turn over rate in our department is high. We often find ourselves asking the question "how can we retain the younger employees?". I suppose this just isn't an issue with LE. Retention seems to be a constant battle.

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    Marshall Carmouche

    Each generation would consider theirs as "the greatest". Within the agency I am employed there are members ranging from the silent generation to generation Z. Within my division, we range from boomers to generation Z. I have to admit that the difference in ages and maturity is a challenge for me. I agree that, as discussed in the module, generational conflicts occur from assumptions. Yes, effective communication is key when dealing with different aged grouped employees.

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    Travis Linskens

    I enjoyed this lesson a lot. The generations discussed all have their different needs and abilities. This lesson has made it easier for me to understand why people perceive things differently and how generations of people are also motivated differently. Doing some self-reflecting on my leadership style, I've realized that my leadership style has been universal and hasn't adapted to the needs of the people entering the workforce. It's given me a different perspective and things to improve on.

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    Thomas Martin

    This class on Generations spoke volumes to my Gen X heart. It has helped me understand that my previous commanders were baby boomers and they avoided conflict. When a problem surfaced involving a staff member, it would be avoided and many times ignored. I placed myself in a bad light numerous times with these managers, because I spoke up, asked questions and demanded resolution to our problems. It was extremely difficult at times when staff saw a commander as the actual problem. I would speak with them in private, explaining how staff viewed their decisions and how their actions were making the issue worse. It always turned into a loyalty speech and how we needed to get our “stuff” together. The conversations typically ended with us needing to respect the command staff’s authority or go find work somewhere else. This training also reminded me to spend more time with my millennial staff members. I understand that I must listen to them, before I can properly lead them.

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    Paul Brignac III

    During this module I learned several interesting things regarding different generations. Several of the things that were taught caused me to realize that I may need to make some changes. In most areas that were mentioned, I realize that I need to evolve and be more considerate of different generations. However, some of the things mentioned, would present a challenge for me. During the lecture the statement was made that a certain group likes to be "coddled". I am not sure that I will ever agree to coddle someone. I believe I may have to find another approach.

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    Eric Sathers

    This module provides an interesting context to the many differences (and similarities) between generational cohorts. Soon, new information concerning Generation Z will need to be added as we are finding entering the workforce in greater and greater numbers, including law enforcement. As a late-stage Gen Xer, I have heard continuously throughout my career "damn Millennials". It has been so easy to blame them for anything new which older generations don't like. While there may be valid concerns over differences surrounding work ethic and loyalty, the fact is that this group is becoming (and may have already become) the largest in most departments. It is time to put in-fighting behind us and begin to embrace the differences in a more positive way. By leveraging the abilities of these younger generations (especially the upcoming Gen Z), we have the ability to thrust public safety forward to better match our communities.