Taking Aim at “Ok Boomer”

by Kelly O'Neill 02/14/2020

Recently, just two words have been causing trouble in offices across the country. “Ok Boomer,” the latest universal response to just about anything – and usually coupled with an eye roll –  has some sociologists  declaring total “generational warfare.”

Wait a second – what? If you’re thinking “that can’t be right,” it’s because it’s not.

Addison Group recently surveyed over 1,000 full and part-time employees, revealing that, contrary to what popular media might lead you to believe, there truly is no evidence to support this “generational warfare according to our report, Age is Just a Number: The Truth Behind Generational Stereotypes at Work., over 90% of employees are satisfied with the diversity of age ranges in their workplace.

The data doesn’t have to speak for itself though. Our very own People Strategy Associate Tyler Cahill connected with Digital Journal and broke down the “Ok Boomer” phenomenon and just some of the interesting takeaways from our study. We’ve highlighted a few of them for you here.

Digital Journal (DJ): What is the current variation in terms of workplace demographics?

Tyler Cahill:Workplace demographics vary widely from industry to industry, but Millennials currently represent the largest labor market share across any single generation.

However, age will likely not be the defining factor when it comes to workplace demographics in the future. We’ll likely see more diversity and, as students stay in school longer, higher education levels begin to be the focus of the workplace demographic conversation.

DJ: How important is a diverse workplace?

Cahill: Diversity in the workplace is important for a variety of reasons, but especially when it comes to decision making. Heterogeneous groups tend to provide multiple perspectives, allowing for a more thorough discussion on a problem.

However, there is another word that usually follows diversity that should not be overlooked – inclusivity. A company cannot just set an arbitrary diversity goal and hope for better results. If your environment does not encourage different points of view, then it is less likely a diverse workforce will be able to thrive.

DJ: Should employers be doing more to encourage boomers?

Cahill: Employers should be doing all they can to show that company initiatives benefit all employees rather than just one generation of people. This may mean clearly communicating changes in processes or benefits so employees know it’s for the good of a whole company, not just one group.

You can check out the rest of Tyler’s Ok Boomer discussion with Digital Journal here. For more insights on generational stereotypes at work and how to combat them, download our guide.

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