During the “Staff Management and Human Resources” Small Business Management Seminar at Winter Institute 14 in Albuquerque, New Mexico, Dr. Robert DelCampo of the University of New Mexico will discuss the changing dynamics in today’s business environment, particularly around generational dynamics and an aging workforce.
The reality is that, for the first time in history, five generational groups are all working side-by-side, from the Silent Generation to baby boomers to Gen X to millennials — and now Gen Z. In this workshop, booksellers will learn strategies for managing people from different generations, in recognition of the fact that understanding their varying perspectives can be critical to fostering a productive work environment. Topics covered in this seminar will include the challenges of recruitment and retention as well as the dynamics involved in creating a diverse workforce representing multiple generations of employees.
Dr. DelCampo is the inaugural executive director of the University of New Mexico Innovation Academy and current interim dean of University College at the University of New Mexico. He has authored seven books and published or presented over 75 papers, and oversaw the Hispanic Leadership Development Program in collaboration with the Albuquerque Hispano Chamber of Commerce. DelCampo’s teaching expertise is in organizational behavior and human resource management, and his research focuses on the underrepresented members of the workforce, generational issues at work, work-family conflict, turnover, and psychological contracts.
DelCampo’s interactive seminar at Winter Institute, which still has a few slots open for booksellers, will feature hands-on activities and a chance for audience members to ask questions. The content was informed by DelCampo’s research into work trends across the bookselling industry and other segments of the retail industry, which showed the stumbling blocks that come with increasing age diversity within the workforce.
“For the first time in history, we have these five generations working together, because of longer life expectancies and because of people remaining in the workforce, so you have varying values and belief systems and all sorts of things that clash at work and become issues,” said DelCampo. “You’ve got the Silent Generation folks, baby boomers, Gen Xers, millennials, and now you have the Gen Z folks all in the same space, which has never been the case before. Usually, you have just three generational cohorts in the workforce at the same time.”
From a diversity perspective, these generational differences are actually similar to issues that people generally ascribe to race, ethnicity, and gender, but don’t associate with age.
As folks with different belief systems, needs, and values clash, said DelCampo, workers of one group can become resentful of other groups, “for sticking around too long, for having different work ethics or different values around how they approach work, for how they derive value from work, or for what retains them in the workforce. It’s really completely different animals when you’re talking about people of different generational groupings.”
DelCampo added that while older generations and the media tend to pick on millennials (the generation born from 1981 to 1996), stereotyping them as lazy or entitled, the truth is that, due to their sheer numbers, millennials will be shaping the workforce for the foreseeable future.
“It’s such a large group with unique needs, and with older people leaving the workforce now, this is really the powerbroker group that is going to determine the nature of work for the next 20 to 25 years,” said DelCampo.
Staff Management and Human Resources will take place on Tuesday, January 22, from 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. in the Nambé/Navajo Room, located in the Lower West section of the Albuquerque Convention Center. Pre-registration for the seminar is required at a cost of $40 per person, and attendees must already be attending Wi14. Booksellers can register here.
Winter Institute 14 is made possible by the general support of lead sponsor Ingram Content Group and from publishers large and small. See the full Winter Institute program here.