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Generational leadership – How to manage five different generations in the workforce

  • Florian Kunze
  • Stephan A. Boehm
  • Heike Bruch
Chapter

Abstract

The successful management of demographic change in German companies will mostly depend on their executives’ leadership capabilities. Based on the implicit leadership theory of effective leader-subordinate relationships, the perceived leadership behaviour must match individual subordinates’ leadership prototypes. As research in sociology and social psychology indicates, these leadership prototypes – consisting of employees' work values and preferences – are influenced by generational experiences as well as by individual employees’ age. Building on these arguments, this chapter tries to develop different leadership styles for the five generations currently present in the German workforce: The Post-War Generation, the Economic-Boom Generation, the Baby-Boom Generation, the Golf Generation, and the Internet Generation. Such adaptive and generation-specific leadership should help spur high levels of work motivation, organisational commitment, and hence lead to top performance by every generation and age group within the company.

Keywords

Organisational Commitment Leadership Style Baby Boomer Leadership Behaviour Individual Employee 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Florian Kunze
    • 1
  • Stephan A. Boehm
    • 2
  • Heike Bruch
    • 1
  1. 1.Institute for Leadership and Human Resources ManagementUniversity of St. GallenSt. GallenSwitzerland
  2. 2.University of St. GallenSt. GallenSwitzerland

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