top of page
  • Writer's pictureMichael Williams

5 Generations in the Workplace United: How to lead success with a multi-generational team

Wrexam FC team celebrating

With 5 generations now coexisting in the workplace (Traditionalists, Baby Boomers, Gen X,  Millennials & Gen Z),  business leaders are now presented with greater challenges and opportunities than ever before. So, how can we ensure we use this generational melting pot to our advantage as leaders? 

Tackling the challenges and scoring with the opportunities

Today, I am diving into the world of sports to help demonstrate how a balanced workforce will fuel your success in business

As we near the end of another English football season, there’ll be both winners and losers. Clubs will be analysing how well they have done both on and off the field, on the balance sheet and where they have finished in the league table. Like every other business they will be looking at how well they have used their assets to achieve their strategic objectives.

We all know that a thriving Football Club isn’t just successful because of its moves on the pitch, but as a successful business venture as well. Today’s dream team doesn't just consist of young, hotshot players, it also leverages the experience and skills of five generations working in harmony.

Leicester City FC team training 2024

Let’s take a generational look at the structure of the club/business:

  • Traditionalists, (1928-1945): These seasoned veterans, with their wealth of experience and knowledge of the club's history, will provide invaluable guidance to the board, the management team, backroom team, and players.

  • Baby Boomers, (1946-1964) and Gen X, (1965-1980): This group provide a blend of leadership, strategic thinking, and coaching skills, honed over decades in the game.

  • Millennials, (1981-1996 and Gen Z, 1997-2012): Millennials bring their tech-savviness and collaborative spirit, while Gen Z injects fresh ideas, digital fluency, and a hunger to prove themselves into the managing, coaching and playing at the club. 

What are the strengths from each generation and how can you, as their business leader, ensure you optimise the benefits? 

Daniel Farke, Leeds United FC manager 2024 giving some advice to younger player

Strengths & Management:

  • Traditionalists: Respect their experience, leverage their historical knowledge.

  • Baby Boomers: Value their leadership, utilise their strategic thinking.

  • Gen X: Appreciate their self-reliance, utilise their problem-solving skills.

  • Millennials: Embrace their tech skills, foster their collaborative spirit.

  • Gen Z: Encourage their innovation, provide mentorship for their development.

The Synergy of Generations

This multi-generational team isn't just about filling positions, it’s about a powerful synergy:

  • Experience meets fresh ideas: Traditionalists guide with wisdom, while Gen Z pushes boundaries.

  • Tech meets tradition: Millennials integrate technology, while Baby Boomers ensure stability.

  • Mentorship flourishes: Senior leaders guide younger generations, while younger generations keep the club future-proofed.

Bringing the Lessons from the Pitch to the Boardroom

Arsenal FC training 2024

These principles translate beautifully to any business:

  1. Embrace a Multigenerational Workforce: It's not a burden, but a strength.

  2. Understand Generational Differences: Tailor communication and leadership styles for each generation.

  3. Foster Open Communication: From face-to-face meetings to digital platforms, cater to diverse preferences.

  4. Invest in Mutual Mentorship: Create programmes where everyone learns from each other.

  5. Embrace Technology: Bridge the digital divide, empower all generations.

  6. Promote Collaboration: Form cross-generational teams to foster understanding.

  7. Develop Leaders Across Generations: Offer training that caters to diverse learning styles.

  8. Create Flexible Work Environments: Acknowledge different work-life needs.

  9. Recognise and Leverage Experience: Senior leaders are a treasure trove of knowledge.

  10. Lead by Example in Diversity & Inclusion: Create a leadership team that reflects your workforce.

  11. Unite Around Common Goals: Find a mission statement that resonates with everyone.

  12. Embrace Continuous Learning: Encourage ongoing skill development at all levels.

  13. Offer Career Growth Opportunities: Invest in the future of your leaders.

Leicester City FC celebrating 2015/16 Championship win

To sum everything up:

In today's workplace, the key to success isn't about erasing generational differences. It's about celebrating them, fostering collaboration, and creating an environment where every generation can contribute their best. By expertly harnessing the unique strengths of a multi-generational workforce, you can ensure your business is not only top of the table, but flourishes for many years to come.  


Figure 8 in red
Hey there.
Let's talk! 

Don't like forms?
If you’d prefer to email us directly, send a message to

Speak to one of our friendly team on

Get in touch

bottom of page