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Business continuity is everybody’s business. While the principles and the planning may be better carried out by BC specialists, it’s the organisation as a whole that needs to apply them. However, a one-size-fits-all approach may not be effective when you’re trying to get the message across. It’s a fact that many organisations now have as many as four generations of employees. Each age group has its own characteristics, culture and way of doing things. As you work with colleagues to get BC in place and make it effective, knowing a little about how to ‘sell’ it to each group could help a lot.
The four generations concerned go by different names, but here are some of the more common ones.
- Traditionalists. Aged 70 and upwards (!), these employees continue to work and achieve, either through financial necessity or simply as a choice. Traditionalists are often hard-working, risk-averse and detail-oriented, with a focus on the long-term. ‘Sell’ BC to them as a well thought-out plan that keeps the organisation safe.
- Baby Boomers. With an age range between 50 and 70, they still have time to think about career progression. They also typically favour good management of relationships, involvement in decisions and team-working. They may therefore be more likely to ‘buy into’ your business continuity goals if you can define recommendations together.
- Generation-X. Somewhere between 35 and 50, and focused on results and work-life balance, while also demonstrating greater individualism. Head right for the benefits and keep the analysis (which you still need to do) in reserve. Mentioning the technology that drives BC actions and BC advantages for employees’ families may be good as well.
- Millennials (also known as Echo-Boomers and Generation-Y). Younger than 35, these employees are technology-aware with a desire for instant information and innovation. Business continuity that is presented as an opportunity to do better, not just as protection against doing worse, can be a smart way to get their attention and ‘buy-in’.
Will all your colleagues automatically fit into one of these categories? Possibly not – but perhaps these guidelines will help you better understand different points of view to make business continuity both attractive and accepted throughout your organisation.