Trainers and coaches should be aware of generational traits

According to Darren Shirlaw, founder of coaching and business consultancy firm Shirlaws, there are generational traits that trainers and coaches should bear in mind.

Learning styles



  • Builders (born before 1946): Prefer classroom-style learning, like the trainer to be in control, and consider themselves thinkers.
  • Baby boomers (born 1946-64): Prefer round-table style learning, believe in co-operation, and consider themselves thinkers.
  • Generation X (born 1965-76): Prefer unstructured learning, like consensus, and are driven by feelings.
  • Generation Y (born 1977-97): Prefer unstructured learning, like to interact, and think they know it all.

Attitudes to technology



  • Builders: They’re ignorant of it.
  • Baby boomers: They’re aware of it.
  • Generation X: They’re comfortable with it.
  • Generation Y: They live and breathe it.

Attitudes to coaching



  • Builders: They’re ignorant of it.
  • Baby boomers: They’re aware of it.
  • Generation X: They’re comfortable with it.
  • Generation Y: They live and breathe it.

Loyalty to employer



  • Builders: They serve the boss.
  • Baby boomers: They work their way to the top.
  • Generation X: They look for a shortcut to the top.
  • Generation Y: Give me Saturday off or I quit.

Comments are closed.