Play Monopoly with Millennials and Gen Z

As a Generation X'er, how do you build a solid working relationship with colleagues from Generation Y (Millennials) and Generation Z? In this blog, Organizational Psychologist Dirk van Uffelen gives some tips based on Robert Kiyosaki's book 'Rich dad, poor dad'.

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In the roles of organizational psychologist, trainer, coach, entrepreneur and member of Generation X, I have worked continuously with Millennials in business over the past 20 years and increasingly with entrepreneurs from Generation Z over the past two years.

During this collaboration, I have learned that the differences are greater than I initially thought but that they can be bridged through candid dialogue on a wide range of topics. 
For example, I discovered that for Millennials and Generation Z, the quality of the dialogue from their perspective is more important for building a good relationship than concrete returns in terms of results are. 

In this blog, based on some lessons from the book "Rich Dad, Poor Dad" and on my personal experiences that are in line with it, I want to give you some suggestions for having a good conversation with colleagues from other generations. 

Robert Kiyosaki wrote this book back in 1997 along with Sharon Lechter. In their book, they argued for the importance of financial awareness and financial intelligence and concluded that the mainstream education system does not pay enough attention to it. And that rich fathers teach different lessons to their children than poor fathers do. In the video above, Robert Kiyosaki explains this and talks about how, among other things, he was advised never to accept a paycheck. 

I would like to share the following tips:

  • Have a conversation with your colleague (from a different generation) about what money means to him/her personally. In my experience, different generations have different answers and understanding each other's world in this area can strengthen the connection between them. Discuss the following stereotypes:
      • Generation X: money means status and security. Salary level of revenue/ profit of your business as a rating for how good you are at your job/entrepreneurship. And earning money to save for later as protection from poverty in lesser/worse times. Being able to retire early.
      • Millennials: money is only a means to create freedom. Preferably a passive income that allows you to start each day with an empty agenda and no obligations. Living like a pensionado right now instead of later. 
  • Strike up a conversation about why the Rich Dad would only share his lessons about money on the condition that he would never pay Robert: "the moment I pay you, you think like an employee. That's the trap. Entrepreneurs work for free. You never want a paycheck".
      • What do you both think about that? Is this also applicable for millennials and generation Z in paid employment? Personally, I would answer in the affirmative to the last question. I believe and have experienced that you can learn faster if you are willing to work for free (in addition to your daily tasks) for leaders, professionals and entrepreneurs with a wealth of knowledge and experience. You then get "paid" in learning experiences
  • Literally play Monopoly together and observe each other's behavior. Reflect after each game on the chosen strategies and thoughts and feelings about winning and losing. Get to know each other better in this area. 

Good luck with applying the tips and I would love it if you shared your experiences here in our community. 

Dirk Van Uffelen

Guest Editor, Generation Magnets

Studied Organisational Psychology & Sports Psychology and focused the last 20+ years on development and guidance of Cororate Management Traineeships and Young Professional Programs. Currently writing 'The Quantum Millennial Guide, the Bionic Way from Agile to Antifragile'. Passionate about traveling, learning languages, martial arts, CrossFit and spending time with his family.

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