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Bridging generation gap at millennial workplaces

By Stephanie Sutcliffe

A book highlighting communication challenges between two generations in the workplace has been published by two Bahraini businesswomen.

Written by Amal Kooheji (generation X) and Sajeda Al Asfoor (generation Y), the book Hear Us Out is a conversation with a millennial in the workplace.

Ms Kooheji told the GDN that the book was primarily aimed at the older generations such as generation X.

“I chose to write this with a millennial because I really wanted this to be a true conversation between two people,” said the 46-year-old Bahraini.

“It is a call for understanding that millennials have a different style.

“It doesn’t mean they are actually different, they are similar to us but they have alternative ways of doing things and different speeds and attention spans, therefore we have to learn what they want, and how they work, to get the best out of them.”

Written with the intention of encouraging both generations to listen and understand each other better, Ms Kooheji supports communication, debate and empathy in the workplace.

“I’m a big advocate of change and therefore a call for change is the main objective of this book,” she explained.

“The book takes you through the journey of a millennial through different stations of a workplace from the time they get recruited.

“(It shares) my co-writer’s experience of an induction, the training and development that happens inside the company, and the performance management that occurs in companies nowadays until a potential exit where she gets fed up, but gets a chance to tell her views to management.”

Each chapter begins with a thought bubble by Ms Kooheji and another by Ms Al Asfoor, before moving on to statistical data retrieved through desktop research, then a compromise section where the pair try to understand each other for a solution, and it concludes with tips.

Hear Us Out is inspired by Ms Kooheji’s search for the perfect leadership and management style, which she said she has had to have for the millennial workforce.

“I see a huge gap between the current management styles around me from my generation and my predecessors towards the millennial workforce these days,” she added.

“We’re not talking about only millennials but also generation Z who are coming into the workforce soon.

“So truly I think that was the main driver behind Hear Us Out because it’s a call for change.”

Hear Us Out is available in Words Bookstore Café and Jashanmal as well as all major online retailers including Amazon, Goodreads and Apple ebooks for $5.

It will also soon be available in Jashanmal in Kuwait and the UAE.

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