Becker’s Hospital Review has published a new piece from Jocelyn Stroupe entitled, “5 Ways to Design for an Intergenerational Healthcare Workforce.” The article starts by recognizing that more than 60% of healthcare employers are currently experiencing tension between employees from different generations and that this reality could negatively impact recruit/retain and a healthcare system’s ability to foster a happy workforce.
Fortunately, health systems can leverage design to tackle this challenge. Readers can find all five design strategies online – ranging from encouraging cross-generational partnerships, offering greater variety of workspaces, focusing on similarities across generations and co-creation – and one of the strategies is excerpted below.
Encourage cross-generational partnerships
Despite the contrasts between generations and how they work and interact with others, successful teaming models have emerged that intentionally partner individuals of differing generations, harnessing the strengths and limitations of each. In addition to formal partnership models, informal relationships can be created by designing spaces that naturally bring employees together, such as shared support zones, outdoor staff areas, cafes or gyms. These communal spaces have the inherent ability to spark conversation among employees and foster serendipitous interactions.