Facilitating age diversity in organizations – part II: managing perceptions and interactions

Guido Hertel (Department of Organizational and Business Psychology, University of Münster, Münster, Germany)
Béatrice I.J.M. Van der Heijden (Institute for Management Research, Radboud University Nijmegen, Nijmegen, The Netherlands, Open Universiteit in The Netherlands, Heerlen, The Netherlands and University of Twente, Enschede, The Netherlands)
Annet H. de Lange (Department of Human Resource Management, Radboud University Nijmegen, Nijmegen, The Netherlands)
Jürgen Deller (Institute for Strategic HR Management Research and Development (SMARD), Leuphana University Lüneburg, Lüneburg, Germany and Silver Workers Research Institute, SRH Hochschule Berlin, Berlin, Germany)

Journal of Managerial Psychology

ISSN: 0268-3946

Publication date: 4 November 2013

Abstract

Purpose

Due to demographic changes in most industrialized countries, the average age of working people is continuously increasing, and the workforce is becoming more age-diverse. This review, together with the earlier JMP Special Issue “Facilitating age diversity in organizations – part I: challenging popular misbeliefs”, aims to summarize new empirical research on age diversity in organizations, and on potential ways to support beneficial effects of age diversity in teams and organizations. The second part of the Special Issue focusses on managing mutual perceptions and interactions between different age groups.

Design/methodology/approach

A literature review is provided summarizing and discussing relevant empirical research on managing mutual perceptions and interactions between different age groups at work.

Findings

The summarized research revealed a number of challenges to benefit from age diversity in organizations, such as in-group favoritism, age norms about appropriate behavior of older workers, intentional and unintentional age discrimination, differences in communication styles, and difference in attitudes towards age diversity. At the same time, managerial strategies to address these challenges are developed.

Originality/value

Together with the first part of this Special Issue, this is one of the first reviews on ways to address the increasing age diversity in work organizations based on sound empirical research.

Keywords

Citation

Hertel, G., I.J.M. Van der Heijden, B., H. de Lange, A. and Deller, J. (2013), "Facilitating age diversity in organizations – part II: managing perceptions and interactions", Journal of Managerial Psychology, Vol. 28 No. 7/8, pp. 857-866. https://doi.org/10.1108/JMP-07-2013-0234

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Publisher

:

Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2013, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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