AGE GROUPS: Speaker to give seminar on working with other generations

Published 8:05 pm Monday, October 27, 2014

Emily Ballance

Emily Ballance

A seminar set for Thursday will give attendees a look at how to better relate to those of different generations and age groups.

Emily Ballance, a Licensed Professional Counselor and Certified Speaking Professional, will give the presentation, entitled “Understanding and Working with Different Ages and Generations” on Oct. 30, from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m., in the Building 8, room 828 of the college’s campus. The event, sponsored by the college’s Small Business Center, is free and open to the public.

Ballance said many people struggle to understand why people of different ages and generations think and act the way they do. Part of the reason is that people born at different times are influenced by the events, values, changes and struggles of a specific time period.

“The better we understand other people, the better our chances are of communicating effectively and connecting with them,” Ballance said.

In the seminar, Ballance will focus on four generations, which are now these ages: Millennials, 14 to 33; Generation-Xers, 34-49; Baby boomers, 50-68; and Traditionalists, 69-89.

“We’ll look at the key events that shaped their lives and the values that many adopted,” Ballance said. “We’ll also talk about some of the characteristics and struggles shared by certain age groups.”

Knowing the characteristics and struggles shared by certain age groups and understanding the needs of each group can help businesses improve customer service, boost employee morale, productivity and their bottom line, Ballance said. However, the information shared in the seminar will also be helpful to members of organizations, faith communities and nonprofits that serve diverse age groups, Ballance said.

One of the things Ballance enjoys most about this particular seminar is hearing people’s stories, especially those of the Traditionalists, she said. During the seminar, Ballance encourages discussion because of the learning experience achieved from hearing different people from different generations who have lived through different time periods.

“They can tell us first-hand what it was like for them at the time,” Ballance said. “That connects us to the time period and to the person in a very unique and personal way.”

Balance speaks on business-related topics at Small Business Centers throughout the North Carolina Community College System, she said. She also presents keynotes on positive humor and workshops on communication, leadership, networking, customer service and wellness at conferences, events and meetings across the country, she said. Balance has been awarded the Certified Speaking Professional designation, the highest earned designation awarded by the National Speakers Association. Women in the National Speakers Association who have earned this designation make up less than eight percent of its total membership, according to Ballance’s website.

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