Paolo Marinovich Professional Coaching

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Age diversity Eng


What benefits can a company get from “age diversity”, i.e. junior and senior members in its management team?

Establishing a clear boundary between “junior” and “senior” is difficult since these definitions are not just related to age. The old equations of junior meaning innovative and senior meaning traditional or expert are too generic for today’s complex business world. Specific competencies, experience and behaviours displayed in mutual interactions play a significant role in generating relative strength or weakness positions within the company. This graph aims at representing four typical – therefore somewhat extreme – situations, depending on the relative strength or weakness of junior and senior managers in the operational context of a company.

The red quadrant in the graph suggests that junior and senior managers in strong positions may give rise to severe conflicts within the company; at the same time, however, the age diversity in a management team can provide significant benefits, as long as the different generations are willing to undertake a constructive confrontation, recognizing and sharing their respective resources. By the way, this condition is valid for any type of diversity.

If the company mission is fully understood, if the strategy is clear and accepted, with no “hidden agendas”, if the commitment of everyone is real and consistent over time (in other words, if every member of the team, junior or senior, feels accountable to the other members and all members feel accountable for the collective result) then the integration of these resources can lead to persistent competitive advantages and to a stronger awareness of each individual as well as of the team.

Coaching the team as a whole - and the individuals as necessary – is a powerful practice to help and facilitate these growth processes.


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