Bridging the Caller Generation Gap
A few weeks ago, my son needed to contact a family friend for a school assignment. He told me that he had texted the interviewee several times with minimal response. After listening to his frustration, I finally asked if he’d called the friend. Unsurprisingly, he said, “No, he needs to get with the times.”
It was a not-so-serious reminder of something that dispatchers often learn the hard way: communication between generations is challenging. Exponential technological growth compounded by vast gaps in cultural upbringing have produced generations that, despite only a decade or so of separation, communicate in entirely different ways.
By attempting to understand the communication preferences of other generations, communication can become more straightforward and less frustrating. While a preference for texting or calling isn’t the only signifier of generational communication gaps, it is exemplary of how much a few years can drive a wedge into a conversation.
For 911 dispatchers, communication issues can be the difference between life and death for thousands of people over the course of a year. Identifying generations, understanding what makes them unique, and recognizing their preferred manner of communication is a crucial but under appreciated aspect of being a 911 dispatcher.
In this toolkit, I will walk you through:
- The six most recent generations;
- Their communication styles;
- How you can apply this knowledge immediately in your dispatch center.
Want to become a better, more informed dispatcher?
Download the free toolkit now!