Cam Marston

Speaker Cam Marston Generational issues keynote speaker

Cam Marston

Speaker Cam Marston Generational issues keynote speaker

Speaker: Cam Marston

Expert on Workplace and Marketplace Trends


  • Recruiting and Retention in Historic High Turnover
  • What’s Working: Workplace and Marketplace Trends
  • Five Generations In The Workplace
  • Life Stages
  • Selling Across the Generations
  • The Gen-Savvy Financial Advisor

Keynote speaker Cam Marston is the leading expert on the impact of generational characteristics and differences on the workplace and the marketplace. As an author, columnist, blogger, and lecturer, he imparts a clear understanding of how generational demographics are changing the landscape of business. Marston and his firm, Generational Insights, have provided research and consultation on generational issues to hundreds of companies and professional groups, ranging from small businesses to multinational corporations, as well as major professional associations, for over 15 years.

Speaker Cam Marston’s books, articles, columns, and blog describe and analyze the major generations of our time: Matures (born before 1946), Baby Boomers, (born 1946-64), Generation X (born 1965-79), and Millennials (born 1980-2000).  He explains how their generational characteristics and differences affect every aspect of business, including recruiting and retention, management and motivation, and sales and marketing.

His first book, Motivating The “What’s In It For Me?” Workforce (2005), explores the characteristics and motivations that each generation brings to the workforce and suggests management tactics applicable to any business setting. His next book, Generational Insights (2010) is a guide to the best practices in managing generational issues. Generational Selling Tactics That Work (2011) is the first book-length study of generational approaches to sales and marketing.

Marston’s expertise has also been featured in the Wall Street JournalThe Economist, the Chicago TribuneBusinessWeekFortuneMoney, and Forbes, as well as on Good Morning America and the BBC. He writes a monthly column for Business Alabama and InvestmentNews and has been a featured columnist in Agent’s Sales JournalPROFIT Magazine, and Multi-Housing News, among others. His blog at tracks the latest changes and developments in generational issues and demographics.

Recruiting and Retention in Historic High Turnover

High retention workplaces have become more and more rare as our new Covid-present world attempts to reenergize itself. Both job turnover and demand for workers is at historic and shocking levels. Businesses’ inability to find and keep workers, no matter the pay, perks, or seniority, is real.

The rare few workplaces that have not struggled to hire and retain all tend to have a few things in common:

  1. They have spent years intentionally building a culture designed to address employee needs both in and out of the workplace;
  2. Leaders have been groomed to help employees discover their own inner motivations to find purpose in their work;
  3. They recognize their culture as a strategic differentiator in a crowded and aggressive marketplace, and they protect it at all costs. When these characteristics are in place, the organization becomes a magnet for people eager to join a workplace where they can find fulfillment.

Inherent in the leader’s ability to build and protect the culture and motivate employees is an understanding of employees’ spoken and unspoken challenges. Trusted leaders are familiar with the trends shaping the workforce, from life stages to generational characteristics to current events. Today’s employee marketplace wants to know your plans to address the latest hot topics including mental health, remote workplaces, flexible hours, workplace safety, and diversity and inclusion.

A few innovative actions by forward-looking companies can result in immediate improvements in recruiting and retention. Nontraditional recruiting ideas include showing the employee marketplace your personal side, both as an organization and as leadership. Potential employees are also drawn in by a clear plan for their growth and development: show them what will they learn in the first six weeks, then six months, then a yearly plan. Who will be involved in their growth? When and how will they be involved?

In this timely and engaging presentation, you will learn:

  • Trends that shape what an employee expects and needs to flourish that you must be ready to address
  • How to show your company’s personal side publicly
  • Steps to becoming a motivator for your teams
  • How to design plans for your employees’ first days on the job and for longer term growth
  • How to form the groundwork for a strong workplace culture that is attractive to recruits of all generations and in which current employees thrive and never want to leave


What’s Working: Workplace and Marketplace Trends

Extraordinary turnover. Mental health challenges leading to mental health awareness. Diversity and inclusion priorities. Supply chain nightmares. Vaccine controversy. Political divisions. Trembling stock market. Inflation forecasts. Partridge in a pear tree. Goodness.

The trends shaping today’s workplace and marketplace are, each on their own, worthy of a news cycle headline. But in today’s upheaval, they’re happening simultaneously. Which of the trends making headlines will impact the workplace and marketplace most? Which ones do employers, managers, sales leaders, and human resources executives need to keep an eye on? I have opinions on that…

In 2018, I began an old-school, interview-style, terrestrial radio show called What’s Working with Cam Marston. My goal? To interview professionals from a spectrum of industries across the country to help my listeners better understand the trends shaping their workplace, the workforce, and the marketplace. Today, about 200 broadcast episodes later (and also available as a podcast), I share the most relevant trends that I’ve uncovered in customized presentations designed to arm each audience with the skills and information needed to get ahead in their industry.

Notable trends include:

  • Mental health awareness in the workplace
  • Management and retention in flexible and remote workplaces
  • Ensuring workplace safety
  • Diversity and Inclusion deluge (and potential backlash)
  • The growing importance of mission for employees and customers
  • A future of low performing males throughout society
  • The relevance of safety and convenience to shoppers

This presentation delivers thought-provoking content curated for your specific industry. I gather best practices gained from a continuously growing body of interviews, as well as from proprietary research, to equip each audience with a list of the most important trends, their potential impact, and guidelines on how to address them.


Five Generations In The Workplace

For the first time in history, five distinct generations – Matures, Boomers, Xers, Millennials and Gen Z – are employed side by side in the workplace. With differing values and seemingly incompatible views on how the workplace should function, these generations have stirred conflict in the business world. Witness the turnover, the lack of engagement, and management incomprehension and frustration. Knowledge of and effective management of this generational divide is vital to longevity and success. In fact, it is one of the most relevant and important demands your company can make of its leaders.

In this engaging presentation, Cam Marston teaches how each generation developed its core values, how these values manifest in the workplace daily as workplace preferences, and why they can all not only operate alongside each other but do so with extraordinary success. This program provides the detailed insight, concrete examples, and specific approaches to help frustrated managers build the personal connections needed to boost employee performance and retention. Audiences will learn that success results from increased generational awareness and incremental change.

Participants will walk away from this experience knowing:

  • Common generational characteristics and core values
  • How each generation defines success
  • Specific leadership needs of each generation
  • The new definition of company loyalty
  • Fresh guidelines for team building

Amongst the generations, the only common ground is the intensity with which each generation holds fast to its value systems and preferences. Understanding and respecting these value systems and preferences are critical to bringing out the best in every employee.


Life Stages

Life has chapters. As we progress through life’s chapters, new priorities surface and old priorities fade. As each chapter closes and a new one begins, the priorities shuffle yet again. The chapters and shuffling start at birth and end when we end.

Many of the most important and volatile chapters of our lives occur during our working years. Getting married. Giving birth. Aging parents. Empty nesting. Commonly called “life stages,” these chapters are common amongst our society. Within the workplace there are chapters, too. Onboarding as a new hire. Learning to lead. Learning to take direction. Learning to manage. Mentoring or being mentored. Grooming a successor. Identifying and honing a special skill set. Retirement prep.

Together, these personal and workplace life stages add complexity to each of our lives. Our workplace peers and colleagues are going through them, too, so it’s worthwhile to identify the particular challenges that each life stage brings to better understand our co-workers and to support them where we can. It’s another element of diversity – different life stages all around us – and inclusion – welcoming each person and the challenges and celebrations their life stage brings.

This presentation highlights the life stages most common in our working years, putting a focus on what people are learning, are experiencing, and are celebrating. It mixes in generational terminology to provide an additional layer of understanding to the life stage participant’s outlook. Finally, the presentation suggests what type of interpersonal support we can provide our peers and colleagues as they move through each life stage.

You’ll learn:

  • The personal and workplace life stages most commonly experienced in people’s working years and the stresses each life stage puts on participants
  • That organizations that have purposely developed and groomed their workplace culture inherently acknowledge and make room for their employees’ life stages challenges
  • Where, when, and why people learn more from failures in their later life stages vs learning from wins in their earlier life stages
  • How to engage your colleagues in different life stages: what you can say to them and do for them that will result in a more harmonious and productive workplace
  • What life stage you may be in and how this may be shaping your approach to your work and your colleagues


Selling Across the Generations

The first rule of selling remains steadfast: Know your customer. With five distinct generations playing active roles in the buying decisions of companies worldwide, that tenet is increasingly difficult to fulfill. It is no longer enough to be personable with your customer and knowledgeable about your product.

Changing dynamics require changing strategies.

To succeed in today’s business climate, you need to approach each buyer with an informed generational perspective — recognizing the underlying biases, values and expectations that pave the way to “Yes.” These biases, values, and expectations impact everything from how you introduce yourself, how you communicate (both frequency of communication and channels of communication), how you develop and maintain your online impression, to how you ask for the sale. Once you understand the depths of sales biases in each generation, you’ll then begin to realize the opportunities for making new, deep, and lasting connections with your customers. In this presentation, Cam Marston shows you how to create fast and genuine relationships with new customers, sell to your customer’s expectations, build trust between generations, and avoid communication pitfalls.

Throughout the presentation you will learn how companies are effectively engaging generational sales techniques to appeal to the unique decision-making traits of each generation and how you can develop a solid sales process based on generational biases and business preferences.

Based on the client’s request or customer analysis, Cam can focus the presentation on all five generations or the one or two most applicable to the specific audience.

Participants will learn:

  • The core differences in the way each generation has learned to interact with the world around them
  • How each generation searches for suppliers who will reflect their generational preferences back to them
  • Their own generational preferences and biases and how, by blindly following them, they may ruin sales opportunities
  • Guidelines for selling to the different generations in today’s marketplace
  • How to identify people who do not fit into their generational profile, why they may not fit, and how to proceed with them


The Gen-Savvy Financial Advisor

For decades, financial services professionals have focused on demographic groups that are now moving into and past retirement. The Matures (born 1945 and prior) and the Baby Boomers (born 1946 – 1964) are the generations that the financial services industry grew up with and their client relationships were defined by traditional business models. Now, new generations, Generation X and, especially, Millennials, who have different economic and cultural experiences are moving into age ranges that make them prime markets for investments, retirement planning, insurance, and other financial products.

The next generation of financial services client has arrived. They will not tolerate being treated the same way their parents were treated. Learn what they want in this exciting and impactful presentation.

You’ll learn:

  • The attitudes and expectations of the upcoming generations and what they expect from financial services providers
  • How each generation values different types of information
  • What each generation’s definition of “expert” is and how they apply it to financial professionals
  • How the Covid economy altered the way some generations perceive money and financial planning
  • What the younger generations want financial professionals to teach them
  • Each generation’s preferred communication preferences
  • Which sales tools to use, and how to use them effectively


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