Mastering the Art of Generational Feedback: Insights from Breakthrough Coaching

In today’s chiropractic practices, fostering a harmonious and effective work environment is crucial. With four generations—Gen Z, Millennials, Gen X, and Boomers—making up the majority of the U.S. workforce, communication and behavioral norms vary widely. Understanding how to deliver critical feedback across these generational lines can enhance team cohesion and improve patient care.

Know Your Audience

Understanding generational expectations is the first step in effective communication. Feedback preferences vary significantly:

  • Boomers appreciate respect for their experience and expect formal processes.
  • Gen X values transparent, direct communication with a focus on autonomy.
  • Millennials prefer an inclusive approach, often leaning towards informal coaching or mentorship.
  • Gen Z seeks collaborative solutions and personal investment from their supervisors.

Adapting your feedback style to these preferences can make your message more impactful. As Megan Gerhardt, author of “Gentelligence: A Revolutionary Approach to Leading an Intergenerational Workforce,” suggests, think of it as traveling to a different culture. Be aware of the different norms and work harder to avoid misunderstandings.

Prepare Beforehand

Preparation is key. Plan your message, delivery method, and desired outcome. Utilize emotional intelligence to anticipate reactions and practice delivering feedback to individuals from different generations. This approach ensures your feedback is constructive and well-received.

Develop a Relationship

Building a supportive relationship before delivering critical feedback is essential. If feedback is only given when something goes wrong, it can be perceived more harshly than intended. Acknowledge the recipient’s experience, perspectives, and efforts to create a connection based on mutual respect. Setting expectations for feedback—such as regular one-on-ones—can also facilitate smoother communication.

Make It a Two-Way Street

Feedback should be a dialogue, not a monologue. Prepare to listen actively, validate the other person’s experience, and paraphrase to ensure understanding. If you’re receiving feedback, create opportunities to provide your own input in a non-threatening manner. This collaborative approach fosters respect, connection, and autonomy for all involved.

Don’t Make It Personal

When receiving feedback, it’s crucial to detach it from personal feelings and focus on the work. Take a moment to pause, breathe, and reflect before reacting. Asking clarifying questions can provide context and potentially change your perception of the feedback. As Giselle Kovary from Optimus SBR advises, consider feedback as an opportunity for growth, and maintain a mindset of continuous improvement.

Leave Room for Improvement

Both giving and receiving feedback are skills that can always be refined. Strive to make feedback specific, measurable, action-oriented, timely, and results-focused. Embracing these principles can help all generations improve their openness to feedback and enhance overall performance.


Navigating generational differences in feedback is not just about adjusting your approach—it’s about building a culture of understanding and continuous improvement. By knowing your audience, preparing effectively, building relationships, facilitating two-way communication, detaching from personal biases, and always leaving room for improvement, chiropractic practices can thrive in a multigenerational workforce.

For more insights on practice management and creating a cohesive work environment, stay tuned to Breakthrough Coaching’s blog. Let’s work together to elevate the standards of chiropractic care through effective communication and feedback.

At Breakthrough Coaching, we’re committed to helping chiropractors navigate the complexities of modern practice management. Contact us today to learn more about our programs and how we can support your journey to success.



As a leader in the Chiropractic profession, BTC has been extremely selective in forming its group of alliance partnerships. We encourage you to visit our partner's websites and to utilize their services and products. When you become a Member of Breakthrough Coaching you become part of a special "family" unlike any other in the Chiropractic Profession.

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