Decades of Change: Breaking Generational Stigmas

Thursday, May 9, 2019 5:00 pm
Kimpton Hotel Allegro
171 W Randolph St

For decades, incoming generations have been stigmatized in the workforce. Millennials have received particularly harsh criticism for disrupting industries, obsessing over technology and having a poor work ethic. Soon Millennials will be old news and Generation Z will become the new target.

Each generation has new advantages and challenges. The world is changing faster than ever before, and that can cause discomfort. This panel will discuss how we can engage and attract the various generations that make up the modern market and workforce. We will ask questions such as:

  • What motivates different generations in the workplace?
  • How can we respect our similarities and differences?
  • What can we do to bridge the communication gap?
  • How can an organization attract and embrace A-player Millennials?

Meet the Panel:

Tom Gimbel is the Founder & CEO of the LaSalle Network. At the age of 26, he decided to start his own company by hiring two employees and beginning to build his vision. Today, the LaSalle Network has more than 150 employees across the United States and continues to grow every year. Tom has been named to the Chicagoland Entrepreneur Hall of Fame and Crain’s “40 Under 40."


Mary Burns is Principal of AdviseU and an MBA Career Coach at the Kellogg School of Management. Mary advises Millennials on strategic career planning, professional development opportunities and working through challenging professional situations. In 2007, Mary self-published, Entitled to What? A Reality Check for the Generation Entering Corporate America.  The book is targeted to college students and young professionals as well as the companies who employ them. It provides 20-somethings with awareness about practical business insights and soft skill development in managing across a multi-generational work place.

Chris Ruder is the CEO of Spikeball, with a mission "to bring people together through competition and fun." Chris founded the company in 2008 and since then has grown it to serve more than 4 million players around the world and 24 employees across the country.


This panel is moderated by Bruce Leech, the Executive Director of the Coleman Entrepreneurship Center at DePaul University. He leads the effort to help students and alumni develop their entrepreneurial skills and connect them with the vibrant ecosystem in Chicago. He has worked closely with faculty to develop curriculum and recently hosted a national entrepreneurship conference attended by over 250 universities. In 2010, Leech was inducted into the Chicago Area Entrepreneurship Hall of Fame and has received recognition such as the Broad College of Business Distinguished Alumni Award, 2014 Alumni Service Award from Michigan State and the Entrepreneur of the Year Award at DePaul University in 2009.

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