BRIDGING THE GENERATIONAL GAP
As millennials flood the workforce, companies are seeing a significant drop in employee engagement and it is reported that currently it is the lowest it has been in almost a decade. “Why?” you may be wondering. The reasons cited are that twenty-first century employees have shorter attention spans, consume information near real time, and most importantly, will not hesitate to leave a company if they are dissatisfied. In fact, 60% of millennials stay at a job for less than three years and replacing them costs companies billions of dollars annually.
Your organization needs to start looking closely at a plan to nurture, develop, and retain this generation of employees. They are becoming, and will be, our future leaders in business. Therefore, organizations must evolve in order to accommodate their DNA and to align them with the desired way of doing business.
This also raises another issue that stretches beyond retaining Gen Y. How is it possible that a company can thrive when there is a mix of generations in the workforce who do not fully appreciate each other and their uniqueness? Three generations work side-by-side in today’s corporate environment:
- Baby Boomers (1946–1964)
- Generation Xers (1965–1979)
- Generation Yers/Millennials (1980-2000)
We live in a world of here and now, “selfies”, social media, and information at your fingertips. Leading and inspiring a mixed generational workforce requires much more insight now than it ever has in the history of the human race. How do these generational gaps manifest themselves in the workplace?
- Each generation tends to have a different approach to hours of work
- They value recognition and rewards differently
- They have unique work styles
- They communicate differently and have preferred feedback preferences
- They balance their work and life activities in different ways
- They manage conflict their own way
- Increased self-awareness around how others may perceive them
- Deeper understanding of each generation’s needs and preferences
- Improved overall communication and proactive resolution of conflict and misunderstanding
- Provide insights on how you can more effectively retain, develop, and engage your diversified workforce
- Improved performance across metrics due to team buy-in and an increased sense of alignment among team members
- Enhanced employee engagement and reduced attrition
- Cultivate a culture of accountability and ownership at all levels in the organization
- Cohesive and collaborative thinking amongst teams and individuals