Closing the workforce generation gap

Gen Ys’ views of Baby Boomers in the workplace, and vice versa, include some of the following generalisations:

What Gen Ys think about Boomers

They are inefficient.
They don’t respect me.
They assume that I’m interested in the career path that they have chosen for me.
They are obsessed with face time and have too many meetings.
They don’t give me the latest technology and they don’t use technology effectively.

What Baby Boomers think of Gen Ys

Gen Y’s don’t have loyalty to the company.
They have poor communication skills.
They are impatient and don’t respect authority.
They spend too much time online.
Their experience and backgrounds are vastly different than that of Boomer.
Source: Human Capital White Paper

The general consensus among disgruntled Baby Boomer managers is that Generation Y employees are impatient, demanding and outspoken, have little work ethic and lack commitment, yet expect to climb the corporate ladder with alarming speed. However, Gen-Y’s ease with technology and their creativity are skills that should be prized within an organisation. Juggling the different generations in one workplace can be challenge but it is important for managers to recognise the value of the varied skills and fresh approach that this new generation of workers brings.

For more comprehensive overview of the challenges and opportunities posed by the Generation Y workforce check out the February issue of NZ Management magazine.




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