Every generation is influenced by its period 's economic, political and social events. From the Great Depression to the civil rights and women 's movements to the advent of television and advanced computer technologies. Thus generational background/situation may also affect the way they work. The key is to be able to effectively address and take advantage of the differences in values and expectations of each generation in the workplace. The current work place consists of four different generations; The Baby Boomers (1946-1964) who are slowly retiring and existing the workforce, The Generation X (1965-1976), The Generation Y or millennia (1977-1997), and the Generation Z who are about to or are just entering the work force. Although these different generations tend to want similar things in a workplace their environment/background has shaped their character, values, and expectations (Hahn 2011).
Currently the Millennial generation comprises between an estimated 10-17% of the Controller’s Office, when defining a millennial as someone between the ages of 18 to 34 (Pynes, 2004, p. 28). In the chart below (Figure 1), you can see the breakdown of the office’s age groups. As the 60-65 year olds leave the workforce it will be important to recruit individuals within the younger generations to develop a visionary workplace
Older colleagues to this generation is the Y generation as lazy individuals who are more difficult to manage. This generation also has a reputation for leaving their organization of employment abruptly to seek new opportunities. Generation Y has been exposed to the world in a different way than previous generations, they are more racially and ethnically diverse and they are much more segmented as they have seen the rapid development of cable, the internet, etc.
The current generations in the workplace today are Traditionalists, Baby Boomers, Generation X, Millennials, and Generation Z. Each generation brings their own values and mindsets to the mix. Although genetics play a part in a person’s characteristics, the generation in which someone is born into also plays an integral part in shaping their mind, values, goals, and work ethics. People from the same generation share similar experiences, and this can influence how they think politically and socially.
Workspace demographics now span four generations. A twenty-something hired this year can expect to find that they working with colleagues who are older than they are by fifty or more years. The reason for this is primarily due to labor shortages for trained personnel in many industries. In addition, many older workers are now delaying retirement due for economic or other reasons. Many of the baby boomer generation can now be expected to delay retirement into their seventies. (Randstad USA)
Continuing on, Generation X (born between 1965 and 1980) are not overly loyal to their employer and tend to be skeptical. Brenner states, “the most difficult to work with…” (p.27) Finally, Generation Y (born between 1980 and 1994) may value their relationship with co-workers over their relationship with their company so are not especially loyal. Brenner states, “many Gen Yers experienced downsizing through their parents, in some cases this has created a lack of trust”. (p.
Gen X, Baby boomers, and Gen Y are the different generations who work side by side in today’s workplace. According to Ann Hewlett, the President for Work-Life Policy Gen Y and Baby Boomers generations are a large chunk of the workforce, around eighty million each. Whatever those generations value, they have the power to drive to get the results (Hewlett, Sherbin & Sumberg, 2009). Baby boomers and Gen Y have similarities in what they value and there motivates them in the workspace. They tend to share some attitudes and behaviors. At work, Baby Boomers and Gen Y are motivated by not only money and making a pay package. They both desire a bunch of other stuff in life. Along with strong title, recognition, and respect. They are drawn to crave
In Supervision Managing For Results (2013), the author establishes that the Generation Y whom I consider to be youngest “are often highly self-confident, achievement-oriented, internet savvy, upbeat, impatient, and tenacious. They often love to learn, are socially conscious, can multitask, like to network and socialize with others, desire meaningful work coupled with feedback and recognition, and enjoy flexibility and autonomy at work” (p.384). Furthermore, the older generation (Baby Boomers), “value personal growth and self-gratification, a comfortable life, the use of logic, teamwork and involvement, and their own health and wellness” (Newstrom, 2013, p. 384). Also, having a strong work ethic, drive to succeed, willingness to give it their best and time to achieve a goal are characteristics of the baby boomer
In a work environment everybody wants to climb the totem pole. For Millennials, they want to rise to leadership without working too hard for it. They are trying to reach the leadership positions as fast as they can and at times they are unprepared for the position they enter because they have not experienced enough along the way. Where Millennials are too fast to rise to leadership, people considered to be Generation X, who are known for their hard work ethic and experience are often complacent in the workplace. Though they gained their experience (unlike Millennials) by working their way up the chain of command and gradually paying their dues and though they also do not expect to be handed a higher position, like Millennials who feel entitled to higher positions in the workplace, they are also not as motivated as Millennials. (Bresman)
A leader’s emotional intelligence impacts his or her ability to effectively lead a diverse workforce by self-awareness, social skills and motivation (just to name a few). Baby boomers are protective and team oriented. Their outlook is very optimistic. With Gen X they are self-contained and would not stay with a company if they find that they are not moving u within the company. Finally with Gen Y, they are affluent when it comes to communicating with each other. They are polite and determined when it comes to success.
The third generation represented is often referred to as “Generation X.” Members of this group are born between 1965 and 1979. Kyles (2005) defines them as individualistic, disloyal, techno literate, and one of the most challenging groups to manage. This can be attributed to the fact that this group grew up in the rebellious years of the sixties and seventies. Marshall (2004) states, “The employer has to provide an opportunity to work and grow, or they are going to leave” (p. 18). This says a lot about the influence of culture on this generation.
Gen X was found to be more team oriented than the Boomers in studies conducted by Karp and Sirias (Arnold, 1998). Having fun on the job is meaningful to this group; which has created a leadership style that sets them apart from the older generations.
The world’s labor force primarily consists of three major generations: the “Baby Boomers,” “Generation X,” and “Generation Y.” The “Baby Boomers” were born during and after the 2nd World War (1940 to 1960). This generation has a legacy of expertise, “old-fashioned” autocratic management, and healthy productivity. “Boomers” are known to work hard, remain loyal to their employers, and receive promotions on the basis of hard work and high skill. Technology was rather limited (Hewitt and Ukpere, 2012).
GEN Y ( Also called as Millenials):Millennial have grown up with technology and are comfortable with change. They value skill development and enjoy the challenge of new opportunities. Millennial are able to multi task, they want the flexibility to work where and when they want so that they can pursue their outside interests.
Gen Y employees are usually less loyal towards their work and this might be the bone of contention between them and the older