My father worked for one company all his life. It didn’t even occur to him that a better job may have been available next door. His mindset was dictated by loyalty and the need for security. He belonged to the generation of Veterans.
Today new people joining the workforce are driven by very different variables. Their ability to bounce ideas off the boss and be recognized for them tend to rank high in their priority list. They long for a flat structure where senior people are accessible to them and they are part of a team that counts.
New generations have entrepreneurial minds. In many ways the risk of doing something they’ve never done before challenges and excites them. If they fail so what? I can try again. This departs from the way my father thought. He was the breadwinner of the family and was risk averse. He didn’t have many choices.
Most young people today sleep at odd times, they are almost nocturnal. Their cicadic rhythms are different to the older generations. They work when others are asleep. This may not be such a bad thing as there is a point to say that the silence of the night brings with it creativity and answers that may not be available in the chaotic environment of the day or office.
How Should Organisations Adapt
Organisations on the hunt for talent will do well to change now rather than wait till they “have to”. My philosophy of “shop when you don’t have to” augurs well for me. I buy wedding gifts on my travels when I don’t need them. This way I am always well prepared when I receive an invite to an event. I know of people who run around looking for a gift at the last minute.
This is no different to an organization. Yet I meet many organisations that are still holding on to fear-based rule and bureaucracy, which is a major turnoff to most young people. Ruling in a coaching style will yield far greater results as new generations love the democracy that comes with it.
Working from home seems to be a hot topic today in Asia. Many Western cultures have already deployed people into this structure but there is a big struggle to implement this virtual workplace effectively.
We have to acknowledge that not all jobs will have the option of working from home. Customer facing roles and ones where employees need to engage with other departments may have no choice but to stay working in the office.
With the ones who are given the option to work from home, there needs to be clear lines drawn as to output and results expected. If expectations are not met the option can be withdrawn. This ensures a win-win for both the employee and employer.
What is required most is the element of TRUST. Migrating from fear and control to trust is a big step, one that organisations must make in order to heighten employee engagement with the new generations.
Be an attractor for talent now by implementing some of the tenets of what new generations are looking for. Get the talent you need by changing how you operate NOW!
Sylvia Fernandes is the Founder & CEO of VIA Frontiers established in Sydney in 2002 and is currently based in Singapore. She is a corporate NLP trainer and consults in creating effective people in the Asia Pacific Region. She is also the author of Bye Bye Black Cat – Turn Your Luck Around And Realise Opportunities available on all e-platforms. Go to www.viafrontiers.com or email [email protected] for more information.