How to Manage the Multigenerational Workplace
How to Manage the Multigenerational Workplace

How to Manage the Multigenerational Workplace

Employees across four different generations are making valuable contributions in today’s business world, but each generation comes to work with a different set of preferences for learning and coaching. Because receiving feedback and seeing a path to career growth are key factors in determining employee satisfaction, it’s imperative that HR professionals know how to navigate the needs of their employees regardless of their age.

In a recent webinar with Paycor, noted HR expert and consultant Leigh Branham broke down the differences among the generations and explained how they affect management dynamics.

Feedback and coaching

As times have changed, so has the way employees wish to have their performance reviewed. For traditionalists—those workers born before 1946—no news is seen as good news. They tend not to expect feedback so long as things are going well.

Baby Boomers, meanwhile, expect to get feedback via a formal review once a year, with lots of documentation. As a result, Baby Boomer managers tend to withhold feedback because they didn’t receive much during the formative years of their careers.

That can be tricky as Boomers manage reports from younger generations—Generation X and the Millennials—who need a much greater level of feedback on their performance.

Gen X workers are hungry to know where they stand, and they periodically will seek out their managers to ask with an approach that might be described as, “Sorry to interrupt, but how am I doing?” With Millennials, the bar is far higher. Nine of 10 of these newer members of the workforce expect feedback once a day.

Because of these generational differences in styles, it’s important to have clear policies and procedures in place on a corporate level so all employees understand what is expected of them and how and when they will be judged. Job descriptions and performance review forms and practices should be standardized, and HR leaders must proactively coach managers to help them adapt to their direct reports’ various preferences.

Career development and learning

The generation gap is also evident in how today’s workforce thinks about professional development and continuing education. The ability to see a career path into the future is a key indicator of whether an employee will stay with an organization or seek more opportunity elsewhere.

Traditionalists tend not to prioritize formalized training to learn new skills or job roles. Thus, they might not be quick to offer such training to direct reports. Traditional thinking is, “I learned the hard way, and so will you.”

The Boomers’ thought process is very different but also can lead to a lack of training for their employees. The Boomer generation was raised to believe in lifetime employment with one organization; thus, they see training less experienced colleagues as potentially risky—train them too much, and they’ll leave.

That’s in direct opposition to Generation Xers, who have been shown to stay longer in roles where they have more chances to learn.

For Millennials, continuous learning is a way of life. Having grown up during uncertain financial times, they’ve seen how economic downturns affect workers. Instead of looking for lifetime employment, they’re looking for lifetime employability. Changing jobs is their expectation, so they’re most satisfied when they can improve their résumés and stay marketable.

Want to learn more? View a recording of Leigh’s recent webinar.

From retention to employee training to HR policies, Paycor’s technology can help you manage your team’s talent. With solutions ranging from affordable, online resources such as HR Support Center to a robust HRIS, we have the tools you need to keep up with changing trends. Learn more about what we can do for your business.

More to Discover

Taking the Guesswork out of Employee Pay - Part 1

Taking the Guesswork out of Employee Pay - Part 1

Deep Dive - External Equity and Market Pricing Feel more comfortable with how you determine employee pay at your company by learning how to align market pricing with your business strategy, understanding survey data and market pricing steps. Speakers: Christine Ippolito & Joanna Hall Christine Ippolito, SPHR, SHRM-SCP - Christine is the Founder and Principal of Compass Workforce Solutions, LLC, a consulting firm providing strategic human resource expertise to small businesses to reduce exposure and increase profitability. She has served clients in a leadership capacity for 25 years in multiple industries and environments within Fortune 250, venture capital and equity-backed companies, as well as privately held and family-owned...

Taking the Guesswork out of Employee Pay - Part 2

Taking the Guesswork out of Employee Pay - Part 2

Deep Dive - Creating Base Pay Structure to Achieve External and Internal Equity Take what you learned about market pricing in Part 1 to the next level in Part 2 of creating a base pay structure by learning the steps and considerations in building a base pay structure. You will learn the different approaches that may be used to build a base pay structure and how to maintain your base pay structure and evaluate for effectiveness. Speaker: Christine Ippolitto Christine Ippolito, SPHR, SHRM-SCP - Christine is the Founder and Principal of Compass Workforce Solutions, LLC, a consulting firm providing strategic human resource expertise to small businesses to reduce exposure and increase profitability. She has served clients in a leadership...

Understanding FMLA Regulations

Understanding FMLA Regulations

What is the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA?) The Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) is a federal law that allows eligible employees to take up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave in any given 12-month period for certain medical and family reasons without fear of losing their job. Signed into law in 1993, the FMLA is designed to help employees balance their work and family responsibilities while promoting equal employment opportunity for men and women. Who is Eligible for FMLA? An employee is eligible for FMLA leave if he or she has worked for a covered employer at least 12 months, completed at least 1,250 hours of work during the past 12 months and worked at a location within 75 miles of where the company employs 50 or more people. Keep in...

The Turnover Crisis in Restaurants

The Turnover Crisis in Restaurants

An Action Plan for Owners and Operators Restaurants across the country are experiencing high volumes of turnover at an alarming rate. In 2016, turnover exceeded 70% for the second consecutive year, and the turnover rate in the fast-food industry reached 150%, the highest since data was first captured in 1995*. With record numbers of restaurants and more jobs to choose from, employees are willing to take risks to find the right fit. The demand for restaurant workers isn’t going away, so it’s critical to find the right HCM provider who can help solve your HR challenges with the right combination of technology and expertise. More than 3,000 restaurants across the country depend on Paycor to help onboard new hires, pay them accurately and...