What do these words describe? They are the adjectives used to describe Generation Y or the “Entitlement” Generation.
So how do you lead and train the so called “Entitlement” Generation if they exemplify these adjectives?
HRResource.com says: “Most of them definitely do NOT need technical training as they have grown up with cell phones, computers, the Internet, and personal electronics. However, because they have had all of these technological advantages, many of them lack social skills and a sense of what is appropriate in an office. “
Beware of stereotyping Generation Y.
Yes, some workers of Generation Y are lazy and lack social graces. While other Generation Y workers exhibit leadership skills, a hard work ethic, and a knowledge of professionalism from their corporate parents.
These exceptions to the stereotypes of Generation Y are the people you want working for you! Do not automatically assume Generation Y workers are incapable of certain skills based on stereotypes. The training you develop for them based on generalizations will be a waste of time, resources, and money. You will turn them off from your company by assuming their weakness and strengths.
So how do you lead Generation Y, my generation?
- Treat us as individuals. When we walk into the workplace forget the preconceived notions you have developed based on the generalizations of our generation. These generalizations may not be correct and you automatically start your relationship with your new employee on the wrong foot.
- Create relationships with us. Use effective leadership communication and figure out how you can “light a fire under our bellies.” Ask us questions to determine what leadership styles we succeed with and to learn about our strengths and weaknesses. Creating relationships with us will help your bottom line because it will increase morale and efficiency.
- Compromise. You don’t have to change your organizations leadership styles or the way your organization operates because Generation Y is coming in. However, as new people representing different demographics come in, realize that the workplace can capitalize on the new, innovative ideas that they bring. In a leadership article, “Managing Generation Y as They Change in the Workforce,” Jenny Floren the CEO of Experience said, “If employers evolve as their workers evolve, the end result will be a more dynamic and competitive organization where knowledge is shared, action is taken quickly and new avenues are opened.” Listen and implement new ideas while simultaneously keeping the old ideas that work.
So I caution you to be weary of stereotypes.
This lesson can be applied to all of the Generations Y, X, and the Baby Boomers. There are always exceptions. These exceptions are the people you want to work for you because they exhibit determination, leadership, and defiance to the stereotypes of their generation.
On a side note:
To the Generation Y workers out there. Exhibit innovative leadership, persistence, and succeed in the tasks your given. Listen to your superiors and develop relationships with them. Defy the stereotypes of your generation.
Guest post from Kim, Not Your Ordinary Intern