The Generation Y myths busted

Generation Y employees are by-and-large no different than older workers when it comes to attitudes towards work, according to global research by Ipsos Mori.

The research, which has not been published before, questioned 35,000 employees across the world and found that in general millenials had a higher engagement and motivation in work.

However, this difference was also apparent with younger employees when the same question was asked ten years ago.

Speaking at EB Live, Ipsos Mori executive director Sean Mills said: “We find with Generation Y that they are more enthusiastic and motivated and feel they work in a more supportive environment and are better managed.

“However, 10 years ago under-30s also felt the same, so it’s more of a life stage than a generational change.

“When we look at employees’ expectations they are almost identical between age categories. What really engages people is reward, opportunities for growth and care as well,” he added.

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Similar workplace desires

The survey, which was supported by Edenred, asked what the ideal of a perfect employer would be?

Top result from both younger and older workers was that it rewarded everyone’s efforts.

This was followed by offering growth opportunities, and management that cared about people.

“What we see here is what’s important to people is the same no matter which generation they come from,” Mills added.

However, he highlighted that while what employers did to engage employees should be no different depending on their age, how it was communicated or enacted may need to be adapted.

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Personalisation

Instead, Mills noted that younger employees may need to be given a more personalised environment and communications.

“Any difference we do see is more shaped by the upbringing of Generation Y but not to the extent that they are radically different from others at work. One thing that’s slightly different is personalisation.

“A lot of companies know more about their customers than their employees and are able to offer a much better personalised service to all of those than their employees. What we’re advocating about working with employees is how can you personalise that.

“You need to be careful because of data protection, but what data have you got around your employees that allows you to personalise their experience? We know from that personalised experience they will be more engaged,” he added.

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