HUMAN Capital - Winter 2013 - (Page 20)

ISTOCK/THINKSTOCK FEATURE The Beatonand The Pulse A Millennial's Take Embracing the Intergenerational Workforce BY YIORGOS BOUDOURIS, B.COMM SHIFTING WORKFORCE DEMOGRAPHICS ARE pushing organizations to rethink their diversity and inclusion frameworks. The Gold Star Generation Millennials (born between 1980 and 2000) are the current demographic cohort whose workplace preferences are changing how we work. Millennials are a rather frightening bunch. They replace notebooks with iPads, suits for hoodies, and 15-minute breaks  with power lunches that may include networking, exercising, or stopping at the farmer's market on the way back to their open offices. Even more startlingly, Millennials are multi-tasking, able to walk, talk, listen, type, text, blog, tweet, eat, tune-in and tune-out all without missing a beat. However, when people describe this generation, the same three words are repeated: 20 O cocky, deserving, and entitled. A commenter on a USA TODAY article outlining the personality and social psychology of Millennials sums up what is typically said about this generation, "Millennials should be called the 'Gold Star generation.' Everyone gets a trophy, no one loses, no one can have their feelings hurt, no one can fail. You got a 54% on your test? Here's a gold star, you did your best. Your basketball team got beat 82 to 24? Here's a trophy, and we'll make a rule saying they can't beat you that bad. Better yet, let's not keep score. The fi rst round of these degenerates are working their way in to the workplace and have the worst work ethic I've ever seen. They want $100K/year salary while working 20 hours a week and calling in sick if they don't feel like working. And if they actually complete a simple task, they want a pat on the back and a raise. It's called doing your job, that's what you're paid for." In short, this generation is not very inspirational. Akin to the above, remarks about Millennials are characteristically negative, largely based on observations that Millennials are a self-centred generation with their Instagrams, GoPros, Snapchats, Vines, and, of course, Tumblrs. Complaints made against Millennials include the observation that they require constant praise, they are disrespectful of superiors and they are always asking, "why?". To put it lightly, this generation - my generation - is presented as the worst thing to happen to the workforce, ever. The fear is that Millennials lack maturity to understand business or lack the commitment to make a difference. Working for an organization with an average age of 45, I have on occasion misled my colleagues about my age to alleviate their doubt regarding my contributions. I am certainly not ashamed of my generation, but I am not looking to defend the choices of my peers before the start of every meeting either.

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of HUMAN Capital - Winter 2013

Leadership Matters
Association News
Economic Pulse
Temporary Foreign Workers
Technology and Innovation in Talent Management
The Beat and the Pulse
Breaking Through the Glass Ceiling
Culture and Communication
Hr Legalease
Improving the Lives of Albertans
How to Make Diversity and Inclusion More Than Just Lip Service
Addressing the Gap Between Mental Health and Workplace Fairness Policy and Practice
Index of Advertisers/

HUMAN Capital - Winter 2013