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Leadership Coaching: How To Manage A Multigenerational Workplace
By Mike Krutza

Boomers, Gen X and Y In The Workplace

Multiple generations occupy the workplace nowadays and it implicates employee benefits. Basically, the workplace is increasingly becoming youthful. Organizations thus have to tailor strategies that will cater to a multiple generation workforce from the standpoint of recruitment and retaining top talents. Baby Boomers who lived in an era of prosperity and opportunity in their 20’s experienced a different economic reality compared to today’s Generation Y that has to cope with reduced opportunity and economic hardship.

The number of Baby Boomers retiring from the workplace is increasing, resulting to Generation Y employees consisting almost half of the workforce worldwide. Organizations want to ensure long term business success that’s why management of the swelling talent pool of Gen Y workers is critical. Generation X and Y employees rely ever more on employee benefits because of demographic differences. In the 10th annual study of Metlife on Employee Benefits Trends, results showed that 66% of Gen Y employees are more reliant on employee benefits (because of the economic downturn) as opposed to only 31% of older Baby Boomers.

Generational Culture And Employment Decisions

Employee benefits strongly influence employment decisions among Gen X and Y employees than they do the Boomers. The same Metlife study found that 54% of Gen Y workers would like to work for a different employer a year from now versus 21% of older Baby Boomers. However, there is a greater commonality among different generations in the workplace, and that is their willingness to pay for voluntary benefits. It is necessary to recruit and retain younger workers, but there are cautions to consider. A company, to be highly productive needs to leverage employee engagement that’s why leaders have to tailor their employee benefits plans and design according to the expectations of a younger workforce. Gen Y employees, particularly the women, appear to be the most dissatisfied with how their employment benefits are explained, and these areas should be improved for a greater return on investment. Generation Y women workers are eager to support the company’s product and information so that personally, they can manage their financial security.

Retaining Boomers In The Company

A Colonial Life research showed that Gen Y is the least financially stable generation. The Gen Y segment in the workforce strongly values the benefits package and personalized communication, but it is woefully deemed as underinsured. There is a growing emphasis on youth in the workplace, but Edwin Redfern, a panelist in the 25th Annual Forum and Benefits Expo in Phoenix, Arizona advises that older workers should be recruited and retained, especially for companies that face current and future skill shortages. Top, experienced talent needs to be recruited, too, that’s why companies have to design and adjust HR practices, policies and benefits that appeal to older workers.

Seventy-eight percent of workers aged 50 and above are working to sustain their health insurance needs while 77% of this group intend to stay in their current jobs until they retire.

Mike Krutza specializes in executive coaching with individuals and teams. Visit Mike’s website here.

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