In an article, “Be prepared: Generation Y workers are a different breed” (available here), Jerry Osteryoung explains:
Eventually, you will have to manage Generation Y staff. These are people who were born after 1978, who will in time become the backbone of our labor force. It will require a real understanding on your part of what causes their behavior and what they want to get out of the workplace. Generation Y’s behavior and motivation are much different than Generation X and baby boomers.
His main points seem to indicate that all Millennial (Gen Y) kids are children of Baby Boomers, and he relates their current drivers and motivators to the influence of their driven Boomer parents. For example, he says that because they were pushed to be over-involved in so many activities as children, they now actively seek control over their own schedules, striving for flexibility and free time. I am not convinced that all Millennial kids are children of Boomers. But his article makes good reading, anyway. His main point that Gen Y will be different from anything we’ve seen so far in the workplace is important.
A summary of his key points appears below:
- They will want jobs that allow them to grow educationally.
- They are tech savvy, and want to be connected and digital at work.
- They strive for flexibility – especially they really strive for freedom from fixed constraints
- They want to do work that is meaningful. They are really looking for purpose in their work experience that is significant, but much more than monetarily.
- They are not loyal at all to the company they work for.