For the first time in history, workplaces are home to five different generations: Traditionalists, Baby Boomers, Generation X, Millennials, and Generation Z. A multi-generational workforce can be good news for your company. Each generation brings a unique level of expertise, skills, and experience to the table.
But if you want to harness that potential, a blanket approach just won’t cut it.
To build a workplace prepared for the future, you need to take a modern approach to bridge the generational gap, bringing expectations, communication styles, and perspectives together under one roof.
From a mentoring program to an employee recognition platform, there are concrete changes you can make to better recognize and retain your diverse workforce. Here are five things you can implement today to cater to your multi-generational workforce.
It isn’t easy to manage four or five different generations in the workplace. People of different ages will have different mindsets, values, needs, and working styles.
By 2025, millennials will make up around 75% of the workplace. However, that doesn’t mean you should just be tailoring your employee recognition to that age group. To encourage generational cohesion and make sure every employee feels valued, you need to establish a culture of equal recognition.
That means offering employee benefits that cater to everybody. Instead of adopting a one-size-fits-all approach to employee recognition, your employee recognition platform should be customized to the desires of each generation.
One of the benefits of a diverse workplace is the wide range of experiences from each of your staff. To bring the generations together — and leverage the expertise of your senior employees — you can create a mentoring program to help guide the newer generations in the workforce. This accomplishes two goals: It passes along vital knowledge that helps your workforce grow while also recognizing the skill and experience of your older generations.
Whether you’re developing a coaching program or encouraging informal mentoring on the job, it can be a rewarding experience for all generations.
To meet the needs of all generations, your training experience should be adapted for different learning styles. This is all about engaging with each employee on an individual level. What skills are they coming to the job with? What do they still need to learn — and how can they best understand this information?
Crucially, this extends to tech as well. For some of the younger generations — especially millennials and Gen Z — advanced technology is practically second nature to them. This can impact how they learn in the workplace. And vice versa, some older generations may need more support when learning new tech skills, or they may lean more towards user-friendly technology.
It’s impossible to build a truly inclusive workplace without acknowledging some of the age-related challenges. While the Age Discrimination Employment Act (ADEA) was passed in 1967, many companies are still struggling to address ageism in the workplace. One study found that 64% of employees have either witnessed or experienced age-related discrimination.
Ageism might be associated primarily with older workers, but it can go both ways. Both younger and older employees have reported feeling disrespected or overlooked in the workplace due to their age.
To prevent ageism, you need to acknowledge it first. With comprehensive inclusivity training, you can create a strong company culture that not only addresses age differences in the workplace, but also ensures that each generation feels seen and respected.
The best way to reward employees that span a range of generations is to implement an employee recognition platform. A dedicated platform for offering employee recognition allows you to offer a wide selection of reward options. No matter their background, personal preferences, and interests, there’s something for everyone — from gift cards to dining experiences to outdoor adventures.
That being said, you still need to find the right employee recognition platform for the job. Your employees are coming from different backgrounds, including different comfort levels with technology. It’s more important than ever that your platform is simple and user-friendly.
Managing generational diversity is a critical step to bring your workplace into the future. Each generation brings distinct characteristics — and strengths — to the table. To harness the value of each one of your employees, you need to recognize and reward them as individuals, not as a whole.
Ready to lead your multi-generational workforce into the future? It’s time to set up an employee recognition platform that gives your employees the personalized experience they’re looking for. Contact us to learn more about how our platform can meet your needs.