Average workers’ retirement age has been push back, and this means that there are more generation groups are co-existing in today’s labor market. There might be many reasons influencing this social norm; however, the result is that there are more generation diversity in the current work environment. For an organization it is impossible not to have diversity and individual variations,but how does one deal with today’s multilevel generations work environment’s complexities within the organization.In
In the journal article “Work Values Across Generations” by Jo-Ida C. Hansen and Melanie E. Leuty in the Journal of Career Assessment, the authors study across four generations: Silent, Baby Boomer, Generation X, and Generation Y that how does the different generations value work. Hansen and Leuty’s study suggest that the “extrinsic ” work values, such as pay, benefits, and security have more similarity between the generations then difference(page 5). Nevertheless, for the “intrinsic” work value the study also suggest the “negative relationship between age and social connections” (page 14). In detail, the younger the generation the greater importance of the”social-connection” to their co-workers; on the other hand, the order generation care less about people they work with under the work-office social interaction.
This behavior might be a result of the attitude toward work itself. The order generation value work differently than the younger generation. The order generation focus on the task and the objective itself rather then the experience and the people who it work with. However, the later generation value more on the connection with its co-workers. Hansen and Leuty, also suggest that the variance between the generations on what they value at work could just mean the different way for the generation to illustrate its importance (page 15-16). For example, the younger generation could show ones importance by connecting between the co-workers since he or she is value by others in the work place.
Lastly, the authors suggest the importance to the organization that having the information about the different generation’s work value is a key knowledge to satisfy and retain the organization’s employees (page 16-17). I believe that by understand the difference values and the preference of the different generations, the organization then further improve work environment and work experience.
- Leuty, M. E., & Hansen, J. C. (2012). Work values across generations. Journal of Career Assessment, 20(1), 34-52. doi:10.1177/1069072711417163
- Slack, T., Amis, J., & Hinings, C. R. (2002). Values and organizational change. The Journal of Applied Behavioral Science, 38(4), 436-465. doi:10.1177/002188602237791