It isn’t possible to generalize a generation, and we need to stop trying to do so.
The Berlin Wall, constructed in 1961, separated East Berlin from West. On the East side of the wall was, of course, the Soviet sector of Berlin, established in 1945. The West side of the wall, comprised of American, French, and British sectors, was a free city that operated with much less restriction than its neighbour over the 3.6m (11.8ft) divisor. Throughout the nearly three decades it was standing, it was believed that all people thought, desired, and acted much different than those over the wall. But did they? In Germany in the middle of the 20th century, there was no talk about generations, no discussion about age; just that of a wall and a political idealism that separated two groups of people into silos, much like generational titles do now. There was no talk about the individual, just the silo the individual was unfairly placed in. The destruction of the wall began on November 9th, 1989. Here, some 26 years later, I’m calling for the destruction of generational barriers in the workforce.
Engagement has traditionally be seen as a binary issue; like it can be addressed as a simple, stand-alone topic. But engagement is more than a single focus; it is a buy-in to an organizational culture, investment in the success of the organization, and the feeling of empowerment to make a meaningful impact while at work. Millennials crave the ability to make a lasting impact, contribute past what their job scope has traditionally allowed them to do, and live a life that isn't focused on the traditional work-life balance, but more along the lines of work-life integration. Hyper-connectivity and a passion to make a difference can be leveraged, not discouraged. Here are several things for executives and HR leaders alike to consider when engaging Millennials.Read more