Q&A: Implementing Gen Y-Friendly Practices in the Workplace
I have been following you for the last 4 years and have been dealing with Gen Y implications on organizations in Israel. I wondered if you can point out global companies that started strategizing and implementing those strategies. I am looking at global organizations in Israel (HP, IBM, UNILEVER, APPLIED MATERIALS, SAP, Nestle) and cannot see it. Please give me some examples of successful applications, especially with collaboration and knowledge management.
Thanks a lot in advance,
Thank you very much for your note.
I work with a number of global organizations that are trying hard to develop generationally-sensitive approaches for employees around the world, although most would be quick to say that they’ve still got work to do.
Of the companies you mentioned, IBM has implemented a number of interesting practices. They have legitimized virtual work—a practice that appeals to many, but particularly to Gen Y’s. They train leaders in generational sensitivity—how to recognize and respond to legitimate differences among the generations. And their staffing approach encourages teams to tap into the best qualified person for the job—regardless of the individual’s seniority or location.
Here’s a quick re-cap of some of the Y-friendly practices I think are most helpful:
•Communicate, particularly during the recruiting process, in Y-friendly ways
•Address parents as an explicit part of your recruiting strategy – messaging, awareness, concerns
•Shift performance management to focus on task completion, not time spent
•Embrace time shifting, asynchronous work, and flexible schedules
•Invest in technology . . . and in your technology skills – leverage technology to create efficient processes
•Provide frequent feedback – coach first-line managers to teach, rather than assess
•Create a collaborative, team-based environment
•Encourage Boomers in your midst to mentor Y’s
•Don’t over-define the task – let Y’s “figure it out”
•Re-design career paths to offer frequent, lateral moves – not necessarily up
•Provide world-class learning opportunities in all forms
I hope this helps. I’d love to hear of interesting practices you uncover as you continue to study firms in Israel.
And thank you for following my work.
Filed under: Generation Y | Published: 11/10/11
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