Sponsored by Oregon Business

How to satisfy the Generation Y worker

| Print |  Email
Monday, October 01, 2007

GenYworker.jpg

THEY ARE YOUNG, smart and tech-savvy. Their high self-esteem results from years of parental encouragement. Look out human resources: Generation Y is entering the workforce 80 million strong. This group of young adults, born between the late 1970s and 1990, is the largest demographic after the baby boomers, who are getting ready to retire in droves. (See LABOR STRAINS)

Generation Y grew up during the corporate downsizing of the 1980s. Unlike their parents, they believe they’ll work for many companies throughout their career, explains Rich Meneghello, a partner at the Portland office of Fisher & Phillips, a law firm specializing in labor and employment. This group needs to feel connected and valued or they’ll take their talents elsewhere. And forget the three-piece suit.

These are adults who grew up in the age of personal computers, the Internet and child seatbelt laws.

Club membership isn’t enough for these workers; they need reasons to feel loyal to a company. Meneghello offers a few tips for companies looking to attract and retain Generation Y:


Provide mentoring. “They want access to the boss,” says Meneghello. Companies with established communication networks enable workers to feel their ideas are valued.


Allow autonomy. Gen Y works best when creatively tackling a problem. Meneghello says employers have to be open. “You can’t give the line ‘this is how we’ve always done it,’” he says.


Embrace current technology. This group grew up with computers and cell phones and let’s face it, they’ve probably helped you program yours. Gen Y workers will leave a workplace if they feel they lack access to resources.


Be flexible. Employers that are open to ideas such as telecommuting are more likely to appeal to Gen Y. Meneghello cautions employers to recognize this generation as a new group of people for whom the old ways might need a little tweaking. It takes time to change the paradigm he says, but in the end taking steps to appeal to this group can foster greater competition between companies as well as innovation.

COLLEEN MORAN


Have an opinion? E-mail This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

 

More Articles

Downtime with the president of NAI Norris, Beggs & Simpson

March 2015
Monday, February 23, 2015
BY JESSICA RIDGWAY | OB CONTRIBUTOR

Live, Work, Play: Catching up with Chris Johnson.


Read more...

100 Best: The Power of the Worker

March 2015
Wednesday, February 25, 2015
BY KIM MOORE | OB RESEARCH EDITOR
AND AMY MILSHTEIN | OB CONTRIBUTOR

Technology is empowering people like never before and transforming how employees interact in the workplace. How can companies attract and keep staff engaged in this rapidly changing world?


Read more...

Imperial Palate

February 2015
Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Power Lunch at the Imperial.


Read more...

Cache and Curry

March 2015
Monday, February 23, 2015
BY JACOB PALMER | OB DIGITAL NEWS EDITOR

Power Lunch at Swagat in Hillsboro.


Read more...

5 schools helping students crack code

The Latest
Thursday, January 29, 2015
codeduthumbnailBY JACOB PALMER | OB DIGITAL NEWS EDITOR

As the costs of college mount, and as employer demand for software developers soars, coding schools and classes are popping up everywhere.


Read more...

Raising the Stakes

February 2015
Monday, January 26, 2015
BY LINDA BAKER

The 2014 Bend Venture Conference set a record for the most cash, investments and prizes awarded at an angel conference in the Pacific Northwest. Investments in the six winning companies exceeded $1 million. The 11th annual conference was hosted by Economic Development of Central Oregon.


Read more...

Emperor of the Sea

April 2015
Friday, March 27, 2015
BY COURTNEY SHERWOOD | Photos by Jason E. Kaplan

Pacific Seafood, one of the world’s largest processors, is rebranding as a more transparent and consumer-friendly operation. A controversial CEO and monopoly accusations from coastal fishermen complicate the tale.


Read more...
Oregon Business magazinetitle-sponsored-links-02
SPONSORED LINKS