We have a bit of an impromptu theme this week starting with our article released Monday. Generations X and Y are popular topics these days. I have been catching up to some older articles and came across this one from allbusiness.com which is the title of this post.

Overall, it is a strong article with good tactical suggestions for managers. Some seem simplistic – be clear from the outset, be a mentor and teach them business standards. Yet, I can immediately think of 5 examples where sales managers did not perform such rudimentary tasks. Maybe these items are topical fodder for management articles nowadays?

Two points really jumped out from this article and merit a mention:

Give them free rein to multitask. Keep in mind that your young staffers can multitask unlike any generation before them. This means that they can send e-mails, talk on the phone, and compose memos at the same time €” and enjoy themselves in the process.

Absolutely on target with that bullet point. It is almost unnerving to watch the efficiency with which the younger generations can juggle electronics. Progressive managers know how to leverage this multitasking skill. One caveat – keep a close eye on their attention to detail. If the Gen X and Yers push it too far and too fast, quality is the first casualty.

Strive for work-life balance. Young employees fill their lives with many activities €” sports leagues, social groups, classes, time spent with friends. They work hard, but they are generally not workaholics. Home, family, and friends are often their first priorities.

Second arrow in the bullseye. I have sat through interviews where you could see the Gen X candidate skillfully sizing up the work level of the position. It wasn’t that he was trying to avoid a 40 hour work week, he was trying to sort out if the company was masking a position that truly required a 60 hour work week.

These new, youthful generations have already started changing the workplace in dramatic fashion. Again, progressive managers (including older Gen X managers) will need to adjust accordingly as Generations X and Y become the majority population in the labor force.

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