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Working for the Next Generation Means a New Nine to Five

Posted By ESA Communications, Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Approximately one-third of Americans now work for someone younger than they are. That finding comes from a CareerBuilder survey, which also points out that 15 percent of those respondents say they are working for someone at least ten years younger. This survey demonstrates the growing diversity of our workforce, not just in terms of race and gender, but also age.

With these changes come differences in expectations, communication, work styles and the nature of jobs themselves. While this broader trend of having young professionals in upper management roles may be less pronounced in the electronic security industry, it still warrants watching. It’s vital for a 37-year-old boss to know what motivates a 55-year-old and vice versa.

CareerBuilder also reported that younger workers (ages 25 to 34) were more likely to work a shorter day in the office, but tend to be more open to working from home, compared with workers 55 or older. Older workers tend to take a more direct approach to tasks, jumping right in. Older workers also tend to prefer face-to-face communications, while younger workers are embracing text messaging more.

The findings shouldn’t be a major surprise as the progression toward remotely communicating with employees has been growing throughout our industry. When your people can get their jobs done anywhere, it’s a good idea to give them the flexibility to do so.

Understanding work styles and communicating with each other are universal principles that improve the business environment and help grow the company, no matter what your age. Your boss might be 15 years older or 15 years younger, which could say a lot about how he or she communicates. Pay special attention to his or her management style, then work closely to be supportive. It takes extra effort, but the company and your career will benefit in the long run.

Tags:  jobs  management  young professionals 

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