THE NEW GENERATION OF WORKERS NEED NEW LEADERSHIP STYLES
As we continue to actualize our production or service, we tend to make every attempt to hit our
commitments and goals. What makes us unique as leaders is the ability to manage success. There is
always a pattern of accomplishing our goals during our careers but we need to reflect on just what we
are doing to accomplish those goals. There are several ways of meeting our deliverables and
unfortunately we grew up in a society where leadership was recognized for "block and tackle"
techniques . This methodology worked in years past and still can yield results on a short term basis
today, but there are several elements that limits the success of this management technique in our
If you haven't noticed, the world has changed. The mentality of the worker, the philosophy or labor,
and the expectationsof human resources are different than in the baby boomer days. Today's workers
have evolved, especially with Generation Z . The baby boomers strong work ethic was rewarded by
companies by giving lucrative pensions and benefits . Companies revered loyalty and long term
employment with one company. As global competition evolved, companies have been forced to pull
back on benefits and have learned that employees that switch jobs and companies bring forth new
diversityintoaworkforce. GenerationZfunctions differentastheyare social creaturesthat are flexible
innature and expect flexibility frominstitutions andcompanies. Theyare soflexible thatemployers are
challengedtoretainthemif demandsare toohigh. Theyexpect instantaneous rewards and recognition
for performance. They cannotbe intimidated and sometimes can feel entitled to their job. Therefore
we cannot intimidatethemorinsisttheyworklonghoursto please the company or theirboss. They are
now flooding the job market and leaders need to change their style from micro management and a
The philosophy of labor has changed. The labor market will soon have more jobs than people as the
priorboom generation retires. Labor's paradigm is changing to one where employees desire constant
increases insalariesandbenefitsand they do not react to an environment where people are expected
to be patient for recognition. Thisrequiresthatmanagementspendasignificant amountof time onthe
recognition aspect of employee management. Leaders must also determine how they can bridge the
gap betweenexpectations and business restrictions. There is always a way of managing a company to
meet the business's needs and employee's expectations. This does require creativity and good
communication with the workforce to determine methods that satisfy both criterion. Most studies
show that monetary recognition is not the only avenue to engaging and delighting your workforce.
Honestdescription of the business conditions will help employees understand what restrictions exist
and the performance necessary to embrace monetary improvements.
Finally,the nextgeneration of workers have different expectations of human resources. In prior work
generations, the workerdidnotengage humanresourcesasdeeplyasthey do today. Human resources
was the elementthatdefended themagainstunreasonable management demands and was a defender
of worker'srights. Seldomdidpeople involve human resources in anything but these matters. Today,
humanresourcesisviewed as the element that helps workers remain in a safe, politically correct, and
respected workplace. Workers expect that human resources will assure they are continually trained
therebyallowingemployees to grow in the organization. They are looked upon as the employee's ally
and employees use human resources as a sounding board for both work and personal issues. Human
resources' tasks have grown immensely in the last ten years as they have expectations from the
workforce that assimilates both a counselor and personal carrier growth advisor.
In conclusion, our success as leaders is dependent on an engaged, self empowered workforce that is
allowedtobe creative andinvolvedindeterminingthe business's future. This workforce is more highly
educated and has characteristics that will not respond to older management styles. It is the leaders
responsibility to change their tactics and embrace the new workforce's personality. It is an enriching
workforce that will guide us into a better workplace and one that self actualizes itself to a more
productive societyif we embrace them. Donot relyonthe "Block andTackle"micromanagementtactics
as they will eventually fail. Leaders will be more successful if they accept this new generation's
philosophy and work with it to aspire the business to new heights of performance.
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