The workforce of today is vastly multigenerational, with some pre-baby boomers still holding significant positions in businesses around the world, and the post-Millennial Generation Z (born in 1996) just now beginning to arrive into the workplace. Managing employees from across these boundaries with their various wants, needs and aspirations can be a challenge for even the best managers. If used in the right way, this multigenerational diversity can be a huge benefit to those in the global mobility sector.
Across the various generations in the workplace today there is a diverse set of skills, experience and knowledge that can be put to great use. Each generation can provide a unique perspective for you to use in your service offering, providing a more complete view of the relocation industry for your clients. Utilising this opportunity for diverse collaboration on projects will also increase morale amongst employees, as they feel their contributions and experiences and worthwhile and valued.
Remember that the global mobility customer base is one that is incredibly diverse and you need an equally diverse workforce to engage with your assignees properly and really understand their needs. The diversity in skills and knowledge provided by a multigenerational office is just one of the possible routes to achieving this. Assignees come in all shapes, sizes, ages and cultures, so try and reflect this in your hiring.
Once you have a genuinely multigenerational workforce at your disposal, one of the most challenging aspects can be finding an effective management strategy. While Millennials are known to value flexibility over all else, Baby Boomers are more likely to be looking for very regimented 9 to 5 positions. These may be stereotypes, but they must be embraced if you wish to utilise your employees to their full potential. Create a workplace where every generation can work to their full potential across boundaries by recognising commonalities and differences.
One of the great things about employing a workforce across generations is the benefits of the different generations can be shared throughout the staff. An excellent way to achieve this in an informal and supportive setting to set up casual mentoring opportunities across age groups. Generation X-ers can provide career and progression insights to their colleagues, while the Millennials can deliver insights into more modern internet or tech-based fields.
You should also consider a framework that allows employees of all ages to explore and develop their leadership skills in multigenerational teams. For each relevant project, assess the required vital skills to complete the tasks at hand, and assign the primary responsibility to the person who best fits the needs. Giving ownership to the right person, regardless of age, will reduce the perceived differences and provide all members of staff with a chance to broaden their horizons.
Remember that besides providing you with the ultimate task performing team, hiring and managing a diverse workforce in an effective manner shows your business in a favourable light to your clients. By advocating for fair employment practices, you can attract and retain talent in any required field, and will also find that employees are less likely to leave the business for different pastures. Your staff take pride in working for you and develop increased loyalty, which many organisations now lack. All of this leads back to cost savings, as recruitment is needed less often and requires less time and effort.