Monday, September 10, 2012

Generational Engagement Drivers, Part 2 of 3 – Generation X

In response to record low levels of employee engagement, I am providing a three-part series to outline specific employee experiences, or "drivers," for each generation that have a significant impact on engagement. The first in the series offered concrete strategies for engaging Baby Boomers at work. This second one covers Generation X. 

Generation X (born ca. 1963-1981) grew up during a time when life seemed to be falling apart. As children, they watched the events of the energy crisis, Watergate, corporate downsizing, and AIDS unfold in front of them. These were the "latchkey kids" of divorced, dual-income, late-working parents. As a result, Gen Xers value security, mobility (which they see as a means to security) and work/life balance. 

To improve engagement in this generation, focus on Gen X's outlook toward:

• Professional Development - Do they believe there are real opportunities to advance within the company or increase their transferable skills?
• Job Security & Autonomy - Does their employment situation feel secure and within their own control?
• Work/Life Balance - Do they feel alignment between their professional and personal lives?

Part three of this series will provide engagement drivers for the Millennial Generation. For additional insight and strategies on this topic, register for my free September 19 webcast, Keeping High Potentials Engaged, hosted by the Human Capital Institute.

Amy Hirsh Robinson, Principal, Interchange Group
Workforce Strategies for the New Economy

1 comment:

  1. JCB says: I have been managing staff, hiring, firing and motivating for over 30 years now; IMHO Boomers, and Gen x have been the easiest to motivate and manage. They respond really well to overcommunicating (being given much transparency as to what we are doing and why with input), to being provided a clear career path, and to being given explained targets and objectives that are linked to the overall mission. They are excitable if the goals are exciting and you are willing to get into the trenches with them to show how to perform and show that everyone has to learn in order to advance. Debates are lively and creative, participation is energetic. I'll be interested to hear about Millenials, because my view of them is that they are split: some are head down and a repeat of earlier generations while others are 'moon-ey' and uncommitted.