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Today’s millennials and GenZ workers are speaking up. Moreover, they are doing so collectively. Loudly. The youngest workers just now entering the workforce have some compelling reasons to speak up. And statistics point to the truth of their assertions.
For example, a 2021 study by Deloitte indicated that 25% of millennials want flexibility in their jobs. In fact, the majority want less time in the office and more time at home. They want, and expect, to make some of these decisions themselves. While this isn’t necessarily a negative, it suggests a sea change among those in the youngest worker generation. This means we all would do well to pay attention to it.
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How can employers best address the interests and concerns of millennials and GenZ employees? We’ve collected the following suggestions to pique your interest and, just possibly, change some work expectations in your own organization.
1. Give Millennials and GenZ Workers a Way to Ease into Work on Mondays
Titled “Bare Minimum Mondays,” the concept is that workers need to take care of themselves before launching into the workload of Mondays. TikTok viewers jumped on this idea, with 1.8 million of them following a video series that suggested Mondays are just too stressful to work.
Their grandparents would find this hilarious.
The prescription for our youngest employees isn’t advocating that they stop everything, including work, to indulge in lazy days. But it is easy to understand why the concept of self-care isn’t a horrible idea. It is one that employers must carefully craft lest production slow down and harm the company itself. While popular, the concept of Bare Minimum Mondays could easily fade away if salary considerations by employers were to become attached to this concept.
How can an organization effectively operate by offering less in-office time and more out-of-office flexibility? One solution might be found in setting a percentage basis to assess how much the out-of-office affects the in-office. For example, perhaps employees could work 70% of their time in-office and 30% out-of-office.
With so many remote workers continuing to work remotely after the pandemic, what would have seemed an unacceptable solution only five years ago now seems reasonable on some levels.
2. Offer Workers an Entirely Remote Position with an Air-Tag Back-Up Plan
It is illegal to track someone without informed consent, yes. Moreover, it’s doubtful that Apple thought a “worker location” air-tag might be useful. Nonetheless, some very outside-the-box employers have suggested this as an option. Some outside-the-box millennials and GenZ employees have agreed.
Not that the workers aren’t to be trusted, but sometimes they aren’t. For example, here’s an interesting factoid: In 2021, the National Golf Foundation reported a record-breaking 26 million golfers took to the fairways, with12 million of them new to the game. Another 15 million enjoyed simulated golf courses.
There are multiple apps and HR solutions for monitoring remote employees, but these seem to be mostly on-then-off-again. Maybe a solution such as “Air Tag Tuesdays” would have once been ludicrous. However, now it seems like a possible solution, if everyone involved agrees.
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3. Give Millennials and GenZ Workers Options for Remote or Partially Remote Work
In 2020, Airtasker conducted a study to measure workplace habits in remote positions. Their findings concluded that remote workers were more productive, exercised more often, and had fewer reported interruptions than those who worked in-house. With finding such as these, the subject is worth a second look for employers.
One answer might be the inclusion of employee options within a company business plan, a written goal or objective that would offer all employees remote or partially remote positions.
A business plan contains every critical component of the business. It is typically constructed in the startup or growth phase. It includes financial projections, mission and objectives statements, operational plans, marketing strategies, and more. The business plan is an excellent place to include the remote-work option. If you don’t have a business plan for your business in place, use this business plan template as a comprehensive guide.
Changes in the Workplace Could Be Beneficial for Both Employers and Employees
The wants and needs of would-be employees suggests that there is a gap between the former full-time-office position and recent partially-at-home position. With the findings that the remote employee may find their position to be more productive, healthful and engaging overall, it is time for the human resources department to consider these requests by the youngest workers of the US and make the necessary changes.
Changes could even portend an improvement, not only for millennials and GenZ workers, but also for employees of all ages. So, who wants an air tag? Who’s ready to go to work…at home?
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