Gen Y Workers Get Mixed Reviews

A third of our survey respondents reported that, while the work of Generation Y employees (workers born between 1980 and 1995) has met expectations, these young employees have a disconcertingly strong sense of the rights and privileges due to them. “Many employers believed that the economic downturn would dampen Gen Y’s sense of entitlement,” says leadership consultant and executive coach Joyce Grillo. “It hasn’t; it’s in their DNA. You can’t just hire them and neglect to do what is necessary to engage them.”

To reach their potential, Grillo says, Gen Y workers need to be challenged, to feel like an essential part of the team, and to have some say in decisions about their day-to-day life in the office. Understanding this dynamic could help businesses figure out how to attract younger consumers, as well, she believes.

Haven’t had a Gen Y employee on your staff yet? You will soon, says Grillo: “Small businesses who couldn’t compete with Fortune 1000 companies now have a real opportunity, when so many are unemployed and eager to work.”