When it comes to older generations communicating with Gen Y and Z, there’s no disputing, they are definitely speaking different languages. Key among the various dialects of millennial-ese is an understanding of, and an expectation for, instant gratification.
Those from previous generations may bristle at the mere mention of instant gratification. To them it is often on par with entitlement, selfishness, laziness and more. Whether or not your propensity toward moral high ground has you shaking your head at all things instantaneous, the fact is, as a business owner there are certain elements of the Millennial-mentality that you simply cannot push away.
You have to learn to talk their talk.
The gradual growth of instant fulfillment
Some might argue it is up to the older generation to de-emphasize the necessity for instant results among Gen Y and Zers, but really, when it’s all they’ve ever known it’s a reality they’re not likely to outgrow.
Think about it. Generation Y (born 1980 to late 1990s), and even more so Generation Z (born 1995 to 2012), has never known a life without fast returns. Instant messaging on your computer and phone; microwavable mac & cheese cups — because the regular packages just take too long. Rice Krispie Treats were once known as the easiest snack to whip up, taking little time or effort. Now, you can buy them already made, leaving nothing between you and your snack except a shiny, blue foil wrapper. Online shopping, next — or even same — day delivery; answers at the touch of a button, or a simple query staring with “Alexa.”
Texting vs. phone calls were once held up as the prime example of the new generation’s shorthand. But emoji communication has taken over the need to even text full, or abbreviated words. Now you can instantly tell the world whether you find the situation you are in to be worthy of a smile, an eye roll or a host of other emotions.
But what does all this mean for your company?
Integrating new language into your business
According to a survey by LinkedIn, the number of companies a person will work for in the five years after they graduate has nearly doubled in the last 20 years. And the number of companies people work for during the 5-10 years after graduating has also increased. Why? It may be due in part at least to the need for instant gratification.
Today’s workforce is used to instant changes, instant promotions, instant feedback and instant success. While you may not be able to meet their needs on each of these scores, finding some common ground is imperative in keeping your employees engaged and employed at your company.
One company, featured in an article on Human Resources Today, recommends a program called DailyPay that allows employees to receive earned wages instantly, rather than waiting two weeks for payday.
The key in all of this is understanding how your employees communicate and learning to speak their language, regardless of the generation with which they align. Human-IQ offers several resources to help translate those languages into something you can easily identify and gives ways for you to respond.
The Predictive Index (PI) for example. It takes just six minutes for employees to fill out the assessment. Then Human-IQ, a Certified partner, evaluates the results and reveals information about each employees’ behavioral patterns, including the “language” they speak.
You have enough to worry about as a business owner. Don’t let the generation gap be one of the hurdles in your life. Find out more by contacting Human-IQ here. It’s your first step in learning to talk their talk.