Employee Engagement in Today’s Multi-Generational Workforce

Topics: Generation Y, Demographics, Baby boomer Pages: 11 (4084 words) Published: November 4, 2012
T he emerging need to efficiently and effectively manage the multi-generational workforce has become in of the priorities for managers. This paper relates to the need of having and engaging in practices that foster the understanding of the difference among generations in order to establish and conduct healthy approaches when managing personnel. The paper also relates to the need of establishing clear sets of goals and strategic initiatives to build a workforce that is engage, productive and fully identify with the organization’s culture.

For today’s global workforce of four generations of employees and countless cultures, a careful approach must be taken in order to address the various needs of each individual. Nowadays, managers face the unique challenge of motivating and engaging employees across generations with noticeably different work styles, performance goals, and ethnicity into the same work culture. Therefore a careful approach will be conducted throughout the paper to show the importance of understanding why employee engagement is important, what drives employee engagement, how to motivate employees from different generations, the trends use to manage difference in generation, the use of knowledge management to transfer information across generations. Understanding Employee Engagement

Employee engagement is relatively a new concept among the HR practices. The Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychology describes employee engagement as an unclear and ambiguous term for both academic researchers and among practitioners, consequently they offer three different facets in order to clearly display the concept and to be able to draw conclusions on employee engagement. The three facets consist of the psychological state engagement, behavioral engagement, and trait engagement. The first facet of engagement: Engagement as a psychological state, according to (Macey and Schneider, (2008 ) refers to the form of absorption, attachment, and/or enthusiasm. In the operational level, engagement is measure through four different categories: job satisfaction, organizational commitment, psychological empowerment, and job involvement. Macey and Schneider (2008) noted that when satisfaction is evaluated as a positive feeling, and as a good emotional state it becomes a facet of engagement. Commitment is noted by them as a positive attachment to the organization which is measured through both the willingness of the employee to support the organization and by the personal identification the employee shows towards the organization. Psychological empowerment encompasses three dimensions, self of purpose, self-efficacy, and feelings of control that lead the employee to action. Job involvement refers to the magnitude in which an employee psychologically relates to the organization and the work performed therein. The second facet of engagement introduced by Macey andSchneider (2008 ) is behavioral engagement and refers to the combination of innovative behaviors, initiative, and the eagerness to find opportunities to contribute to the organization. It also includes the behavior that goes beyond expectations. The third facet introduced by Macey and Schneider (2008 )is trait engagement. This facet explains that there are two aspects that can contribute to a state of behavioral engagement. One aspect is the personal traits of the individual, and the other one refers to the positive conditions encountered in the workplace. The first aspect, personal traits described by Macey and Schneider (2008) suggests, that positive affectivity, which refers to being enthusiastic and energetic, are part of a personal trait. The second aspect described by them is conscientiousness, and refers to the individuals who are ‘‘hard working, ambitious, confident, and resourceful”, and the autotelic personality implies the trait in which people engage in...
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