In a recent survey about how millennials and boomers relate to each other in the workplace, it won’t surprise you to learn that there’s just a little bit of friction there.
Millennials make up more of the workforce than any other generation, so it must be just a tad frustrating to have all of us baby boomers in their way. Thirty percent of the millennials surveyed indicated that older workers were holding them back from advancing. A quarter of them went so far as to quit because of a boomer manager or colleague. That’s going full OK, Boomer!
But here’s the flip side to that statistic. Thirty-six percent of boomers said they quit because of a millennial boss or supervisor and more than half say they experienced age discrimination.
Some of the findings are so predictable yet illuminating. We know that the generations have different work styles, but it’s still amusing that almost half the boomers are annoyed by the way millennials are always using their smart phones. Thirty-five percent think millennials are lazy and 41% think millennials act too entitled.
Meanwhile, 52% of millennials think boomers are know-it-alls, 47% think they act too entitled and 34% are annoyed by their egos.
Apparently, it’s not all petty grievances at work. Forty-two percent of millennials thought their boomer colleagues were dependable, 41% said they were punctual, and 26% said they had a good eye for detail. Boomers acknowledged that millennials could be positive (34%) and good problem solvers (32%).
One of the most divergent findings was how each generation viewed their employers. Sixty percent of boomers felt that their employer was loyal to them, while only 40% of millennials believed that to be true.
How loyal? Not that much really. If offered more money, 84% of millennials and 75% of boomers would split in a heartbeat.
Will millennials miss us when we’re gone? Hard to say. That question was not in the survey. I would like to think they will miss our steady and dependable work ethic, but it might just be a case where what they really want to know is “Where the hell is the key to the third floor mens room?”
Jay Harrison is a graphic designer and writer whose work can be seen at DesignConcept. His mystery novel, Head Above Water, is available on Amazon and Kindle. You can also visit his author page here.