Post-COVID, there’s no ‘normal’ when it comes to our working situations.
What’s come to light since most interactions went digital is how hybrid working has impacted generations differently. Whether they’re an office-dweller or more of a WFH-er, how do different generations feel about hybrid working?
How is hybrid working affecting younger generations?
Millennials and Gen Z employees seem to have adapted to hybrid working with ease, with many flourishing in a home environment. In fact, our research showed 62% of 18-25-year-olds were promoted during the pandemic, vs 13% of colleagues aged 56+.
Is this generation facing any challenges in our flexible world? It seems not. 70% of Gen Z employees say the change in working conditions actually improved their personal connections with colleagues, and they feel increased optimism about working life.
What about Baby Boomers?
At the same time, Baby Boomers are feeling quite the opposite. Working from home has made this generation feel more isolated, unheard, and pessimistic, with just 30% of them saying that hybrid work has improved connections with their colleagues. And only 30% believe employee productivity increased with the introduction of remote working.
But, in reality, it’s no surprise when you remember this generation spent most of their careers working in an office. That isn’t to say their mindset won’t change, but the research speaks for itself: colleagues over 56 years need to be catered for, with the right opportunities and support to help them embrace new ways of working and succeed in our flexible world.
How can businesses make sure everyone thrives?
For businesses trying to re-build what work looks like, it can be tough to meet the very, very different generational needs of their employees. And that’s before we look at other challenges, like paying for office spaces that sit empty, and being able to monitor employee performance and productivity levels.
Where should they begin? Research tells us that strong personal connections in the workplace lead to better team performance. So, to bridge this generational gap and boost productivity, employers need to help their team build social connections that foster collaboration and a supportive culture.
That’s where technology comes into play, and the ball is already rolling. 60% of businesses are investing in new digital platforms for their employees, and 80% of these say productivity is one of the main reasons behind these investments.
So, supported by platforms designed to help co-workers connect personally, let’s hope that hybrid work can get to a place where everyone’s happy. After all, it’s the era of the hybrid enterprise.
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