Causing trouble at the office – attitudinal differences to clocking off between generations 

There’s a clash of values and expectations in the office these days and it’s causing trouble. Millennials demand a good work/life balance while older generations tend to believe in doing whatever it takes, at whatever price to their personal life, to get the job done.


So come 6pm, while millennials nonchalantly skip out the door, their leaders are hunkering down for another late night at the office. They have accepted another crazy deadline from the client because that’s simply what you do.


Or is it? Which of these approaches to work is right? Should we strive for a people-first culture or a profit-driven culture? Or a mix of both?


Clearly, a good work/life balance is desirable for employees’ well-being, productivity and retention. But old school style leaders are having a hard time accepting their juniors’ unwillingness to work beyond their contractual hours. And that’s before we factor in a budding resentment that they are the only ones burning the midnight oil.


While this has been brewing, many millennials have worked their way up the ranks and are now leaders too. They still expect a values-driven company culture that supports a good work/life balance but are often disappointed to find that, from the dizzy heights of success, this is far from the reality. Perhaps they aren’t give the resources required to keep their own and team members’ workloads at reasonable levels. Should they now ditch their precious family time, or go elsewhere in search of a genuinely people-first culture?


The answer lies somewhere between a people-first and a profit-driven culture. As HR professionals, we must ensure that we have enough qualified staff to get the job done without anyone having to work consistently overtime. We need to put in place systems that ensure individuals’ workloads are realistic regardless of seniority, and that our infrastructure genuinely supports a good life/balance. At the same time, we need a workforce that is prepared to go the extra mile when necessary.


In other words, we must ensure that the daily reality of our employees is aligned to both their own values and those of our company. This is why it is so important when hiring to have a values match. But that, dear reader, is a whole other story…


Read here for more details on this matter, or get in touch with your trusted recruitment partner at ABL Recruitment to share your views on the importance of a value match in hiring staff. We’d love to hear from you!