Pay attention in meetings? Yeah, whatever, say Gen Y workers who are the least likely to use text messaging and social networks for business collaboration. Americans still lead the way in their desire for meetings of any form, though Germans overwhelmingly want to look you in the eye during meetings.
gaps in the workplace manifest themselves in daily practices. What one age
group does for friendly interaction over a smartphone or Facebook, another may
co-opt in the workplace for business use.
The youngest age group at the office is the least
likely to use text messaging and social networking for sharing business
information, according to a Forrester Consulting and Citrix Online study on
generational and country-specific uses of collaborative technologies. Only 26
percent of Gen Y (ages 18 to 34) said they would use text messaging to share
business information with their colleagues. This age group is also the least
likely to use video conferencing, video chat and Web conferencing.
Gen Y is also meeting-averse. Less than 30 percent
think that meetings deciding a course of action are efficient. Only half of Gen
Y thought it was important to pay attention during a course-of-action meeting.
By contrast, the Baby Boom and Gen X age groups
(those over 35), value in person meetings and use text messaging and social
networks for business use. Nearly half of Baby Boomers (47 percent) would use
text messaging and video conferencing for business.
"There is some tension with the findings between
the way people actually work and the communication methods they think are most
effective - a sign that things are in flux," said Bernardo de Albergaria, vice
president of Citrix Online, in a statement. "Despite admitting that
in-person meetings are often inefficient and don't achieve their goals, workers
still seem to like them."
Thirty-three percent of Americans polled in the
study use video chat while British (72 percent), Australian (63 percent) and
German (55 percent) workers use the technology daily and weekly. The French are
right ahead of the Americans in video chat use at 36 percent.
Americans prefer meetings more than any other
country, found the study. More than one-half of Americans polled like meetings in any
form, followed by the Aussies (45 percent), Brits (39 percent), the French (31
percent) and the Germans (29 percent). Seventy-five percent of Germans prefer
in-person meetings, but only 55 percent of Americans said they needed to be in
the same room despite the major tendencies toward meetings in any format.
"We know from
our own experience that the work force is more dispersed and mobile than ever,
and that people are increasingly turning to technology to help them collaborate
with colleagues and customers many miles away," said de Albergaria. "With this
research, we aimed to discover exactly how business communication is changing
because of new work styles and tools."