Technology, Work Ethic Causing Generational Office Friction
For older workers, digital communication is often seen as an inadequate, or worse, frustrating substitute for face-to-face interactions, Ricoh found.While nearly half of workers (48 percent) say younger employees usually have to help older ones at their place of employment use technology, about seven in 10 workers (69 percent) say younger workers are frustrating when it comes to work ethic, according to a study by Harris Poll on behalf of Ricoh. The study revealed that for older workers, digital communications are often seen as an inadequate—or worse, frustrating—substitute for face-to-face interactions. "Even as the economy has recovered, organizations are not necessarily adding head count, and everyone is feeling the pressure of doing more with less," Terrie Campbell, vice president of strategic marketing for Ricoh Americas, told eWEEK. "So in general, the frustration seems to come as a worker sees a colleague engaging in something like games, social networking, snapchats, etc. It’s a perception issue or a question among coworkers—is everyone carrying their weight? Furthermore, technology plays a role as it’s simply much more easily accessible." When workers are asked to identify which generations make the best mentors, they generally choose their own.
In fact, those 18 to 34 years old (27 percent) are three times as likely as those ages 35 to 44 (8 percent), 45 to 54 (4 percent) and 55 to 64 (5 percent) to cite Gen Y—also known as Millennials—as the best.