This blog looks at the diverse ways in which hiring a multigenerational workforce can benefit your business.
Diversity is one of the most popular buzzwords in business these days and should be a focus for leaders and hiring managers everywhere. Research shows that more diverse businesses outperform their competitors in several ways, but diversity can take many forms. One of the most overlooked of these is age.
Many businesses already engage in multigenerational hiring as a matter of course but many more do not realise the benefits it can offer. In this blog, we will look at some of the ways that building a multigenerational workforce can help your business and why it should be a focus for any hiring manager.
You Incorporate Different Perspectives
Every generation brings with them a unique set of experiences, perspectives and approaches – all of which are beneficial in the workplace. However, any organisation with a narrow generational makeup is limited in its exposure to new ideas. Businesses with a multigenerational staff will naturally be exposed to a wider variety of experiences and outlooks that can prove highly beneficial.
Firstly, having greater age diversity in your business helps avoid falling victim to any biases that might otherwise emerge. Every generation has certain views and beliefs that become built-in to how they approach work, and these views can eventually become limitations. The key here is to understand that the different ways of working each have their own merits. If you can ensure that you have a balance of both your business will thrive!
A business that isn’t as balanced may be inadvertently relying on methods that are no longer relevant to new technologies. It’s smart to constantly evaluate a business approach because when we know better, we do better.
Some methods of working that worked 20 years ago may not fit your current business vision, but some will – and that’s okay! As long as you know how to keep things balanced and help your whole team understand all approaches, you’re going to find better success.
Embracing and incorporating different perspectives is always a good thing but several other benefits come from building a multigenerational workforce.
You Can Retain and Transfer Knowledge
Knowledge loss is one of the most damaging things that can happen to your business. When employees leave the business, they take with them an immense amount of knowledge that cannot be easily replaced by someone new coming aboard. This could be organisational knowledge (e.g. strengths and weaknesses, industry positioning and advantages) specific skills or knowledge of processes, and even their network and connections.
Having a multigenerational team allows you to retain and transfer this knowledge between generations before you lose it from your business altogether. Just as parents pass on their knowledge to their children, so too can the older members of your team pass on knowledge to the younger employees.
The benefit of this is twofold. Firstly, you avoid having to engage in a time-consuming and costly hiring process (or several of them) to replace what you have lost. Secondly, the act of transferring this knowledge in all its forms will make your younger employees feel more engaged with and motivated by their work and will increase their loyalty.
Employees value organisations that support their development and professional growth and want to reward those that do so. By employing a multigenerational team, you are not only keeping skills and knowledge within the business but ensuring its success long into the future.
Your Business Is More Flexible
A multigenerational workforce will make your business more resilient and more flexible. The nature of modern work means that change is constant and often sudden. Successful businesses are those that can adapt to them.
Technology is the greatest change that affects most businesses and having a multigenerational team enables you to adapt more easily. In a multigenerational workforce, knowledge flows both ways – from young to old and old to young. Just as your older employees pass on organisational knowledge and job skills, younger employees pass on knowledge of technology and other modern processes. This exchange helps eliminate skill gaps, reduce training costs and build a more robust business.
Having a mixture of youth and experience in your business enables you to adapt to changes, positive or negative when they arise. Younger employees might be good at identifying new markets or niches, while the knowledge and experience of older employees allow you to capitalise on them.
Similarly, in challenging times the older generation will have proven methods of riding out the challenges, whereas the younger generation might suggest innovative new solutions to your problems. Having this mixture throughout your business will allow you to manage the tough times and take advantage of the good times when they come
The beauty of building a multigenerational workforce lies in the strength and flexibility it provides. No organisation can hope to be strong in all areas but the more you hire across a broad age range, the better chance you have at shoring up your weaknesses. Having a multigenerational team will allow you to incorporate more diverse perspectives, retain and transfer knowledge more easily and remain flexible in difficult or promising times.
If you are interested in learning more about how to prioritise diversity and inclusion in your hiring strategy, reach out to one of our team at Employment Group. Working from six key hubs throughout Australia and New Zealand, we connect your organisation with leading talent in professional, industrial and executive roles. Get in touch today and find out how we can help to take your business to the next level.