Understanding the differences in the four generations currently in the workforce can go a long way towards finding and retaining high performing employees. Since the company’s development in 2003, the people of n-gen People Performance (ngenperformance.com) have made it their business to understand what motivates and inspires all generations of workers including Traditionalists, Baby Boomers, Gen X and Gen Y employees.
“Because Traditionalists and Baby Boomers aren’t retiring as early as expected due to the economy, four generations – each with different behaviors and expectations about recognition – uniquely are currently in the workforce,” says Adwoa K. Buahene, managing partner of n-gen People Performance Inc. “Members of Gen Y, for example, tend to think and work as a pack so they prefer to be recognized as a team while Baby Boomers seek individual recognition.”
TharpeRobbins, a global leader in the managed employee reward and recognition industry, has partnered with n-gen to learn how to use this knowledge of generational differences, to drive productivity, improve people strategies, and deliver business results. The result is a new product mix of offerings resulting in what TharpeRobbins calls Generational Merchandising™.
“We have developed our new Omni Mall program using the concept of Generational Merchandising™ to guarantee that we have rewards that appeal to people from their early 20s to those in their mid 70s and across cultural lines as well. Through a careful process of testing over many months, we have refined our product mix to literally offer something for everyone,” says Anthony Luciano, senior vice president of sales and marketing for TharpeRobbins. “Because of the huge range of products, our new Omni Mall program has been very well received.”
TharpeRobbins is also applying this generational knowledge internally.
“When we learned just how differently each generation views the concept of work, my professional life changed forever,” says Susan Tolle, vice present of talent for TharpeRobbins. “It makes so much sense and has enabled us to view the workforce in a whole different way.”
TharpeRobbins is now revamping its performance review process to account for generational differences and will be educating the entire team so that everyone will have a better understanding of each generation’s goals and values. The objective is to make the company a more smooth running operation by promoting better communication and teamwork across all departments and levels.
Accounting for generational differences will shape all that we do moving forward. As larger numbers of Gen Y move into the workforce, the length of service awards that were so important to the loyal Traditionalists will become less meaningful. Instead, wellness and teamwork awards will become drivers of performance,” adds Tolle. “At TharpeRobbins, our goal is to always be one step ahead of new developments in the workforce.”
TharpeRobbins and n-gen People Performance will publish a white paper outlining generational differences in the workforce later this month at tharperobbins.com/.
For more than 100 years, TharpeRobbins’ rich history as an innovator has covered the breadth of managed reward and recognition programs. The company fosters superior performance by creating new standards for employee recognition and rewards through imaginative solutions, cutting edge programs, flawless execution, professional service and world-class technology. TharpeRobbins built its reputation on developing customized programs to help clients reach their employee attraction and retention goals. The company is passionate about recognition because they know that an engaged workforce produces satisfied customers, which in turn produces more business. With TharpeRobbins, Recognition Changes Everything.
The privately-held TharpeRobbins was created through the February 2007 merger of The Robbins Company, founded in 1892, and The Tharpe Company Inc., founded in 1981. The company headquarters are located on a 25-acre campus in Statesville, N.C. and include an extensive showroom and state-of-the-art distribution facility. The ISO-certified Attleboro, Mass., operations include creative services, software development and jewelry manufacturing.