With high-speed internet, blackberries, I-phones, and a family cushion of support, companies have a harder time retaining young employees of our generation. Moving from one company to the next is not only commonplace but virtually expected as a particular corporate environment might not necessarily meet the demands of a young professional.
As a devoted user of Facebook, instant messenger, and various other social networking tools, I find it rather difficult to work at a job where access to such content is blocked or restricted for whatever reason. Many purport that the usage of social networking sites on the job is counter-productive and perhaps unethical. However, companies that utilize these may have the upper hand at retaining young employees.
More and more individuals work from home or on the go. Instant messaging a document to a coworker via Blackberry can be done in just a matter of seconds as opposed to waiting for them to arrive onsite. More importantly, we are a generation that has grown up on wireless internet, cell phones, and e-mail. I would argue that the more a company draws the fine line between work and play in their technology, the less likely that they are to survive amidst an evermore competitive Corporate America.
Young employees – unlike their elder colleagues – will not only take a lower-paying entry-level position but will probably be easier to train and mold. In addition, younger employees are the future of any successful company as they will come to replace their older co-workers in due time. Catering to a younger, more informal workforce might just be to a company’s advantage in the long run.
While chatting on Facebook or instant messenger can clearly be a stress reliever at work, multitasking is not always conducive to strong productivity. For those of us who might tend to spend hours on end chatting online with our friends (while on the job) or planning non work-related events, social networking tools might prove themselves to be a devastating weakness. Of that same token, learning to balance play and work is critical for any young worker.
As a rapidly evolving age bracket in a hasty world, the line drawn-up between work and play might not need to be so clear-cut. Rigidity, formality and paperwork are sleeping memories of the past. Today, we enter into a world that only we can delineate. After all, Facebook, MySpace, and the like are college students’ creations. Using them in an efficient, healthy manner would be a good start to revolutionizing tomorrow’s workplace.