On today’s podcast, we talked about the generational differences with work ethic and answering one of the most hard hitting questions: “Why are millennials so lazy?”

You can download this episode from Itunes or Stitcher or listen below.  Check out our breakdown of the conversation.

GENERATIONAL DIFFERENCES

Category Previous Generations Millennials
Promotion A promotion is based on the amount of time you put in A promotion should be based on your abilities, strengths and your contribution to the organization
Work Schedule Structured 9-5 schedule with compensated overtime No specific work schedule and the ability to leave when work is complete and to do work on off-hours when they are most productive
Work/Life Balance Interest in leaving work at work and home at home Seeking more work/life integration and tend to mix the two
Organization’s Standards Change their needs to meet the company’s Looking for the company to meet their individual needs
Supervisor Boss is respected because of their position Mutual respect when earned

WHY ARE MILLENNIALS SO LAZY?

We are not here to stand up for all millennials as there are some bad eggs, as in every generation.  Some people just are lazy and don’t pull their weight at the job.  What we do want to point out is that a lot of millennials do work hard but most likely in the off hours.  They are the ones answering their emails late at night and being productive during their peak times.  On the flip side, they might also be done with their projects by 2 in the afternoon and want to leave making it appear that they are lazy and don’t want to work.

Our advice to overcome the lazy stereotype:

  • If you have an adjusted schedule and can leave, communicate it clearly to your coworkers and don’t just bail.
  • If you don’t and are finished your work at 2pm: ask to help others with a project, work on some professional development, and develop relationships with other teams.
  • Take a coworker to lunch to learn about other departments and upcoming projects you can work on.
  • Schedule an intentional meeting with your supervisor to discuss alternative schedules.  Think about the organization and where you can meet their needs. This conversation is not about demands and about finding a win/win.
  • Be intentional and structure your day to be most productive.  Do your most important work during your peak times and check your email or activities requiring less brain power during your “off” hours.
  • Communicate with your coworkers and supervisor. Ask questions about what needs to be done and how to be successful.

Suggested Resources

7 Guidelines for Landing a Flexible Schedule

Simon Sinek: Millennials in the Workplace

Alissa Carpenter

TEDx Speaker, Author, Facilitator at Everything's Not OK and That's OK
Alissa Carpenter is a multigenerational workplace expert, owner of Everything’s Not Ok and That’s OK and host of Humanize Your Workplace podcast.
She provides training, consulting, and speaking services to organizations all over the world. She has an MEd in Social and Comparative Analysis in Education from the University of Pittsburgh and is a Gallup-Certified Strengths Coach. Her work helps to bridge communication gaps across generations, job functions, and geographies, and she has worked with organizations ranging from non-profits to multi-billion-dollar enterprises. She has delivered a TEDx talk on authentic workplace communication, and has been featured in media outlets including Forbes, ABC, FOX, and CBS. Her book, Humanize Your Workplace (Career Press), is set to release next year.
Alissa Carpenter