set them up for success.

  • workforce insights
  • January 24, 2017

As more Millennials settle into management roles and members of Gen Z graduate and join the workforce, it’s more important than ever for you to understand the preferences of these two generations and what steps you can take to help these valuable members of your company thrive in their roles. 

We surveyed the oldest members of Generation Z, 22-year-olds in full-time employment, and 23-to 34-year-old Millennials, also known as Generation Y, in order to compare expectations with the reality of workplace experiences. We learned a lot about their perspectives on the skills they wish they had when starting work, what assistance they’d like to see from employers and more.

In addition to their priorities and expectations, these generations face a particular set of workplace challenges. Specifically, we asked: 

what aspects of your current job did your education not prepare you for?

Because they didn’t acquire these skills in school, members of these generations are more likely to feel insecure about their abilities in areas like conflict resolution and negotiating, which means they’re likely to need a little extra help in order to succeed.  

If you identify any of these concerns in your younger staff members, it’s important to take steps to address them and set your employees up for success. You could bring in a guest speaker to host a workshop on conflict resolution or host mock negotiation sessions to build your employees’ confidence. 

Both generations also cited a lack of preparedness in working long hours, which is likely directly related to poor time management skills. Demonstrating how to work smarter, not longer, will alleviate some of this anxiety. Work with your staff to identify and prioritize their assignments, allowing them to focus on what needs to get done. As these generations are programmed to multitask, you may also need to show them the benefit of focusing and finishing one thing before starting on another.

To improve skills in areas like time management and conflict resolution, and to remain competitive with these generations who are eager to learn, companies should be offering a number of development programs. What works best for one generation, however, may not be the best route for another. 

our study asked what types of learning and development programs would be most beneficial to success at a company.


If you are not offering the type of development opportunities that a multi-generational workforce demands, it’s time to re-evaluate your training program. By providing proper support and guidance and the tools your staff find most beneficial to their success, you can create strong, empowered employees. 

For more information on how employees from these two generations compare, view our additional Gen Z & Millennial insight. And when it comes time to hire the best of these generations to work at your business, our staffing experts can help find the perfect-match candidate for your company.