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Generation Y spells trouble for talent management


Many organisations risk losing their most talented employees as the credit crunch takes hold, according to leadership company Dynamic Transitions.

Speaking at the HR director’s talent management breakfast event at the Lord’s Cricket Ground, Dynamic Transitions MD Judith Germain warned that the emergence of Generation Y is “spelling further trouble for organisations who continue to adopt a one size fits all approach to talent management”.

Germain suggested that many of the most talented employees were likely to be selected for redundancy due to their perceived troublesome nature, when in fact, with the right management techniques, these individuals could become the top performers in the organisation.

Germain argued that “troublesome talent” made up 20% of the top performers in an organisation, but accounted for 80% of the problems and urged attendees not to use redundancies to kick out the business’ best talent.

“The reality is that too many employees prefer to keep their head down and follow rules and procedures that don’t work simply because it is easier and acceptable to do so,” she said.

“Troublesome talent, however, are prepared to stand up for what they believe in and will tell managers the flaws in the company’s policies and the issues they face. As a result, they are often singled out as trouble makers.”

Germain revealed that troublesome talent had emerged in Generation X as people started to demand more flexible working and concentration on their individual desires, but the emergence of Generation Y (birth dates between 1980-1994) has meant that organisations need to re-examine their talent management techniques and adopt a more individualistic approach.

“Generation Y employees do not believe in the nine to five, and are more focussed on themselves and their development. They are more likely to question authority and are more entrepreneurial and extrovert than their Generation X predecessors. Organisations need to realise that traditional command and control management techniques just will not work with them,” said Germain.

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