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Posts Tagged ‘gen y’

Stress at Work is the New Health Epidemic Amongst Generations

December 11th, 2013

Hi All!

Dubbed the “health epidemic of the 21st century” by the World Health Organization, stress at work is increasingly being seen as a costly issue, thus stress management is becoming one of the most important challenges for employers across the globe. And employees, from all generations, are struggling due to stress. In the U.S. alone, 3 out of 4 workers describe their work as stressful!

A few of the key factors that cause stress for employees include: Firings, cost-cutting, business readjustments, working in an uncomfortable environment, unclear supervision, trouble with the boss, changes in financial status, altered responsibilities, variations in work hours, changed work conditions and office procedures, and transitioning to a different line of work.

However, work-family conflicts are increasingly common, especially with the growing issue of Baby Boomers being “caught in the middle” as The Sandwich Generation. They are now not only caring for their own Gen Y (aka: Millennial) children but also having to be caregivers for their elderly Veteran Generation parents…all while having to maintain a full-time job in the workforce!

The financial, emotional, and physical stress of this dilemma on the Boomers is staggering, and it’s going to continue to grow in severity. So employers are going to have to manage and support it…quickly.

Smart companies are addressing stress in the workplace because it makes good business sense; employee stress-related issues are costing employers around the globe a fortune. Here’s just a few fast facts (out of many on this topic) to illustrate this:

  1. According to a study in the UK, 20% of employees experience work-related distress on an average day, which amounts to 40% of sick days.
  2. On average, American businesses suffer annual losses worth $300 billion, with each employee contributing $2,000 to the losses, in lower productivity, absenteeism, staff turnover, medical insurance, workers compensation, among other stress-related expenses.
  3. 60% of lost workdays each year are attributed to stress.
  4. Only 29% of employees are able to operate at peak productivity levels due to stress.

Based on those stats, it is crucial for employers to take earnest steps to deal with the problem and help employees cope with occupational stress.

Organizations looking to compete in a volatile marketplace are proactively making efforts to address the issue seriously. Examples include:

  • Analyzing the situation to find the root cause of the workforce stress and developing solutions to reduce the issue, such as: educating employees on work life balance, offering telecommuting opportunities, and providing flexible work weeks.
  • Leveraging employee assistance programs, which may include individual counseling, interpersonal skill development, team building, and organizational consulting on change management.
  • Encouraging employees to take responsibility for their health and motivating and supporting them to do so.
  • Requiring staff to do self-assessments in order to find out how they are feeling and asking them to identify factors they think might be contributing to pressure or stress. By getting feedback from staff and responding with a customized plan for each person can be very effective.
  • Taking steps to improve the company’s marketing approach to raise managers’ awareness of the employee benefit programs, such as: online wellness workshops, employee assistance programs, online seminars on issues of workplace stress, and mindfulness training.
  • Communicating regularly with employees to reduce uncertainty in their minds about job security. An employer, and its Leadership and Management Team, should ensure that communication with employees is friendly, motivating, and supportive, giving an equal opportunity to the latter to make themselves heard. It is the employer’s responsibility to show employees that they are valued to the organization. Rewarding workers is a good way to recognize their performance and reinforces their sense of worth to the company.
  • Reducing environmental stress, such as uplifting the workplace by improving air flow, natural lighting, reducing noise pollution, and providing quiet rooms for rejuvenation, can also help improve employee focus and attention, thus reducing their occupational stress.

By focusing on individual stress management and organizational change, businesses can produce more productive, healthier, happier, and motivated employees. But employers have to make it a priority and foster a corporate culture that truly embraces health and wellness in their workplace…not just “say” they do!

Six Popular and Helpful Apps for Baby Boomers

April 23rd, 2013

Hi All!

I have a ritual before getting on a morning flight…I buy an Orange-Orange Vitamin Water and a USA Today. It has become a superstitious-based ritual for me now so I never miss doing it. But that’s not the point of this post.

On a recent morning flight after the doors closed and electronic devices were asked to be turned off, I began to read my USA Today and came across an interesting article I wanted to share with you.

It was entitled, “Golden Apps for a Golden Age”, written by Lynn Allison. She shared ten apps, many of which are free, that were created for Boomers and/or that Boomers find helpful.

Here are six that I wanted to pass along. You can research them to get all the details; I’m just giving you the quick descriptions to get the gist of each:

  1. EyeReader: This is an app for the iPhone that magnifies text and offers extra light making your screen easier to read.
  2. Grocery IQ: This free app enables you to create a budget-focused shopping list by scanning the bar code on any product.
  3. Lumosity: Tons of brain teaser games to improve cognitive function.
  4. Kahnoodle: This was created to help improve your love life by offering cute and clever tips to couples who need to spice things up a bit.
  5. MyFitnessPal: A very hot app that helps users take control of their weight loss and fitness plans.
  6. Find My Car: Using your phone’s GPS, this app enables you to find your car, take notes and pictures of where you parked it, etc.

And for any of you Gen X or Gen Y readers out there, be sure to share this info with your parents or the “older” generations at work. They’ll thank you for it!

Bye for now…

Lisa

Challenges That Faculty Face with Today’s College Students

January 13th, 2013

Hi All!

I’ve been researching today’s College Students a lot recently due to a few key factors:

1. I know a lot of College Professors and Faculty from a wide variety of educational institutions who constantly complain about “how different” their students are these days versus previous generations. I even hear from younger professors, in their early-mid 30’s, who express this opinion, too, so it’s not JUST coming from Boomer and Veteran generation faculty who have been teaching for 25+ years!

2. I’m getting a lot of speaking invitations from educational institutions (i.e. colleges, universities, and vocational schools) to speak to their faculty about how to better communicate with, and educate, their students. I wouldn’t be getting these invitations if this issue wasn’t “real”.

And I can tell you that regardless of the “type” of school they are from, OR the types of subjects they are teaching, OR the student population they serve, the educators I talk to all share the same frustrations and challenges with the students they teach today.

Here are just a few examples of the common ones I hear (and what I focus on in my presentations to help the educators overcome): Students today are lazy; they need to be told “how” to learn; they show up late for class and want to leave early; they show disregard for homework deadlines and exam dates; their parents call on behalf of their adult child with questions or complaints; Etc…

It’s based on this growing “issue” regarding Millennial (aka: Gen Y) students that I decided to blog about this topic today. I don’t plan to provide answers to the challenges mentioned above in this post; I’m simply bringing this interesting issue to light because I typically write about Millennials from an “employee” angle versus a student angle.

To shed more light on this, I recommend that you read this book: “Generation on a Tightrope: A Portrait of Today’s College Student,” written by Dr. Arthur Levine with Diane R. Dean. It covers 2006 to 2011, and distills information from surveys and interviews with both undergraduates and student-affairs officials at 31 campuses nationwide. Dr. Levine is the president of the Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation and former president of Teachers College at Columbia University.

Here’s a brief overview about the book and the information it provides:

An understanding of today’s undergraduate college students is vital to the effectiveness of our nation’s colleges and universities. As Generation on a Tightrope clearly reveals, today’s students need a very different education than the undergraduates who came before them: an education for the 21st Century, which colleges and universities are so far ill-equipped to offer and which will require major changes of them to provide. Examining college student expectations, aspirations, academics, attitudes, values, beliefs, social life, and politics, this book paints an accurate portrait of today’s students. Timely and comprehensive, this volume offers educators, researchers, practitioners, policymakers, and employers, guidance and a much-needed grasp of the forces shaping the experiences of current undergraduates. The book:

  • Is based on completely new research of 5,000 college students and student affairs practitioners from 270 diverse college campuses
  • Explores the similarities and differences between today’s generation of students and previous generations

So whether you’re an educator or an employer, books such as that could be one more tool to help you better understand this new generation you face. And for employers, this could also give you insights for better managing, recruiting and retaining this much-needed generation at work.

I can honestly say they truly are different from previous generations…I’ve been writing, consulting and speaking about Millennials for over 6 years as an expert, as well as conducting Leadership and Personal Branding workshops for Millennial employees and students, so I know them well.

Bye for now!

Lisa

 

 

What Gen Y Means to Occupy Movement and Presidential Election

February 05th, 2012

Hi All!

I recently came across a great blog post by Carol Phillips, a colleague of mine who is also a Millennial (aka: Gen Y) Expert, however she focuses on them as consumers, whereas I tend to focus on them more as employees. And Carol is also the President of BrandAmplitude, LLC and runs the Millennial Marketing blog.

The blog post she wrote, and that I’d like to share with you, is entitled: What the Occupy Movement Means to the Millennial Vote in 2012.

Here is an excerpt from Carol’s blog post:

In the recession-dominated four years since the last Presidential election, Gen Y has gone from being optimistic and ‘hopeful’ to discouraged and angry.  The shift seemed to have happened quite suddenly, triggered by the realization that trillions of stimulus dollars, gigantic industry takeovers and costly bank bailouts were insufficient to create jobs and give young adults a toehold in the economy.

Why ‘sudden’? Even as little as a year ago, I would never have predicted anything like the Occupy Wall Street movement. In fact, when Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert launched their “Rally to Restore Sanity/Fear” in Washington DC last October, I wondered whether it would resonate with a generation notable for its lack of protest and desire to work within the system to create change:

“… the truth is, this generation does care. They are caring by not participating, by disassociating. Stewart also understands this; he gets their approach. They are conservative liberals. They want to change the system without marching down Main Street. Without lowering themselves to the same tactics, name calling and bickering they detest. It’s hard to have a voice when you are disgusted by the tone of the conversation. So instead of joining, they are quiet rebels who challenge the status quo by the way they live, not how they protest. …. The “Rally to Restore Sanity” was a TV staged event they attended, not a grass roots rally they created. Just like Demand TV or ITunes, it was offered up and they clicked “attend.”

When you’re hurting, inequity is an easy concept to grasp — just ask any four year old.  In 2011, evidence of unfairness was easy to find.  The concept that lit the spark was growing lopsidedness in wealth distribution. The target of resentment was easy to find, as well – Wall Street. The way money is made by corporate fat cats and Wall Street bankers became the focus of Millennial discontent, not those who set the rules in Washington. This is good for Obama, and bad for Republicans who are more associated with the 1% than the 99%.

So, what does Carol think it will take to win the Millennial vote in 2012? Click here to read her entire blog post and see what she has to say!

Bye for now,

Lisa

Startling Facts About Boomers and Retirement Savings

December 11th, 2011

Hi All!

Read these scary statistics carrefully. They are fightening:

According to this 2010 report, The EBRI Retirement Readiness RatingTM: Retirement Income Preparation and Future Prospects, by Jack VanDerhei and Craig Copeland of EBRI.org: 47.2% of older Boomers (56-62) are at risk of outliving their retirement savings. And 43.7% of younger Boomers (46-55) are at risk of not having enough money for basic monthly expenses when they retire.

These sobering statistics have millions of Boomers currently wondering, “What can I do to generate income, full-time or part-time, that is flexible, interesting, fun, possible to start on a tight budget, and do way into my golden years?”

I wrote my newest book, Boomers into Business: How Anyone Over 50 Can Turn What They Know into Dough Before and After Retirement”, to answer those questions. I explain how to take what you know, from your career experience or hobbies, to develop a “topic expert” platform that can lead to consulting others, conducting training seminars online and offline, developing many strategies for on-going passive income, and much more.

And it doesn’t matter whether you’ve been an employee your whole career or whether you are currently self-employed. Nor do a person’s education level, career background, or business experience matter. The book was written to take a lot of guesswork out of the process.

Basically, most everyone knows something, from their career background, life experiences or from a hobby that other people will pay to learn about. Whether you’ve been an HR professional your whole career, or a construction worker, homemaker, lawyer, Life Coach,  housepainter, or a lover of growing roses, my book teaches Boomers how to monetize what they know to create a good income, in a wide variety of ways, as a topic expert.

And the book not only teaches how to determine a topic focus and how to create a unique brand platform, but it also outlines the tools needed to launch. Plus, I asked 15 other business experts to provide chapters on PR, marketing, and social media strategies, plus many more business-building and revenue generating ideas.

The reviews on Amazon have been great so far, and here are 2 examples of how my new book is helping those who read it:

“I’m now 50, a single mom with a teenage son, and I’ve worked at Title Insurance companies for over 20 years. I currently don’t have enough money to retire comfortably in my 60’s and have been trying to figure out what I can do make money on-the-side of my day job,” says Kathy F. in San Jose, CA. “ ‘Boomers into Business’ was a godsend! It opened my mind to possibilities I had never thought of before and I’m now developing ideas for an expert platform and consulting business that will provide me with the additional income I need to be more comfortable now and later in my life.”

“This book was so helpful, easy to follow and really fun to read! It’s loaded with
ideas that I can refer to again and again,” shares Marilyn F., a 62-year old Boomer in Santa Cruz, CA. “I’m already self-employed but learned how I can expand my services to be much better off financially. Plus, I learned tons of new marketing strategies that are really effective. I highly recommend this book to any Boomers wanting to improve their financial futures or who are seeking ways to change their career path.”

So, if you can relate to anything you’ve read in the blog post, check out my book on Amazon. It’s available in both Print and Kindle versions, and for a small investment it could bring you a serious return that can help your retirement picture.

And, for any of you Millennials (aka: Gen Y) wondering what to get your Boomer parents for Christmas, my book is a great gift idea! You’ll be responsible for helping your aging parents and this book might help improve their future income situation.

Bye for now!

Lisa

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