Is Your Business Ready for the Alpha Generation?
Look outside: the kids you see kicking the ball on the playground today will soon be kickin’ it in the workforce tomorrow.
They are the Alpha Generation, the first generation born entirely in the 21st century (2010-2024), and this year the oldest among them enter middle school. In the years to come, they will join the workforce as children of the pandemic and witnesses to major racial and social movements. They have grown up with Alexa and have been influenced by influencers. They have seen diverse leaders at the highest levels, and they know how to use technology better than most.
How will the workplace change when Gen A starts to trickle into the delicately balanced ecosystem of five generations intermingling today? How can businesses compete to attract Alpha workers?
Get Ready: Gen Alpha will Value Training through Technology
Gen A knows that learning is learning, no matter the environment. Author Dan Schawbel predicts Alpha will value skill training over traditional degrees and will be attracted to businesses providing skill-based training. “With an early introduction to smart tools, an affinity to voice, AI, and machine learning, they (Gen A) will learn at a faster pace and be able to apply that learning in new ways. They believe in shared learning since they are highly collaborative, and want education to come to them, and not them to it,” says Schawbel. Training with a video game feel will be particularly attractive.
Innovative technology will be valued, this generation will know how to use it. “These students are increasingly conditioned to take in information at a rapid rate, and their online connections mean there’s more opportunity to share their work far and wide,” says Nancy Richards, head of St. Mildred’s Lightbourn School in Oakville, Ontario. They will use artificial intelligence to complete tasks like scheduling appointments and will prefer texting communication over other forms.
Get Ready: Gen Alpha will Demand Flexibility
As children of the pandemic, this generation knows a different way to work. They see that with a smart phone, the workday never ends, and many have seen their millennial parents experience burnout because of a lack of work/life balance.
Gen A children, survivors of the pandemic, are resilient and flexible. They may want to work from home, but more than that, they want to work from ANYWHERE. “This generation will want the ability to work from anywhere, at any time, whether that be 2 am from a 24hr fast food restaurant or hotdesking in the office. Cybersecurity and cyber insurance will need to be considered by all businesses. Public Wi-Fi is insecure, and business owners will need to work hard to remain compliant with GDPR and data protection legislation,” says Lewis Brownlee.
Get Ready Managers: Validation Will Be Expected
As children of millennials, many Gen A children have grown up with material wealth. They will value high compensation and will want to secure their futures, as they are expected to live longer than any past generation.
Besides high compensation, they will value validation from managers. Growing up with social media as the norm, Gen A regularly receives “likes” and comments from followers on Instagram, Snapchat, and other social media outlets. Managers will need to give feedback plentifully and often.
Get Ready to Recruit Generation Alpha
Businesses can prepare now to recruit future Gen A workers. Author Dan Schawbel recommends the following:
- Use the tools and platforms they are already using (TikTok for example)
- Offer benefits like flexibility and virtual learning
- Communicate your company mission, focusing on how you help solve problems
- Be perceived as a technically savvy and innovative company
In today’s post-pandemic world, some talent may still be swooned by office life and swanky culture, but many candidates tell Artemis recruiters that even The Googleplex takes a back seat to their own couch. Remote and flexible work has become practically expected. You’ll need to find ways to differentiate your company to attract them.
Today’s workforce is currently comprised of five generations: Gen Z (born 1997-2012); Millennials (born 1981-1996); Generation Xers (born 1965-1980); Baby Boomers (born 1946-1964) and the Silent generation (born 1928-1945). As older generations retire, it is every company’s duty to prepare the workplace to understand and respect the unique perspective the younger generations bring.
Get ready: contact Artemis Consultants for your recruiting needs today.