Article: Book Review: Millennials and the workplace


Book Review: Millennials and the workplace

A book on expectations of the Millennials, the workplacerealities, and how organizations can bridge the gap
Book Review: Millennials and the workplace

Empirical research and case studies construct a frameworkfor architecting the organizations of tomorrowthat unleashes the po tential of Millennials


It is neither the strongest of the species nor the most intelligent that survives; but the one that is the most adaptable to change. The authors - Pritam Singh, Asha Bhandarker and Sumita Rai in their book, Millennials and the Workplace: Challenges for Architecting the organizations of Tomorrow, have aptly dealt with the changing workplace environment, mindset of the young Indians who are joining the workplace and the need for contemporary organizations to be well equipped and prepared to handle the complex challenges being meted out by the Millennials. The authors argue that Millennials have moved from obedience to questioning; from acceptance to evaluation; from blind faith to inquiring, challenging and judging; and bring out the gap between what Millennials expect from the workplace and what they get at the workplace.

The book, a well researched treatise, has been organized in five chapters delving deep into the meaning of workplace, the characteristics of Millennials, the expectations and aspirations of Millennials, the existing gap, and the contours of the new workplace that would create alignment between what is expected and what is offered. It studies the Millennials, where they have been profiled according to their demographic and psychographic background, together with selected personality factors like Work Locus of Control, Personal Values and Achievement Motivation. Building upon empirical research and case studies, the authors attempt to sketch a new framework for architecting the organizations of tomorrow, which will unleash the potential of Millennials. It focuses on ways to create the future workplace around the most highly desired Millennials expectations – entrepreneurial innovation; equity, justice and fairness; self development; and free will.

With specific reference to expectations vs. reality of workplace attributes, the book examines one of the important outcomes of the gap between the two – intent to leave - with the intention to understand the key push factors predisposing Millennials to look out for opportunities. The reasons as pointed out by the authors vary from negative work environment, toxic boss, unfair treatment and performance inequity, work pressure to monotonous and uninteresting work. Further, it states that people tend to use their experiences with the boss to generalize about the organizational realities. In this context, the book deliberates in depth on the type of boss preferred by Millennials. The preferred qualities (according to interviewed Millennials in the study), are that the boss should be – humble and listening; inspiring and empowering; just and fair; give valid and honest feedback; smart and a clear thinker; nurturing mentor and guide; open and approachable; and a team builder.

Written in a lucid language, the book is of great interest in the current context when organizations are going through a churn. A must read for those who seek to build organizations of tomorrow.

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Topics: Diversity, #BookReview

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