I read lots of business magazines and blogs. I find it helps me with my own management skills. I also believe the Bible teaches us some great leadership principles. Unless you have lived under a rock then you know that today’s workplace is changing. The “new” generation of workers is more value-centered. Through my conversation with business leaders, what I have read and what I have personally observed this new generation of workers love time at home more than time in the office. They value a company that cares for the environment. They want benefits as well as pay. Fairness and honesty in the way they are treated is of utmost importance to them. They want immediate responsibility and authority in their area. They want to dress comfortably and they don’t expect to do what they are doing forever. Finally, they want to enjoy what they do and have a deep sense of purpose in their work. It’s not that those values weren’t present 20 years ago, but today they are critical to finding and keeping good people.
As I lead and help others do so I’m sometimes faced with a dilemma. What is the balance between creating the “fun”; new values-centered workplace and the need to get a job done well? When do I need to become the “bad guy” leader who pushes for excellence and for quantity of work as well as quality, without really being labeled the bad guy? Because this generation will not work long or well for bad guys.
It seems to me that learning where the lines are, hiring the right people in the first place (of course), and operating with a great Jesus principle of grace and truth, is going to be a key to leading this next generation. If we want to obtain the energy and creative minds of youth then we must learn to manage them well.
I’m praying that I will grow in those skills so I can help others do likewise and I’m once again reminded how much I can learn from Jesus!