Is iGen the Impatient Generation?

Posted On January 9, 2020

“Take it slow and things will be just fine. All we need is just a little patience.”

Axl Rose sang that back in 1989 on Guns N’ Roses’ second album. Some millennials weren’t even born back then, and iGen wasn’t thought of yet.

Maybe if they had been, they’d be a little more open to his advice.

The leading edge of iGen is entering the workforce, and they expect to move up quickly. The Wall Street Journal recently cited a survey by workplace-coaching firm InsideOut Development, which found that over 75 percent of iGen respondents believed they should be promoted in their first year on the job.

Which has many of their Gen X managers thinking: “Who do they think they are?”

By the same token, however, these managers want to keep their best young employees motivated and on the payroll. This impatience wouldn’t be possible if the current job market wasn’t competitive.

In a modern workplace that’s already bending over backwards for their millennial precursors (hello, standing desks and flexible work-from-home schedules), many managers are coming up with other ways to keep these young employees engaged.

All employees want to feel like they’re progressing. They all want to see opportunity available to them. They all want to be challenged.

There are ways of accomplishing these goals without a promotion, per se: new titles, new tasks and training, leadership opportunities, special recognition. A little creativity in the organizational chart can go a long way.

Not all of that impatience is vanity, however. The younger generation also likely already has more debt than its parents did starting out, thanks to student loans. That same InsideOut survey found that only 30 percent of respondents expressed confidence they’d be able to repay their student loans.

And salaries aren’t as easily manipulated as job titles or working teams.

Welcome to the jungle.

Categories: iGen, Workplace