An article in today’s USA Today (November 23, 2011) provides statistics on the new reality of family living. There are 5.1 Million multi-generational families living together in 2010 up from 4.2 million in the year 2000. This means three or more generations are living under one roof. The implications for the workplace are far reaching.
If you are a Gen Y here are some interesting stats about where you are living:
36% of boomerang kids are ages 22-25
28% are 30 plus
27% are 26-30
With more Gen Y’s living at home for economical reasons they do not have the same attitudes that a Zoomer ( a baby boomer who refuses to age) would have had at theirsame age. The Gen Y has an attitude of wanting to do work they love, that they will leave if they do not love their work because they have the security of living at home.
This attitude requires an understanding from employers and leaders that Gen Y’s are looking for work they love, fast progression and accessible technology.
For the Gen Xer who might be living in a multi-generational home they find themselves in the middle of caring for their kids while also caring for their parents or grandparents.
This scenario has created an attitude at work with Gen X that they need flexibility to be able to attend to both their children’s needs and events but also assisting their parents and grandparents with appointments and other needs.
The attitude of Gen X is I need my employer to understand the extra stress I have at home and to be flexible with my scheduling, work from home more often and schedule work around life and family.
Finally for the Zoomers or Baby Boomers having three generations live with them they are likely majorly supporting the other generations in their home financially. This means that the attitude for them is that they will not be retiring as planned because they need the money.
Ultimately more families living under one roof means greater cooperation and tolerance.
As the social fabric shifts and more and more families live together we will continue to see workplace implications that will forever change how we work, why we work and how to work in a workplace that understands the different attitudes of each of the generations.