Shortage of skilled labour is one main issue of our time and Diversity Management – an answer to central contemporary challenges related to it. Never heard about generation X, Y? Then it’s high time!
Excerpt from an interview with Prof. Martin Klaffke
Prof. Klaffke, against the background of demographic development the term “Diversity Management” is gaining importance. It is part of the public debate whenever it comes to securing needed skilled labour. What is your personal definition of “Diversity Management“?
“Diversity Management” can significantly contribute to controlling demographic change and the related risks in terms of labour economy. “Diversity Management” gives companies the chance to make use of the diversity of employees as a potential for success. But this does also imply the necessity to meet new demands and ideas of employees from different workforce generations.
Considering the obvious multitude of values and attitudes of the different workforce generations, generation management is becoming a central aspect of “Diversity Management”. We must be prepared that due to their small number the younger workforce generations, entering labour market now, will have the power to newly negotiate their working conditions – and they are certainly going to do so.
Generation Management is a focal aspect of your scientific work. What should companies – engineering companies – be prepared for in the future?
There are certainly some special aspects that are particularly true for engineering companies, but basically generation management is a main task for the future of all companies and organisations. At the moment there is a strong discrepancy between what young employees wish for and what working life offers to them. Even though many executives won’t like it, generation management requires a totally new way of thinking from them. They will have to learn to see the world through the eyes of the new generation. Important aspects in this consideration are changes in work-life-balance, professional development opportunities and attractive working conditions for women and men, which are stronger adapted to the private lives of employees.
Read the entire interview in our Customer Magazine. (german only)