Multigenerational workplace performance: Generational similarities and differences in employee perception of the work environment

by Bell, Edith E., Ph.D., CAPELLA UNIVERSITY, 2008, 251 pages; 3296639


Literature suggests limited understanding and information exist regarding generation-defined employee groups and their perceptions of the work environment, regarding how these work environment perceptions influence behavior, and regarding how these perceptions and influenced behaviors affect human performance systems. In addition, literature offers limited analysis of each generational cohort’s characteristics and work environment perceptions to determine the most effective interventions to improve individual and organizational performance within the multigenerational workplace. Literature on human performance technology suggests that practitioners should consider these factors when selecting and designing performance improvement interventions.

This study was significant for four reasons. Human performance is an essential component of organizational performance. Employee perception influences behavior and performance. The twenty-first century workforce is composed of individuals from multiple generations. Diversity of values likely affects the level of respect, communication, and interaction among employees; thus, influencing organizational and individual performance. Two questions directed line of inquiry for this quantitative study. To what extent can four distinct generations of employees in a twenty-first century workplace be differentiated by their perceptions of the work environment? Which environmental variables could significantly influence selection and design of effective interventions for generational cohorts in a small business work setting?

This study offers implications for intervention selection especially from the multigenerational workforce perspective. Assessment of environmental support helps to determine how employees perceive the operation of environmental variables in the work environment, and their influence on performance. Effect size ([special characters omitted]) of each environmental variable could help to determine whether a statistically significant difference between generational cohorts translates into enough of a variation to justify designing interventions geared toward meeting individual needs of each generation.

AdviserPaul O. Hardt
Source TypeDissertation
SubjectsManagement; Adult education
Publication Number3296639

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