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Creating an Employee Feedback Culture in a Multi-Generational Workforce

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Performance reviews, employee feedback and people development topics are hotter than ever. These are probably some of the most critical challenges that HR professionals have to tackle and solve. These challenges are driving the generational transition in the workforce that is now quickly becoming a reality.

This transition in workforce demographics also comes with a brand-new set of expectations from employees, mainly from Gen Y, more commonly known as Millennials.

As if the pressure of a new workforce isn’t enough, there is also a high need for skills training, challenges with engagement and productivity, as well as the desire for better employee experiences. Taking all this into consideration, what then is holding HR back from creating more meaningful ways of working to engage across generations?

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Meaningful ways to engage each generation


This generation is a small population of the workforce due to reaching retirement age; however, they still require their unique type of feedback. Traditionalists thrive off public recognition, responsibility and acknowledgement of their accomplishments. They believe in the traditional organisational hierarchy and may have a difficult time participating in performance reviews. They look for feedback in a non-conversational way, like being invited to a meeting.

Related: How to Build Your Ideal Performance Culture

Baby Boomers

Like their previous generation, Baby Boomers also respond well to public feedback of their excellent work. Feedback is essential for them to feel like they are in control and doing their job correctly. The key to providing Baby Boomer feedback is ensuring that there is a documentation process to go along with it. Any constructive feedback must seem like an opportunity for growth, and they enjoy team feedback. If you lack providing your Baby Boomers with feedback, they will take a non-verbal cue and turn it into something which could not be perceived positively.

Gen X

Gex X is a generation that thrives off their contributions to the organisation, and therefore, their feedback should reflect that desire & need. They are also a generation who crave ongoing praise fro their boss due to their experience of the need to compete in the workforce. It is also important to note that Gen X is the first generation who requested feedback, yet they tend to ask very cautiously. Since they also thrive off of constant learning, trying providing their input in a manner that allows them to grow and develop. If you do not deliver on providing feedback, Gen X will tend to begin to look for other opportunities or fill the void with negative thoughts.


Also known as Gen Y, Millennials crave feedback and positive reinforcement more than any other generation. They often need proper direction to ensure the right message is being received and don’t need meetings for feedback sessions. They are also a generation who will provide feedback while also receiving it. Millennial managers are not particularly skilled in providing feedback, so coaching and training should be in place. If they lack feedback, a Millennial will assume everything is okay and will continue working how they are so if there is an issue, address it.

Related: 7 Best Ways to Provide Employee Feedback

Gen Z

Gen Z is the newest generation to the workforce, but that makes them far from the shyest. This generation wants multiple check-ins with their manager throughout the week and hopes to interact with their boss at least daily. This generation is done with formal reviews and feels more comfortable with quick, regular feedback sessions rather than quarterly reviews. Since they have grown up surrounded by tech, a platform to provide these check-ins would be best to suit their needs.

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In order to engage and mobilise a new and diverse workforce, you will need learning and training
capabilities that are only one click away from performance reviews and feedback. In other words, a solution that “speaks” to a full employee experience A-Z. One that eliminates your point solutions to simplify your and your colleagues lives.

We invite you to begin a conversation with us. We are passionate about building better performance management solutions and have real, hands-on experiences to share with you. Our goal is to be helpful to you as you explore the best ways and options to succeed.

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