Human Resource

Why Gen-Y is in Crisis

Generation Y or the Gen-Y refers to the generation of people born during the 1980s and early 1990s -> And that’s me included!

While many always perceive that Gen-Y kids are rebellious, Gen-Y employees are hard to manage; we as Gen-Y think that we are proud to be the trouble-causing Gen-Y!

And now, we are in deep trouble, no doubt.

Firstly, we are no where more experienced or superior than the baby boomers nor the Gen-X. Either they manage us or they fund us in our start-ups. We are still learning from and leaning on them.

Then, here comes the Gen-Z, those born during late 1990s and early 2010s. They are literally born with iPads and stuff – they are called the digital natives. Technology industry booms with them, including the spectacles industry I presume. They are growing up faster than we thought. The Gen-X feed them and educate them well, too well.

They are better looking (or is it the camera that is getting better?), they are smarter, they act faster, and they are more competitive than us, the Gen-Y. They are probably seen as the “strawberry generation 草莓族 ” but, prickly. They possess a new set of challenge for us. Don’t you ever wonder why the Gen-Z girls are getting taller and better in shape? All of their selfies are prettier and almost flawless? Most of them get a Gen-Y boyfriend?! Even their babies are born ahead of ours! I’m not complaining but hey, did anyone else notice that?

The point is, if the Gen-Y still live in their arrogance shade, thinking that this is their era, soon they are going to be thrown out by the Gen-Z. This is no longer an era about linear hierarchy or generation superiority.


Gosh, I’m going to sleep first and worry tomorrow. Gen-Y.


Strange Things about Gen Y

Besides having a peculiar way of thinking and seeing things, Gen Y is kind of sensitive too.

They like to be given responsibilities and they get motivated when you have high trust in them completing their tasks. But when you start to take away their “beloved” responsibilities from them, that’s when their pride get torn and they start to seek new challenges else where.

They will feel incompetent at first, then they will somehow be able to recover the motivation and start afresh, doing new things that they like.

They are quite individualistic for their own achievement, yet they like to collaborate and help others whom they think worth sharing. They learn fast from seniors, observing their behaviors  and results, then decide to keep or to avoid those kind of behaviors.

Gen Y are competitive against their peers. While they won’t try to kill each other, they want to be better. Thus, they always seek a new arena which could train them better.

This is Gen Y workforce. They are not as hard to manage as you think. They are not unreasonable nor demanding. They are just being cultivated that way to face the challenges of globalization and management of baby boomers and Gen X.

Fast Deal – How Customer Services Affect That

So, another free advertisement post from a satisfied customer.

Last Sunday, my friend and I were rushing for a movie called “Blackhat” (*Shriek* OMG LEE HOM!). It was 11.30am when we reached Vivocity, finding our way to GV – 11.45am, dropping by a few fashion outlets – 12pm, found GV – 12.10pm, deciding which movie to watch (hesitate between Blackhat and Theory of Everything, no way. Lee Hom – first priority) – 12.20pm, bought our tickets – 12.25pm. Next, deciding what’s for lunch.

Well, it was a quick agreement that we were going for Sushi Tei but looked at the queue, we were not going to make it for Blackhat! So we turned back and strolled around a few restaurants. We stopped by a Thai restaurant which I didn’t bother to look at the restaurant name. There was no queue – great! It was 12.35pm.

The first question that we asked the receptionist was, “how long must we wait to be served our food? We want to catch a movie at 1.15pm”. The girl said they could try to expedite the dishes for us but was uncertain whether they could meet our time frame. But seeing this pair of “hesitating customers”, her manager came forward swiftly to assist her. He assured us that they could serve us food as soon as possible although it depends on which dishes we order. He also quickly make a few suggestions of dishes that could be served fast. Pineapple rice was on the suggestion list so we agreed.

We were ushered to a nice seat and we made our order. It was 12.40pm. We were speechless as my friend wasn’t really happy about all the rush. Opps, sorry. 😡 The silence seemed like forever until the pineapple rice arrived, followed by the mango sticky rice. It was 12.43pm. We had our food without talking much. Haha, then it was 12.55pm. I wasn’t just eating my food. I was busy observing how the restaurant is being run. And yes, I forgot to snap photos of my food! Urgh.

The Pineapple rice did look like this! Stole this pic from their website :x

The Pineapple rice did look like this! Stole this pic from their website 😡

A waiter took orders then keyed in orders. Another waiter served the food, then received another order. On the way, that waiter noted someone who wanted to get the bill. Another waiter (I think they call the managers “in charge” or something) came out with the bill. That first waiter cleared some plates. A customer raised hand at the waiter, another waiter noted and came over. (Yeah, that was me asking for my bill) The whole process was so fluent and you see no waiter avoided eye contact with any customers.

This is what I called COLLABORATIVE, PROACTIVE employees. It was a well-trained culture, embedded in each of the employee – from the receptionist to the chef (I assume, just look at the speed of cooking my pineapple rice).

Within 20 minutes, they earned our money, freed up the seats and ready to serve more customers. Fast deal. Sometimes, when you see a long queue in a restaurant, it doesn’t represent how nice the food or how popular the restaurant is (may be, it’s just famous for the queue). May be, it simply shows how slow their processes are. I could name a few such restaurants but that’s not the point here.

I didn’t take note of the restaurant name until I find the services satisfying. From now on, I will remember this restaurant name for good reasons. However, if I were to leave the restaurant, feeling angry, disappointed ,and dissatisfied, I would have remembered the restaurant name as well – a reminder that I shall never ever step into it again.

All right, back to this experience. So, I guess you know which restaurant I meant. Tadaaaa, it’s the nice nice Thai Accent! And their tagline is “Hospitality with a Heart“. How true is that. Kudos to the manager named Hong Tai (hopefully I get your name right). With nice interior and nice food is not enough. Nice staff is still the most important factor in getting your customers and raising your profit. (Hopefully I can get a chance to interview their management team eh?)

hospitality with a heart by thai accent

Hospitality with a Heart!

thai accent at vivocity

Nice interior! Photo credit: Thai Accent website.

And the last thing we said before we leave the restaurant? “Let’s come back here again some time to enjoy the good food slowly!” =D

Happy satisfied customers come back and promote for you.

Project Covalent – Introduction

Disclaimer: No guarantee that I will continue this post but yah, blogging is a good way to collect my thoughts!

Covalent is a scientific term describing the chemical bonds formed when atoms share electrons to form a stable compound. Each atom by itself may or may not be useful but when it forms bonds with other atoms (which may not be of the same kind of element), it becomes something useful in our daily lives. Look at carbon and diamond. A precious diamond is a result of covalent bond of carbon atoms. The bond that is formed is so strong that it would need a large amount of energy to break it.

diamond covalent bond

If we see this in the context of an organization, where each employee is like an atom, a covalent bond is formed when the employees share their “electrons” or rather the knowledge, skill sets, and expertise that they possess. They form “compounds” or teams with infinite possibilities. The teams formed are diverse, dynamic yet stable, and with strong bonds. Imagine an employee with good project management skill; he could bring his “electrons” anywhere with him to form the covalent bond with another employee with say, good marketing skill. Together with some other employees with other skill sets, they could form a team that would ensure a product is launched perfectly to the market on time. Then this employee could bring his “electrons” to form covalent bond with another employee who is so passionate about research and development. They could again form a team that would give birth to new innovations. In this diverse organization of ours, imagine how many covalent bonds we could form and how many high performing teams we could anticipate.

icon of collaboration among people

We always talk about breaking the silos in an organization. But how exactly can we do that? Silos are inevitable, and they are sometimes formed so naturally that we do not notice. We all have our personal interests and priorities. It is difficult not to have the mindset that when someone is ahead of us, we are at the behind. So if I lend you a hand to push you to the front of me, I am behind you. But we should not just confine our perspective to what is in front and what is behind us while ignoring the bigger relativity. Remember, as an organization, when someone moves ahead of us, the organization moves as well; when we push someone forward, we push the organization forward too. The force is conserved. However that person may not always be running in front of us. There will certainly be times when someone else, including that person whom we helped before, may give us a push forward. Again, the organization is moving forward. If we could keep such dynamic, can you imagine how far we can go?
Having said that, if our people hide behind the silos wall and deny the ability to give someone else a push, how can we move forward? Perhaps, we should all push and demolish the wall of silos? Will that create more commotions and halt the organization movement? Alternatively, we want our people to stand up, to stand out from the silos and say, “Hey, I can do this, I can do that. If you ever encounter an issue regarding this and that, come and look for me!” We want them to stand out from the silos and say, “Help! We need someone with such expertise, can anyone help us?” We do not want experts to be confined within silos and similarly we do not want problems and failures to be kept in the silos.
the problems with silos
We want to build a culture – where our people are proactively sharing while learning and supporting each other. That would naturally break the silos and foster strong collaboration among our people. We know where to find resources, we know who to look for advices, we know what we can help… and we let others know as well. With that, teams will be performing better than ever before. Organization could move forward faster than ever before. The bond stays strong and it keeps on growing as new healthy blood are injected (let’s talk about new blood injection – or talent attraction, next time) and integrated well into the existing system.