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How to use the difference between generations in IT companies

People perceive any work in terms of their life experience and their values. The value system is formed in childhood under the influence of economic, social, political, technological factors of the external environment. Therefore, the value systems of people differ depending on the historical period.

From early childhood our brain learns to perceive information, interact with the world around us. To do this, he sets himself patterns of behavior based on basic values. The generation that was born on the Internet and has gained access to any information has already grown. And this factor also had an effect on their brain.

People with different values ​​look at many things differently. The same technology causes them, perhaps, opposite feelings. Why this need to be understood and how to use it – today we will tell in the article about the connection between IT and psychology.

Before the Generation X

Let's get straightened out with the theory of generations. This theory, explaining the difference between the models of behavior of different generations, was formulated by William Strauss and Neil Hove in 1991, and described repetitive generation cycles in US history. Then the theory became widespread in many countries of the world, including in Russia – the values ​​of generations in many countries coincide, which became especially noticeable in the era of the Internet and mobile communications.

Before the generation of X, that is, before the generation of people , Born in different countries from 1965 to 1979, most of the employees had one similar feature: they had the knowledge and experience in one area, they preferred not to change the sphere of activity. In the first half of the 20th century (as well as hundreds of years before) specialists preferred to work in the same position. It is possible that in the USSR such traits of generations were preserved until the late 1980s.

As you know, now one specialist can not only be an expert in various fields. Most often he simply is compelled to have experience in other spheres of activity – otherwise he will be invited to a more "capacious" professional. This does not mean that specialists of a narrow profile completely disappeared. There are a lot of them now, but they do not come to their eyes, they prefer not to risk, they work for the same job for years.

Lack of multitasking and interactivity can become a serious problem in the IT company. On the other hand, representatives of modern generations (beginning with generation X), striving for universality in the approach to knowledge, have a wide range of interests and skills, but do not have really deep knowledge in any one discipline.

Tim Brown, CEO of the famous design company Ideo, prefers to hire employees, which combine both the features of the "old school" generation, and modern trends. We are talking about specialists with deep knowledge in one area, but they are able to switch to a related discipline and to master it well from scratch.

Tim Brown (and with him Procter & Gamble, Nike and others) believes that the employee should be empathic. This is important, because it allows a person to imagine a problem from a different angle – to feel himself in someone else's skin. In addition, the employee should be interested in other specialties, show curiosity and enthusiasm.

What is more valuable, in-depth knowledge in one field or the desire to gain knowledge in different disciplines? HR-specialists come to the conclusion that the most valuable employees have the skills to exchange information and act interdependently. Simply put, the desire to constantly evolve and change is valued.

Generations Y, Z and on

Generation Y, they are millenials, are people born in the interval from 1980 to the beginning of the 2000s. Y has become accustomed to technology, a fast pace of life and new impressions, but their childhood has had a transition period in technology: the emergence of the Internet, mobile communications, the gradual introduction of computer technology. They still remember the time when the digital economy practically did not exist.

Generation Z are today's children born to zero. Childhood of two thousandth children is influenced by very different values ​​- from Youtube, as the main source of knowledge, to obtaining the skills of future work in Minecraft. Yes, they say, today you can learn programming, just playing Minecraft.

Children learn to program in Python, build fantastic worlds or work mechanisms of high complexity. Geomification allows the use of a huge number of child behavior patterns as a basis for teaching programming.

A new generation will soon replace generation Z. According to Strauss theory, the duration of one generation is 20-22 years. Every 20 years a new generation of people appears whose values ​​are fundamentally different from the values ​​of their parents. Our children will appear in the world of 5G, drones, unmanned cars, cybercrime, smart things, crypto and lockblock, 3D printers, incredible scientific discoveries and a new round of space exploration. The theory of Strauss says that we can predict the behavior of children of a new era – the change of generations is cyclical. But the factors of technical progress begin to dominate all the others, which as a result can distort the picture of reality.

What do people of generation Z want to see?

Different generations not only come to the company and Something in them create. They are still customers, users. And everyone has their own requests. Let's consider this moment on an example of interaction with a software.

One of the main differences is that the modern generation (born after 2000) tends to passivity more than the generation that grew up in the 1980s and 90s. Generation of modernity Facebook seems complicated and anachronistic (you need to search and add), and convenient – Tinder, where you only need to copy photos.

Before, people liked to control something, feel their control over the events taking place. And the young user just wants to press the button and get the result.
Changes are also being made to interfaces. Following the logic of "perfect interface is the lack of an interface," programs lose a detailed menu and get control of gestures (in the VSCO application gestures have become the only way to navigate).

The third significant change in software is associated with the growth of information flows. There was too much information. The user must have protection against information overload. Therefore, applications focus on a single function, social networks introduce algorithmic tape, and Snapchat and some other applications themselves destroy user content.

The fourth change is due to the desire to get involved in content creation. Therefore, in every messenger you can create photos, videos, hyphas, drawings and much more, and on the blockade there are platforms in which instead of likes they use monetary encouragement (in crypto currency) for any user action – additional motivation to generate content.

Let's not forget about the most obvious change in the preferences of users – emoticons, emoji, gifki. All ways of communication without words are extremely important. Representatives of the generation Z and, in part, Y do not like communication over the phone, but prefer chats. Of the representatives of generation Z only 38% are ready to communicate with technical support by phone, and 31% do not want to spend at this time and prefer to seek help on various online resources.

How the world affects the brain

Representatives of generation Z more trust games, as to teachers of a life, than to a school system of formation. The very appearance of the first personal computers in the eighties affected the whole generation of children who are versed in computers. Remember yourself. Many began to understand computers, when they themselves did not work at all. We learned to program in BASIC and write our own programs, creating something that previously did not exist in the world.

Modern children have moved on in these skills. No one is surprised by the news about a schoolboy who found VKontakte vulnerability and received two thousand dollars for it. Children write their own programs, while their parents at the same age played in the garden or worked around the house.

The children of generation Y learned from their mistakes. Generation Z communicates with someone who is much older than them and understands something. Through forums, social networks and messengers, children get the opportunity to get help from real professionals. Thus, they quickly gain new knowledge, learn faster and use information quickly in practice.
According to a study by ChildWise, a representative of Generation Z uses a computer, a tablet, a smartphone and a game console every day. Any passion for technology has an impact on his career.

Researcher Cal Newport followed how stable work is losing popularity. Newport analyzed the data of the English-language press for 20 years. It is noticeable how the popularity of references to "a stable career" is falling and the popularity of "fulfilling career" is growing.

The new generation appreciates mobility, it is much easier to change the place of work or even the country of residence. The big world of new technologies has such an impact that from early childhood we have to learn to analyze large amounts of information, look for new original solutions, work with several tasks simultaneously.

This attitude towards the world causes rejection of a tough type of leadership. Employees belonging to the transition period between the generations of Y and Z can afford to criticize leadership and question the need to build a hierarchical structure.

There is a good example of a company in which the values ​​of generation Z are built into the absolute – this is Valve, in Which has no hierarchy and no formal management, superiors and subordinates, positions and career growth. Valve has no fixed roles, and each employee has the right to decide what he should do and where he can bring the maximum benefit to the company. Such a system has its disadvantages (if employees lose interest in a program, they simply stop doing it regardless of the users' desires), but the impressive financial results of the company speak about the effectiveness of the approach – Valve's profit from the sales of games in 2016 was 3, 5 billion dollars.

And the criticism of the approach

It will be an error to divide all people into categories, to drive into rigid frameworks of behavioral stereotypes, to label them. A prejudiced attitude towards people, an estimation only by age and belonging to a stratum, ultimately, only harms. Even a hipster that matches all your social prejudices can surprise you with your personal qualities.

Certain features of the generation that allow us to segment the mass of people should be taken into account, but the theory of generations should not be taken as the only true guide to action.

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