Dear Aunty B,
I recently hired two young guys from uni who listen to their iPods, chat online and play games though the day. (I know because comments come up on their screens while I am talking to them!)
We do work in a high pressured environment, and they are doing a good (but not great) job. Kids do their homework while doing all this multimedia. They told me the other day that listening to music helped them concentrate.
Are their brains wired differently to mine? Or should I put my foot down?
Don’t just put your foot down. Stamp it! Really hard! Or else do you know what will happen? Some other employer will inherit these workers and have to break them in for you.
I think all employers should make a pledge. Whoever gets a Gen-Y straight out of uni and finds that Gen-Y has not been work-trained has to take on that difficult task. That means they have to explain why there no iPods at work (they then can’t hear the boss if he or she is yelling.) And there are no computer games because you are not being paid to sit at work and shoot avatars.
I have no objection to staff who work long hours organising their social life from work. But that does not mean chatting to friends all day online. That is distracting. So explain the rules and the reason for them, and do us all a favour!
Your Aunty B.