Sodexo has launched an employee network to raise awareness of generational differences in the workplace. The Generations network is a group of multi-generational employees who are focusing on the diverse age range of Sodexo's staff.
The United Nations categorises the working age population into four generations, each of whom has a different expectation and experience of the workplace: Traditionalists, Baby Boomers, Generation X, and Generation Y.
Sodexo's Generations network supports employees in understanding the personal and professional development needs of these groups and how they are affected by each other. To mark its launch, the network devised the GenMatch Game, an informal way for Sodexo employees to start learning about the different generations and each other's experiences. Around 2000 sets of the GenMatch Game are being delivered to Sodexo teams across the UK and Ireland.
Generations is one of six areas Sodexo is focusing on as part of its approach to diversity and inclusion. It becomes Sodexo's second employee network after Women Work, started in 2008, which strives to achieve gender balance in the business.
Sean Haley, managing director of service operations and executive sponsor of the Generations network, said: “Sodexo employs and serves a broad spectrum of people in a diverse range of workplaces such as stadia, prisons, hospitals, schools, universities, barracks, and offices. It's important we recognise everyone's background and values to help us give our employees a rewarding career and support them in delivering the best service to our clients and customers. Our latest employee engagement scores are very positive and 12 points above the national average, but results do reflect a wider, external trend which shows employees in their twenties are the least engaged. The first priorities of the Generations network will be to understand why this difference exists, and to explore how we can encourage the different generations to learn from one another. As many of our employees are based on a diverse range of client sites, the GenMatch Game has been designed in a short format to be played in a relaxed environment to get people talking and thinking about the differences in the four generational groups.”