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Aleksandra Maria Czajka, Who Is The Founder Of InnerGap.com. Aleksandra Is Originally From Poland And Currently Based In The US.

Generation Y Aleksandra Maria Czajka, who is the founder of InnerGap.com. Aleksandra is originally from Poland and currently based in the US.

Aleksandra, what do you consider typical characteristics of your generation?
The most typical characteristic of generation Y is agility. You could be smart and agile or a dummy and agile, but agility is a must for generation Y. Our generation has both smarties and dummies, perhaps a little more of the latter than of the former, however, I believe we are judged for that latter group and, as a result, agility is seen more as an attention deficit disorder in our generation. I believe this is a mistake, however, because being smart and agile gives us the ability to carry out the right decisions and change them quickly while adapting to the changing world, or market for that matter. The dummies give agility, and our generation, a bad name.

What do you expect from corporate leadership in today’s business world?
Corporate leadership should be able to wear many hats in this day and age. It should be very agile; able to adapt, not just in a particular decision, but, to multiple different environments. It should be able to thrive, assess quickly and give direction in a multitude of different scenarios. In addition, modern leaders should do this with a smile. They should be personable, likable and open minded. Otherwise, no one will want to work with or for them. They should be able to have a conversation and connect with anyone.

What engages you most in the workplace and what makes you go the extra mile?
My passion is technology and building a business with strong core values in place. Being a founder, I am able to carry out operations to the best of my character, a task which has been impossible in organizations that do not have the organizations best interests in mind and instead focus on making the owner as rich as operationally possible. This is not how a successful operation is run in Gen Y. We tend to focus on the core missions and on the values of the business. We believe that focusing on those vs. focusing on making a profit will, in the end, benefit our core business. What makes me go the extra 20 miles is the ability to influence the organization’s mission and values.

What is your preferred way to communicate in the workplace?
My preferred way to communicate is instant messenger. I find it actually more suitable for the workplace. It is speedy and gets right to the point. This doesn’t mean that I don’t love to communicate with people face to face. I love human interaction. However, IM allows me to focus on work efficiently and save the face-to-face interactions for when we’re not pressed for time. It allows us to enjoy those face-to-face interactions even more.

What kind of development opportunities do you expect to be offered by your employer?
Previously, in organizations that I have worked for, I did not expect any development opportunities. I did not ever think that my career would be progressed by climbing the ladder or that I would be handed the opportunity to progress. I expected to be the one that leads my career and determines where it goes.

Please complete this sentence: For me, my job is…
… my passion!

Who has had the biggest influence on your career and why?
The biggest influence on my career has been a mentor of mine whom is a CEO of multiple companies in the UK. I won’t name names, but, he has been very critical of my processes, at every stage, no matter how good they were. Providing relentless criticism has helped me strive to be better and better and reach higher and higher.

What are the priorities during this phase of your life?
My priorities right now are building a thriving business.

How do you balance your personal and professional life?
My personal life doesn’t have a clear cut separation between my professional life. I like to keep it that way. I do not like to feel like I have a split of interests in my life. That concept has always reminded me of a multi-personality disorder, which is not a desirable concept. And so, I like to mold the two. That way, my priorities are always clear. My focus is constantly maintained.

What do you wish your colleagues from other generations would know about Gen Y?
I wish colleagues from other generations would understand that it’s not that we have short attention spans. It’s not that we can’t maintain focus on one thing. It’s that we see the increasing technology available to us as enabling us to speed up our efficiency. We do, as well as all other generations, believe that human communication is essential for the prosperity of business. However, we expect an understanding that certain things can be done more efficiently without face-to-face communication. In essence, to be able to communicate efficiently via our emails and our IMs, we need that understanding from other generations that we are not replacing this with face-to-face communication. If we don’t have this understanding, breakdown of communication will ensue as we would ultimately be taken as rude.

Thank you, Aleksandra, for these valuable insights!

About the author

Lisa Mangelsdorf

I confess that I work to live rather than live to work. But when I can combine my passions into my work, I work best. This blog brings together discussions about one of my passions which is connecting people. I endeavour to fight the norm by chasing flexible working options and change seekers, hence my involvement with this blog. I'm fortunate to be connected with a global team at GAIA Insights. Retaining Gen Y within the workforce is an issue for most businesses across the globe. For help contact us because we know EXACTLY what they want from the workplace and we can help your business retain that key talent.

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