Share Tweet Ashley, what do you consider typical characteristics of your generation? I think the statement that we’re called “generation why?” is very fitting. We were born in the technology era which allows us to investigate and research information easily. In turn, this has allowed Gen Y to be extremely self-sufficient and also be able to determine what we truly value. Knowing our values has helped us determine which employers will allow us to have a meaningful experience. We want to expand our knowledge and grow personally and professionally. We want to know that we made a difference, somehow. What do you expect from corporate leadership in today’s business world? I expect that corporate leadership needs to recognize that Gen Y will be dominating the workforce in the next few years and in order to keep quality talent for this generation, they must adapt. Leadership styles need to change in order to fit what this generation wants. Participative leadership style is a must because this generation has a voice and they want it to be heard. What engages you most in the workplace and what makes you go the extra mile? Knowing that my employer is investing in me. I don’t want to be another “employee number” on a payroll roster. I want to feel like I’m noticed in the workplace, that my contributions matter, and that my employer truly cares about my professional growth. To believe that your employer cares and invests in you goes a long way with my generation. It increases engagement and loyalty. If my employer proved this to me, all I’d want to do is make them proud by working hard. Generation Y Ashley Lauren Perez, Sourcing Specialist at WilsonHCG. Ashley is American and lives in the United States. What is your preferred way to communicate in the workplace? I like a variety of things. It’s nice to switch it up when the mood strikes. However, I do really enjoy the IM communication systems and workplace social media. It really helps everyone get to know each other, especially in my work environment which is over 90% virtual. I may never get to meet my co-workers but social media lets me get to know them on a personal level and pictures help me put a face to a name/voice. What kind of development opportunities do you expect to be offered by your employer? What excited me about my current employer is the fact that they’re big on helping us figure out what career path we want and helps us know what we need to do to progress to that point. Nothing kills employee engagement more than going into a job and feeling like there’s nowhere to move up (or even laterally). It’s nice to know that your career doesn’t end with the initial position you accept at the beginning of employment. Please complete this sentence: For me, my job is… … my gateway to opportunities in life. My job helps me get knowledge and experience, which will allow me to grow in ways I never could have dreamed of. How does your ideal workplace physically look like? Probably something like the Google or LinkedIn HQ campuses. I love the variety that they have there and also the fact that they celebrate the individual. What are the priorities during this phase of your life? Getting as much experience and industry knowledge as I can. Also, networking is huge for me right now because it helps open up doors for a bright future. How do you balance your personal and professional life? Honestly, a white board calendar and my iPhone calendar. I’ve learned that in order to manage my time efficiently, I need to organize all of my responsibilities. What do you wish your colleagues from other generations would know about Gen Y? Trust us! I know it’s hard to have faith for early careerists but we’re extremely capable as long as you provide feedback and resources. Teach us, be there for us, but then empower us. We can really do impressive things if you let us feel accountable and responsible. Thank you, Ashley, for these valuable insights!