Differences in work motives across generations in the workforce: The case of Cyprus University of Technology (C.U.T)
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Generational diversity at the workplace is a major issue for managers, since generations may differ in terms of work motives and other characteristics. Knowing what is most important to each generation in an organization is crucial information to Human Resource management, whose goals (among others) is to develop effective motivational strategies for all employees. By applying and experimenting with past and new methodologies, organizations succeeded or failed in keeping their employees engaged and motivated in their work environment throughout their employment. The situation in the public sector tends to differ though, as here, in spite of job security, other factors such as saturated organizational cultures, engagement and motivation approaches, tend to negatively impact the employees’ psychology and will to perform up to an organization’s standards. This is where the matter of generational differences among the public servants fits in, as different age groups may require different approaches in being kept interested in their jobs, other than the feeling of a secure job and a steady income; a subject of study less explored with little literature available to HR management. Additionally, addressing generational differences will critically aid organizations in overcoming factors that negatively affect their internal environment, and most importantly, the achievement of goals and future vision. The purpose of this research is to explore the relationship between multigenerational workforces and employee motivation within the Cyprus University of Technology (C.U.T). More specifically, it aims to identify the main motivational drivers for C.U.T’s employees, whether those significantly vary across the different age groups, and based on the findings, make suggestions to the HR management on how to enhance employees’ job engagement and consequently, motivation. By implementing a quantitative research design, primary data was collected through an online survey focusing on C.U.T’s administrative personnel. The data was analysed using various statistical measures, formal hypothesis testing, and regression analysis. Results showed that significant differences do exist among the two major generations of C.U.T’s employees (Generation X and Millennials), and while some motivational factors positively affect one generation, at the same time they may negatively affect or not be as important to the other.