4 Generations in One Work Force: Which Employee Benefits Satisfy Them All?

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For the first time in American history, employers face the challenge of providing benefits to a work force spanning four generations: Generations X and Y, Baby Boomers, and the Mature -- sometimes called the Silent -- Generation.

However, each generation has its own definition of flexibility.

For the first time in American history, employers face the challenge of providing benefits to a work force spanning four generations: Generations X and Y, Baby Boomers, and the Mature -- sometimes called the Silent -- Generation.

X-ers like to text, Boomers like to meet in person. Y-ers are used to talking, typing, and surfing simultaneously. Matures prefer to address one task at a time.

When it comes to understanding how employees view their careers, you could say younger employees work to live and older people live to work. Generations X and Y saw their parents lose jobs despite years of dedication, leading them to be less trustful of employers. Matures who remember the end of the Depression and the difficult war years know what it's like to live within limited means: They are committed and hard-working.

Employers and benefits brokers are left to wonder how one set of employee benefits can satisfy these diverse groups. Minnesota Life's group insurance division offers guidance in its paper, "The new face of the American workforce," which profiles the four generations and analyzes them in terms of their job-related preferences.

"Regardless of age, today's employees want flexibility," says Paula Bilitz, group life marketing director, Minnesota Life. "However, each generation has its own definition of flexibility."

For Matures, it may be the flexibility to take time off to care for an ailing spouse; some boomers may want to slowly phase out of full-time work to retirement; for the younger generations, it's having time to focus on their lives away from work. The paper explains how to determine which benefits are meaningful to all generations within an employee group while achieving the employer's goals of satisfying employees, reducing health care and disability expenses, improving productivity, and attracting and retaining good employees.

"The new face of the American workforce" is available at no charge on Minnesota Life's LifeBenefits web site: https://web1.lifebenefits.com/lb/pdfs/F62382-22%20Get%20More%2014.pdf. It is one of a series of white papers the company offers to employers, benefits brokers, and consultants that offer insight about choosing the right mix of benefits while remaining competitive and keeping costs down.

With $655 billion of life insurance in force as of June 30, 2009, Minnesota Life Insurance Co. is one of the nation's top ten group life insurers. Respondents to customer surveys are 100 percent satisfied with the service they receive from Minnesota Life group insurance, giving the company the exceptional Net Promoter® Score of 87 percent. For more information about web-based services offered by Minnesota Life's group insurance unit, a subsidiary of Securian Financial Group, visit LifeBenefits.com.

Contact: Maggie Jensen, APR, 651-665-7558

This press release was distributed through eMediawire by Human Resources Marketer (HR Marketer: http://www.HRmarketer.com) on behalf of the company listed above.

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Paula Bilitz
Minnesota Life
651-665-4916
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