2016 Diversity Leadership Summit

By: Various
Mar 04, 2016
Diversity Leadership Panel
The 2016 Diversity Leadership Summit featured professional panelists exploring topics including “Generational Differences in the Workplace.” (Panther photo by Jessica Hunter)

Technology creates workplace gaps, expert says

By AUDREY ANCHIRINAH
Managers of Comfort Inns & Suites and Sodexo spoke to students about generational differences in the workplace on March 22 during the 2016 Diversity Leadership Summit.
The session was part of a day and half of panel discussions, networking opportunities for faculty and students, as well as resume reviews and mock interviews.
“Technology is the biggest thing I found being in different workplaces,” said Meaghan Crowley, director of HR for Sodexo, regarding generational differences. She specifies the various generations, which include presently the millennial, baby boomers and others.
She said technology creates a gap between the generations, especially when it the tech-savvy millennials. “Trying to catch up with you guys,” Crowley said.
The panellists also talked about the various stereotypes associated with the generations: Baby boomers have been described as old-fashioned and close-minded while the millennials have been described as lazy, immature and want everything handed to them on a silver platter.
“Pay attention to details,” said Ana Wilson, general manager of Comfort Inns & Suites in relation to preparing resumes and applying for internships or jobs.
She said that if you follow instructions, you are going to be considered. But if you do not meet the requirements, the resume goes into the no pile.
“I think this generation is intelligent, so savvy,” Wilson said. She said it takes time for other generations to adapt to the current generation.
“You have to work together to get there,” said Wilson about differences in the way of working and processing information. She advised students not to be afraid of asking questions and to be willing to learn.
Another point touched by the panelists was negotiating salaries.
“Do your homework; find out what the average wage is for the region in which you’re trying to secure a position,” Crowley said. “Understand the geo-differences.” (i.e. jobs varying depending geographical region).
She said students should not their sights too high nor too low. She advised women to have the courage to negotiate as women historically have been paid less compared to men.
“Don’t let your fears hold you back,” said Wilson as she gave tips on how to ace an interview. She also said that in an interview one should be a little selfish and market unique skills.
The panelists gave tips on how to overcome weaknesses as well.
They echoed similar last remarks: Expectations are different in each generation but it’s important to adapt and work together.

Fearing for their jobs 

By JESSICA HUNTER
The 2016 Diversity Leadership Summit  at Claflin explored topics including “Generational Differences in the Workplace.”
A panel of professionals discussed various challenges the multiple generations in the workplace face today. These include:
·         Technology differences

·         Pay differences

·         Illegal interview questions

With technology differences, “the older generations fear the younger generation will take their jobs,” the panel said. “The millennial generation has a fresh perspective and new eyes of viewing things on the job.”
The panel encouraged students not to be afraid to discuss their pay. They encouraged them to do their homework on the job as well as research demographic salary averages to discuss higher pay.
The panelists especially encouraged this for the women in being aware of lower salaries because of their sex.
They also encouraged the millennial generation to be aware of illegal interview questions and not be persuaded to answer personal questions that don’t have anything to do with the job. They referenced questions such as family details, marriage status, husband and wife’s job, anything too personal.
Dr. Robin Davis, as assistant professor of management in the Claflin business department, referenced how her mentor told her to remember the acronym SLL, which means “Stop. Listen. Learn.”
With the acronym, Davis encouraged all generations to stop, listen and learn in every situation on the job and in life.
The two-day summit allowed executives to speak with students about their companies and share current hiring practices and job expectations. The day-and-a-half event featured panel discussions, networking opportunities for faculty and students, as well as resume reviews and mock interviews.

The importance of networking

By TARRYN DELYONS
You are a student your whole life and you never stop learning, two corporate officials told Claflin students during the 2016 Diversity Leadership Summit’s session on generational differences in the workplace.
They offered advice on joining the workplace of today.
There are multiple questions people ask themselves in life about where they are trying to go. The two panelists gave multiple solutions on what to do and how to get there.
“You need to truly prove yourself to earn the jobs that you’re looking for,” Lisa Campbell of Scana Corp. said.
People also need to work together to get there, and you cannot always do certain tasks alone. 
“Whatever you put on your resume determines where you go from there.” Campbell said.
Another important rule is to ask questions about what you should do. Never be afraid to ask questions, advised Campbell and Sodexo’s Meghan Crowley.
Campbell said one of the key elements to getting a job is to negotiate wages.
“Don’t be afraid to ask about the wages,” Campbell said.
If they are offering you the middle yard of the wage, take the middle. Do not go too high or they probably won’t take you.
“Stand up, know the history regarding the wages, and negotiate,” Campbell said.
Both women talked about how they grew up in the baby-boomer age and how everything is easier for this generation. Most important is technology. This generation has it easier in getting the work done.
Crowley said she actually appreciates growing up in the baby-boomer age because communication was face to face.
“Face-to-face communication is actually better. It builds on your communication skills,” Crowley said.
She also talked about how people do not know how to properly communicate physically because technology took over their lives. People are constantly on their phones or computers and they can conduct numerous business deals through technology.
“Don’t let your fears hold you back.” Crowley said.
Crowley said students should build their communication skills while they are still in school because it is different when you are actually in the real world.
Also while students are in school, they should volunteer to help build their resumes.
Both speakers said volunteering builds leadership skills and teaches interaction with people.
Volunteering also gives the opportunity to tackle projects, which shows you can be a leader.
“Exuding confidence is the greatest thing you should have,” Campbell said.
The summit allows executives to speak with students about their companies and share current hiring practices and job expectations. The day-and-a-half event on March 21 and 22 featured panel discussions, networking opportunities for faculty and students, as well as resume reviews and mock interviews.
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