Managing age diversity in Singapore SMEs : exploring employees' perceptions towards younger and older workers.
Ng, Vivian Shi Ying.
Low, Angela Hui Qing.
Yue, Samantha Si Min.
Date of Issue2009
College of Business (Nanyang Business School)
Purpose – The purpose of this research is to examine the perceptions younger and older workers have of each other in Singapore Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs). Sufficiency of age diversity programs in these organizations was also examined. Design/methodology – The approach used in this paper was a mixed method research design, whereby we conducted both semi-structured interviews and surveys. Survey findings were used to complement our interview findings. Findings – The main finding of this study is that younger/older workers show no preference working with each other, despite the differences perceived to exist between them. Overall, they view each other positively and are not against working with each other. Practical implications – Our research has addressed currents gaps in the understanding of age diversity in smaller firms like SMEs. Findings from both parts of the study provide SMEs’ owners with useful empirical data on how their workers think and thereby increase their understanding of these workers. In this way, SMEs will be in a better position to compete with larger MNCs. Originality/value – This research acts as a stepping stone for future research about how to better manage age diversity in SMEs. The perceptions gathered will aid owners in understanding their younger and older employees better. Also, the recommendations sought in the second part of the study will allow owners to get a better sense of how to better manage age diversity in their companies.
Final Year Project (FYP)
Nanyang Technological University