The world is changing at a breakneck pace, and leading the charge are members of a population segment knows as the millennials, aka Generation Y. They were born between 1980 and 2000, and by 2020, they’re projected to make up 50 percent of the global workforce. As we speak, 75 million millennials are preparing to launch their careers.
Who Are These Millennials?
Unlike previous generations, millennials have grown up with doting parents, busy and structured lives, and ongoing contact with diverse people. The most connected generation in history, they are constantly communicating, networking and multitasking. Millennials are:
- Used to working in teams. They’re social beings who want to develop relationships and make friends at work. They have a “can do” attitude and interact well with diverse colleagues.
- Used to balancing multiple activities. They seek leadership and structure, but expect that you’ll draw out and respect their ideas. Millennials look for frequent feedback on how they’re doing. They want a variety of tasks and expect to accomplish every one.
- Passionate about work-life balance. As they schedule myriad responsibilities and activities, millennials demand flexibility and a life away from work. In everything they do, they’re awaiting their next challenge. It had better be there, or they’ll find it somewhere else.
- Natural techies. Millennials were born into the Internet age and cut their teeth on computer technology, starting in preschool or earlier. They’ve grown up with constantly evolving online, mobile, cloud and social media developments – and they embrace each one with vigor, easily melding it into their bustling lives and busy days.
Tips for “Millennial Management”
Phew! Generation Y is going to keep you on your toes. This poses great promise and much excitement for the future of your business, as long as you’re ready for these highly desirable candidates. If you make them happy in a fun yet structured setting, you’ll build the foundation for a superior workforce. Here are tips for managing millennials:
- Invest in your new employees. Research consistently shows that millennials rate career growth and professional development as their top engagement factors. Don’t just drop them into their job with no clear structure. Keep in touch with them and make sure they’re assigned enough, but not too much, challenging work.
- Listen to them. Millennials are used to helicopter parents who scheduled their lives around the activities and events of their children. As a result, they have strong opinions and don’t like to be ignored.
- Provide frequent feedback. This active listening is a two-way street. Waiting until annual review time to praise or critique probably won’t cut it. Millennials want more frequent – even daily – feedback on their performance and your expectations. Provide this input in real time, highlighting positive contributions and improvements in key competencies.
- Clearly communicate benefits. For instance, millennials have been shown to be largely disengaged in managing their healthcare. Your HR team will have to work harder to educate them about these and other benefits. Consider digital and mobile tools with user-friendly interfaces and access points. This will make key information easier for members of Gen Y to understand and use.
The recruitment and workforce development experts at Contemporary Personnel Staffing & Professionals Incorporated can help you as you attract, develop, engage and retain your millennial workforce and successfully transfer knowledge among multiple generations within your workforce. Contact us today at 315-457-2500 or firstname.lastname@example.org to learn more.