What Values do Millennials Bring to the Workplace?
The following piece was provided to me by clikcktime.com. The full article can be accessed at https://www.clicktime.com/blog/millennials-in-the-workplace-why-you-should-love-them. I have taken the liberty of adding some of my own thoughts.
These days, you can’t scan the interwebs without reading how different these darn millennials are. Lazy. Demanding. Requiring instant gratification. Hand-holding. Trophies for everyone. Hard to manage. Unlike everyone who’s ever worked before them.
Well, we’re not here to weigh in on that debate. Because you know what? Too bad. Love ‘em or leave ‘em, if you need a workforce (and we’re guessing you do), you know who’s in your candidate pool? Millennials. You know what else? Millennials are now old enough to be starting – even running! – their own companies.
As with generations before them, Millennials bring a different skill set to the table and have different expectations about the kind of organizations they choose to work for. Often, Millennials look for jobs in an organization that is committed to “green” issues and social entrepreneurship. This makes them unique with respect to past generations that may have focused first on the values of an organization and second on the mission.
So, instead of bemoaning their quirks, why not use what Millennials bring? Why not take all of those Millennials’ supposed difficulties and flip them on their heads? Why not embrace these peculiarities, using them to improve your business?
Millennials in the Workplace Crave Flexible Work Schedules
Above all, it seems Millennials like their flexibility. They’re happy to do the work, but they don’t like to be constrained to a 9 to 5 schedule. So why make them? Unless your business is one that involves inherent time restrictions (like you have foreign clients with whom you need to communicate in person), why not simply evaluate your employees on the quality of their work? Studies do show that when people work from home, they get more productive.
Provide Regular Feedback
Unlike older workers, Millennials like to know how they’re doing. Most Millennials say they’d prefer way more check-ins with their bosses than they get now. They want to be able to make needed changes or, perhaps, gain knowledge about whether they are valued as employees. Performance reviews can get finicky, but effective feedback leads to actionable and valuable insights.
Make People’s Jobs Matter
Most of us want our jobs to feel purposeful. The difference is that Millennials in the workplace are less willing to accept work that doesn’t feel like it matters.
Here’s an idea: let employees know how their jobs fit into your business’ wider mission. If you don’t have a mission statement, draft one! Figure out how your organization does good in the world and emphasize that. Millennials have different motivational factors compared to previous generations. Make sure everyone feels like they’re a part of something bigger.
Utilize Social Media
If there’s anything Millennials in the workplace know about, it’s social media. It’s been a part of their lives for as long as they can remember, and they’re expert users. Millennials’ expertise can be used to build a future client base. Learn what those folks pay attention to, and what they don’t. Figure out – before it’s too late! – how to generate a real social media presence.
Change Things Up
Distracted, inveterate multi-taskers, unable to focus: we’ve all heard these descriptions. It may be true: Millennials are less interested in simply working on one thing. However, changing things up keeps them fresh and enhances their desire to add value through their work.
Embrace new technologies that Millennials love. Let your employees stretch: force them to learn new skills, or to tackle new kinds of projects, or to practice doing slightly different jobs. This keeps your workplace exciting, and, ultimately, gives you more coverage for any one task.
Attracting and retaining Millennials requires more of a personal touch than with previous generations. Millennials want to know you will value their ideas, provide opportunities for growth and development, and be flexible about their work hours and in using social media. Those organizations that learn these lessons will thrive going forward.
Blog posted by Steven Mintz, aka Ethics Sage, on April 17, 2018. Visit my website and sign up for my Newsletter.
I acknowledge the original piece that can be accessed at: https://www.clicktime.com/blog/millennials-in-the-workplace-why-you-should-love-them.