There has been much talk about the millennial generation because of their huge numbers – 80 million in the US alone – and their unique characteristics. When compared to the other generations, they have attracted the most attention in the workforce. However, the main differentiator between Generation Y with all the other Generations is their internet use.
The millennial generation expects so much from their jobs than just a paycheck to make ends meet. Given that they are well educated (by their baby boomers parents who worked all their lives to see them excel in school), highly skilled in technology, have loads of energy and can multi-task, they have very high expectation of themselves and what they do for life.
How then can you capitalize on above traits to grow your business? Here are four unique defining characteristics of millennia’s as employees;-
They have a Social Mindset
Being digital natives, they grew up with the internet. They would rather watch a movie on You tube and Tweet the afternoon away than watch TV. This exposure means that they have no borders; they are self-aware and aware of what is happening around the world.
The social mindset also means that they are open minded to change as long as it is in line with their values and convictions. They are willing to volunteer and support social causes.
They also easily accept diversity and tolerate each other’s differences and attitudes. It makes it easy for them to work in teams and still perform well.
They Thrive on Performance Feedback
Generation Y employees thrive on constant feedback. They prefer getting the feedback immediately as opposed to at the quarterly or annual appraisal meeting. As a manager, you need to ensure that you give your millennial employees frequent and immediate feedback.
As you think about feedback, you can incorporate things like checklists to help them perform better. This generation likes knowing that what they are doing is adding value to the company and by providing them with a checklist, will help them realize that. Think about mentorship too as they are hands on and want to learn as much as they can without getting bored.
The bottom line is, the way you deliver the feedback should keep them motivated, and you will enjoy business success working with a highly motivated Millennial team. The motivation should be from the senior management down to their immediate supervisor.
They Need Strong Engagement
As mentioned above, Generation Y is very hands on and get bored quickly if they don’t stay inspired to work. By engaging them, you will eliminate the above issues and have a vibrant team of dedicated employees.
Tips on how you can fulfill the engagement need
- Provide career advancement opportunities based on performance that will motivate them to work harder and smarter and therefore, earn the promotion.
- Provide learning and development opportunities- this can be in the form of training, coaching or mentorship.
- Provide Corporate Social Responsibility. They like contributing to the society and allowing them to participate in CSR, will help them meet the needs of the communities around them, and also fulfill the need of doing meaningful work.
- Provide work-life balance. They believe that they need to balance work and life, therefore, create that for them. For example, have flexible schedules.
- Create an environment that contributes positively to their health and well- being. Such a space will engage them, and thus they will look forward to coming to work.
Engage the millennial employees and you will experience success and business growth.
They Work Well in Teams
The Millennial employees work well in teams not individually. The feeling of togetherness or doing something collectively gives them the energy to accomplish it. Your role, therefore, is to create a team-oriented culture.
In a contact center, it is easy to create a team-oriented culture because they have to work in teams for them to meet the set targets.
In conclusion, the millennial is a special generation because they will form 80% of the work force in a few years. Understanding some of their defining characteristics like them having a social mindset, thriving on performance feedback, needing strong engagement and working well in teams will keep your employees happy, leading to low turnover.