According to a survey conducted by Atlantic Associates, 53 percent of managers agreed that the millennial generation is the toughest to manage. The tech-savvy, outspoken millennial generation gets a bad rap (we didn’t all receive participation trophies growing up, okay?!) but, if properly managed and led, the millennials in your office can be a huge asset to your team.
Millennials are now the largest generation represented in the workforce; by 2020, millennials will make up 50 percent of the workforce. It’s in your best interest to learn how to vibe with your millennial employees because, let’s face it, they’re not going anywhere anytime soon. Want to learn how best to manage the millennials in your office? Read on to find out how to motivate your millennials and ensure harmony on your team regardless of generational differences.
Team Them Up
Millennials grew up surrounded by technology and are accustomed to constantly socializing with their peers. Therefore, millennials perform well when grouped with their like-minded peers. Team up your millennials on projects and watch them flourish together.
Millennials are all about flexibility; in fact, 75 percent of millennials want flexibility that also keeps them on the promotion track. Throwing down a hard-and-fast rule is a surefire way to make a millennial bristle. The millennials in your office want to see that you’re open-minded to new ideas and new ways of doing things.
As Ian Siegel, co-founder and CEO of ZipRecruiter noted, “One thing I’ve learned from my younger employees is that radical transparency about the business can bridge the understanding gap between them and older generations in the workplace. Not only does this transparency engender a stronger connection, but it motivates individuals to pursue the business’s goals.” Keep it real with your millennials and watch their ambition grow.
Listen to Their Ideas
On par with their appreciation for feeling valued and their need for guidance, millennials want to feel that their ideas are taken seriously. Often ambitious and frequently innovative, thanks to the “think-outside-the-box” mindset that defines the generation, your millennial employees can be a huge asset if you simply listen to their input and take them seriously.
Give Them an Experience
Unlike the Gen Xers before them, millennials value experience over ownership of possessions. Roughly 78 percent of millennials would choose to spend money on an experience or event over buying something desirable. Yes, millennials still want to be paid (we can only handle so many unpaid internships before the weight of our student loan debt begins to be felt), but compensation is not their utmost concern.
Rather, millennials want to feel valued and included; they want to gain experience and contribute to the larger strategy and goals of the business. If you listen to your millennials and make them feel involved, they will perform at a higher level because you are giving them the experience they so desire.
Millennials have gotten a bad reputation over the years. Millennials have been portrayed as entitled and lazy, but contrary to popular belief, millennials are actually well-educated, adaptable, ambitious and flexible. As millennials slowly begin to take over the workforce, it is important to learn how to properly manage them and encourage growth by working with their work style rather than against it.