Maximizing Millennials in the Workplace
By Tom McClung, Ph.D.
How are Millennials impacting your workplace? If you don’t employ any today, you will soon. Millennials, born between 1980 and 2000, represent 80 million people—the largest generation in history.
These younger workers generally are found to be ambitious, educated, impatient, family-oriented, global in their perspective and technologically savvy. When managed well, Millennials bring many positive attributes to your business.
Four critical things you need to know about your Millennial employees:
- They are committed to making a difference, and they want to be heard.
- They prefer electronic communication and want to attend fewer meetings.
- Their ideal work schedule offers them flexibility beyond the traditional 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. workday. Remote access makes it possible for them to perform their job functions at different times of day and from a variety of locations.
- They want a balance between family and work.
Like your other employees, Millennials need encouragement to focus on the broader goals of the company and its core values. At the same time, it is important for managers to recognize each generation may need to be managed differently.
Five key characteristics to help you effectively manage your Millennial employees:
- They want to be respected and accepted for their knowledge and skills. They do not want to be seen as being “less effective” or “inexperienced.”
- They do not respond well to the “command and control” style. They prefer a more collaborative work environment, with flexibility in ways to achieve results.
- Additional time off, versus a bonus, is generally their preferred way of being rewarded for good work performance.
- They perform best in an environment where they feel challenged. They like constant feedback from their superiors about their work performance.
- Due to their global focus, they respect diversity in the workforce and function well in a diverse workforce.