By: Eric Ronan, Practice Manager– El Segundo, CA
Right now, across the United States, 70,000,000 millennials are joining the workforce. In 2015, millennials became the largest percentile of the working force. Despite what you may read about millennials in the news (millennials are destroying everything!) they are both a highly desired and sought after group. However, in order to attract and retain these employees, you must provide them with an exciting, yet structured setting. This can then build the foundation for the outstanding workforce you desire.
Here’s a couple tips to keep in mind when marketing to them and explaining why your company is the right fit for them.
Work-life Balance. Provide a job, benefits and work space that allows for a work-life balance. Millennials are used to packing their daily lives with multiple activities. They play on sports teams, participate in philanthropic activities, love happy hours, want to stay in shape, want to travel the world and spend lots of time with their family and friends. They want to work hard, but most are not willing to work the sixty – seventy hour work weeks defined by the earlier generations. They want to maximize the time they spend working and use their remaining time one as many things they are passionate or interested in as possible.
Leadership & Guidance. Provide them with as much leadership and guidance as possible. Millennials want to look up to you, learn from you and receive feedback constantly. They want in on the whole picture and to know the scoop. Plan to spend a lot of time coaching and mentoring. Be aware of this obligation to millennials when you hire them. They warrant and desire your best efforts and time to help them succeed.
Teamwork. Stress the value of teamwork. Most millennials grew up with ice breaking, team-based activities so they are used to working in groups and teams. This is different than the independent, self-reliant attitude of earlier generations. Most millennials believe a team can accomplish more and better results than just an individual.
Structure. Give them a structured yet flexible schedule. Define assignments and success factors. Millennials don’t need to be boxed in, but they do need direction.
Listen. Genuinely try to listen Your millennial employees are used to caring parents or mentors who have scheduled their lives around the activities and events of their offspring. They have ideas and opinions and don’t like to have their ideas and opinions ignored.
Millennial Employees Are Up for a Challenge & Change. Boring is bad. They seek ever-changing tasks within their work. “What’s happening next” is their mantra. Don’t bore them, ignore them, or trivialize their contribution.
Self-assuredness, “Can-do” Attitude, & Positive Personal Self-image. Millennials have been told they can do anything and go anywhere. Their families, parents and mentors told them they can do it—and they can. Cheer them on! Don’t crush their hopes or dreams or try to contain them. They want to provide input and ideas so encourage them to voice their thoughts and opinions.
Millennial Can Multi-task. Multiple tasks don’t phase Millennials. They can talk on the phone while writing an email, watching a stream of Netflix on their computer and eating Hot Cheetos. They can Instagram while answering multiple instant message. This is a way of life now for most millennials because their attention spans are much smaller than previous generations due to the advancements in technology, the 24/7 news cycle and social media. In fact, without multiple challenging tasks, millennials will likely experience boredom and lose motivation easily.
Computer, Cell Phone, & Electronic Literacy. The electronic capabilities of millennials are impressive. They grew up on computers and were given cell phone from an early age. Use this to your advantage; allow them to use technology to accomplish their goals and your business goals.
Networking. Allow them to use their social skills because they want to. Millennials are not just comfortable with teams and group activities, but they like to network around the world electronically. Keep this in mind because they can post their resume electronically as well on web job boards viewed by millions of employers. They intermingle on sites such as Facebook and LinkedIn and rate your company at Glassdoor.com. Sought after employees, they are loyal, but they keep their options open—always.
The Workplace. Provide a fun, employee-centered workplace. Millennials want to enjoy like the place they go to work and would be open to spending more time their given the environment you create. They want to make friends in their workplace. You should worry if your millennial employees aren’t laughing, going out with co-workers for lunch or are open to helping plan the next company event. Help your long-term employees make room for the millennials.