In 2016, Millennials (Those born between 1981-1996) overtook boomers as the largest generation within the workforce. You’ve probably worked with or currently work with a Millennial in your office.
As a business owner, you need to know how they work, what satisfies them in the workplace, what attracts them to jobs, etc. in order to attract and maintain them in your workplace.
Hint: There is a little more to it than regularly feeding them avocado-on-toast.
Workplace struggles, and how to overcome them:
According to a Deloitte study, Millennials find it difficult to handle ambiguity. They are uncomfortable with not knowing all the answers and struggle with incomplete information. As a result, there is a need for direct and transparent communication, no lies or ‘fluff’.
If you end a memo with ‘let me know if you have any questions’, you better be ready to answer them.
Another outcome of this is Millennials need for regular and continuous feedback on their performance. Fortunately, feedback and communication can benefit Millennials in more ways than one.
As Millennials are least likely to use cognitive stress coping strategies, they have become the most stressed generation. Providing feedback on how to implement cognitive coping strategies like taking a step back to view the bigger picture and listing alternatives, can help reduce stress and create more productive employees.
High-stress levels within the workplace could contribute to Millennials being the least engaged generation (29%) within the workforce.
Millennials manage stress differently. Unlike other generations, they largely use strategies outside the office to cope with stress. As a result, it is necessary to re-evaluate the need for strict work hours to allow time to recuperate.
Working with Millennials
Millennials are less tolerant of conflict compared to older employees. This may explain why they prefer to work with colleagues of similar strengths rather than diverse strengths. The Deloitte study believes this may be due to fear of the ambiguity that conflict and diversity could create.
This could introduce difficulties if you are trying to diversify your workforce.
Bottom line: Transparent communication is key in overcoming Millennials struggles within the workplace.
According to another study from Deloitte, 49% of Millennials say that, given the opportunity, they would quit their job within the next two years.
The top three reasons for this being:
– Dissatisfaction with pay and financial rewards
– Not enough opportunities to advance
– Lack of learning and development opportunities
A Gallup study had similar findings. Millennials are often overqualified for the jobs they have, these are often jobs that do not require a tertiary degree and provide lower wages.
How do you attract and retain Millennials?
If you’re unsure how to attract Millennials into your workplace, you’re not alone.
Gallup found that leaders are unsure if they are offering the right things to Millennials in the workplace.
The Deloitte study found a correlation between Millennials who plan to stay in their jobs and those who said their company delivers best on financial performance, community impact, talent development and diversity inclusion.
Given that 91% of Millennials feel the opportunity for rapid career progression is one of the most important considerations when looking for employment. it is vital you communicate these opportunities to potential employees.
To attract and retain Millennials you should communicate more than just competitive pay rates. Your value in their career growth, diversity within your workforce and your business’s inclusion in the local community are all key messages that need to be communicated.
Now with a bit more understanding of Millennials, you can attract some of the bright minds that this huge segment of the labour force has to offer!