The Ultimate Management Hack For Dealing With the New Generation of Employees
Millennials comprise a huge part of the job market. In fact, according to a report by the Governance Studies at Brookings, by 2025, as much as 75 percent of the workforce will consist of millennials. As a branch manager, team supervisor, or even CEO, this means you’ll likely be hiring and working with at least one millennial in every four employees. Knowing how they are different from other generations is key to effectively managing them and harnessing their true potential. Here are five management hacks that millennials particularly respond to:
This sounds like a no-brainer, but you’d be surprised by how many managers and business owners fail to listen to their employees. This may explain the low rate of employee engagement that has plateaued at around 30 percent. Effective listening skills, however, don’t form overnight. You’ll need to intentionally practice it.
Growing up, millennial employees were raised by caring parents who have structured their lives around the needs and demands of their kids. This is why they grow up with high expectations of being listened to. But it’s not just millennials who want their voices to be heard. Employees in general want good listeners leading the charge.
Millennial employees are looking for new things to do. They are hungry for change and thirsty for new activities and experiences. Making them live the same routine day in and day out can cause them to flee or jump ship thus leading to costly turnovers for your business. This doesn’t necessarily mean you should change things up every day.
Break the weekly rut by instituting casual Fridays where employees can wear casual clothing to work, pizza Thursdays where you order the entire office some pizzas for an afternoon snack, and weekly hackathons where employees get together to compete against each other for some nifty prizes. Whichever tradition you choose to start, make sure that everyone’s on board and that employees are being mentally stimulated.
One of the key characteristics that best define millennials, from a professional standpoint that is, is their ability to multi-task. Talking on the phone while emailing a different client and instant messaging a friend are just normal day-to-day tasks in the work lives of a millennial. Learn how to use these skills to accelerate turnaround times for projects, improve customer service response times, and overall make sure that you’re on top of everything.
Millennials feel more productive when they’ve done a lot of small tasks rather than get stuck with one huge mess of a project. Delegate small but doable tasks to your employees with clearly set deadlines and requirements.
There used to be a time when people simply did their work, came home happily, and then rinse and repeat everything the next day. A large faction of millennials, however, are career-driven and highly ambitious. If they sense that working for you is a dead-end to their career, they’ll probably leave you without hesitation and search for greener pastures. Provide them the assistance they need, such as quality sales training to up their numbers or online courses to expand on their skills.
Money is of course one of the key reasons why people work, but it’s not the primary motivator of certain people, specifically millennials. What catches their attention when perusing job postings online and what motivates them to stay with a company is the attractiveness of the job position itself. Millennials want something that they can be proud to tell their circle of friends and family members. Mobility and the opportunity to network with other people are some other qualities in a job that millennials look for. If this is something you can be flexible with as a business, consider offering it to your employees.
Managing millennials can be tedious due to some of their inherent characteristics of being demanding and unpredictable. But with the right tips for refining your managing skills and adapting to the different workforce circumstances, you can improve your employee retention rate and lower costs from rehiring and retraining.
Kevin Bugielski is the Marketing Manager for Victory Lap, a purpose-driven startup changing the sales game. Avid Snapchatter, SoulCycle lover, newfound runner, but ultimately, a foodie.