Millennials, a generation scorned by some and celebrated by others. Regardless of how you feel about millennials, business statistics tell us that in the next 10 years 75% of the global workforce will be made up of this generation. I know some of you just shuddered in your seat, but I have great news! Millennials aren’t lazy or spoiled, but simply misunderstood. This is a generation that defies contemporary logic about what motivates workers, not one without ambition or passion.
For decades money has been the driving force for many workers; Employees sought raises, promotions, and titles. However, Millennials think differently than their older counterparts. I’m not saying they will work for free, but they typically value something above money…PURPOSE. It is a sense of mission that drives millennials to show up on time, stay late, and put in the hours to get the job done. This generation wants to be a part of something meaningful and it’s when they feel their work has no meaning that they check out. This knowledge is key to motivating millennials, because taking time to foster their sense of impact and innovation can make them some of your top producers.
Here are a few concepts you can focus on to better motivate the millennials on your staff:
1. Millennials want to make a difference.
The Millennials on your team probably strive to make the world a better place. They want their work to make the world more innovative, compassionate, sustainable, and happier. I know not every job does this directly, but I would estimate that with the right perspective you can frame any job to accomplish one of those goals. This leads me to the next concept…
2. Millennials want to be connected.
This concept is extremely important for getting the best out of your millennials. They want to know that they are part of a team or company with vision. Recognizing your millennials and reminding them how important their contributions are to the team’s overall mission goes a long way in motivating them to do their best.
3. Millennials care about your company’s core values.
For years a company could simply put their mission statement on a plaque or paint their core values on a wall, but modern companies have to demonstrate their core beliefs. Millennials are watching to see if their companies are who they say they are. They want to work in a place that implements its core values and mission. When they see this, it will dramatically increase their loyalty to the company.
4. Millennials need feedback. This point shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone, because all employees need feedback. However, millennials thrive off consistent feedback. Remember, many of them are relatively new in the professional world. Feedback lets them know what they are doing right and where they can improve. It is also a great time to recognize their contributions to the larger vision of the company.
For the next few weeks I will be writing about Millennials, from my perspective as a millennial and from the perspective of some of Centennial’s leadership (GenX and Baby Boomers). Regardless of the lens, the theme will be how to manage, lead, and ultimately utilize the millennials on your staff. I would love to answer some of YOUR QUESTIONS about how to LEAD MILLENIALS. So ask away in the comments box below or tweet to us @centennialinc. The millennial workforce is coming, let’s lead them!