Change within the workplace can disrupt the productive flow and harmony of any business. Generational conflicts are something CEOs are becoming more aware of as millennials flood the workforce in increasing numbers. According to an article in Forbes, “by 2025 three quarters of workers globally will be millennials.”
It is important that we as company leaders recognize the unique perspectives younger generations bring and how that can benefit business. For example, millennials tend to be more clued in to 21st century communication and social media which can be useful for digital marketing and reaching new audiences. In addition to being tech-savvy, they are optimistic, eager to learn and improve, open to feedback and able to multitask.
As employers, the more we recognize and value the potential of millennials, the better we will be able to provide the proper leadership and situations for them to thrive.
Give Them Responsibility
Millennials are enthusiastic about making important decisions. The last thing they want is to feel like a faceless drone in a sea of workers. While a generation that is accustomed to having its voice heard may seem like an entitled generation, I believe managers can benefit from millennials’ desire to be key members of the team. By giving them specific responsibilities and the freedom to find success on their own, employers are putting the ball in their court.
Giving millennials the opportunity to show their merit keeps them engaged and motivated. Employers may also be surprised by the unique viewpoints and fresh ideas a younger generation brings to the table. This new perspective can breathe new life into a company.
Focus on Results
According to a study by the Intelligence Group quoted in Forbes, 74% of millennials want flexible work schedules. The idea of punching a clock and sitting at your assigned desk all day seems stifling to millennials who prefer not to be tied to a 9 to 5 schedule. That is why I focus on the importance of completing projects and hitting deadlines and trust my employees to reach their goals on their own.
While letting your staff work from home everyday may be unrealistic, technology has made working and meeting remotely easily accessible and has the added benefit of breaking up the monotony of the workday. Millennials also want to be able to disconnect when needed because they value establishing a work-life balance. As an employer, promoting a work-life balance prevents burnout and improves focus and productivity.
Many millennials grew up with heavy supervision. Their parents were involved in their education and they had teachers who supported and encouraged them at school. They expect some level of feedback when they enter the workplace. This comes from a place of wanting to improve. They want to know if the work they are doing is acceptable and, if it isn’t, they want to know how to make it better.
Of course we like to see that our employees are eager to improve. Open communication and feedback can bring other benefits as well. It helps employers stay connected to all aspects of the business and keeps us aware of when and where improvements are needed.
Allow Them to Multitask
Millennials excel at multitasking. It is proven that they can take on more than one specific role. This is a skill that employers can use to their advantage. Having employees take on multiple roles can save on costs because you are not hiring a single person for each role. It also makes it easier for someone who knows multiple positions to jump into a new role if need be. Giving millennials a greater understanding of the business through learning multiple aspects can make them feel like they are a part of something bigger and can improve their overall work.
We as CEOs and business leaders need to embrace the new generation by encouraging their strengths and guiding their enthusiasm so they can reach their full potential and be productive members of the workforce.
Have you read?
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Written by: Robert Lee, Co-Founder & CEO Circa Interactive.