How to manage “Millennials”

That is what everyone wants to know isn’t it? How do I motivate, lead and inspire the “millennial’s” of today?

In recruitment we often hear about our clients’ challenges around recruiting, rewarding and retaining “Gen Ys/ Millennials” within their business.

This is the same formula regardless of your industry. This has changed over time, and it is no longer appropriate to implement the “my way or the highway” or “sink or swim” philosophies.

This week I attended a workshop on how best to manage millennials. The guest speaker was Amanda Hector and organised by Captains Table Melbourne.

I thought I would share with you a summary of the tips to success and what I feel can benefit managers of any business:

  1. Set clear expectations for success – It is important to do this from the very start of the candidate’s employment. Be specific with your expectations and the response is more likely to be what you expect.
  2. Onboarding and training – make sure you provide the correct tools for training. People nowadays are used to being able to reach information at the tip of their fingers thanks to Google. Therefore, it is important that you provide an appropriate induction, access to training and the necessary processes/ procedures for success.
  3. What do they need to know to succeed – Millennials are more relationship focused than any other generation. This may be a shock as I often hear phrases like “millennial’s hide behind their computer screens and devices”. Whilst this maybe true, they are more effective with keeping in consistent communication and understanding people.
  4. Keep staff engaged – ask for their opinions so they feel valued within the business, young people will often have great ideas and suggestions for improvements.
  5. Coaching and ongoing feedback – Feedback is best given frequently, timely and informally. This is proven to be great for staff motivation.
  6. Figure out what drives your staff. What would make them loyal to you? This is different and needs to be individualised to each person. We cannot presume that everyone is driven by finances. Many people are motivated more by the ability to work flexible hours or to have the clear pathway to promotion. Surprise, surprise… everyone is different!

Disclaimer: I am a millennial and I am a leader. It was very interesting to hear the perspective of other managers within the industry and the challenges they face surrounding managing young people.

Overall each generation has strengths and weaknesses. Collaboration of the different generations is the best way to maximise your staffing potential. Specifically for Millennials, the best way to manage successfully is to set clear expectations and tailored incentives.