Millennials will make up 36 percent of the workforce by 2014 and 46 percent by 2020. If you’re looking to build a strong foundation for your company in the form of entry-level and Millennial employees, you’ve got to be prepared to ensure your fresh hires thrive with effective management techniques catered to their generational quirks.
The workplace mixing pot is slowly transforming. There are now three solid generations making up the workforce — all of which have very different interests, needs, and requirements for more effective management. All negative stereotypes aside, the highly ambitious nature of Millennials means they’re armed with more experience and unique perspectives than the generations that came before them.
When it comes to managing Millennials, you get what you give. Here are five tips to give your Millennial management practices a much-needed transformation:
1. Get flexible. With 81 percent of Millennials interested in making their own hours at work, being open to flexibility is a must when it comes to recruiting, hiring, managing and retaining Generation Y. It’s time to throw out your ideas of employees being tethered to their desks at the standard working hours.
Happiness and motivation will come through offering all of your employees, not just Millennials, the ability to tweak their hours to better meet their needs. Consider giving them flextime to allow them to decide when they arrive and leave the office based on a core period of time in which they’re required to make an appearance. You can also establish a telecommuting policy for your employees to work from home on the days when they need to accommodate a busy schedule.
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2. Keep the feedback flowing. Millennials need more than the standard annual performance review. In fact, 80 percent of surveyed Millennials said they would prefer to receive feedback in real time. Open up a two-way chain of communication by scheduling bi-weekly meetings with your Millennial employees to dish out feedback and also open the door to a variety of pressing questions.
While this generation craves flexibility, they also require a level of structure. By developing a give-and-take communicative relationship, you will create a more cohesive working environment where they’ll be willing to not only work harder, but achieve more in the long run.
3. Guide them. With ambition and drive to boot, Millennials are the perfect candidates for mentorship programs. This generation also values guidance and strong personal relationships — two things which establish the perfect environment for mentorship. Give your entry-level hiring a boost by establishing a mentorship program within your company. Pair Millennial workers with wiser generations to allow them to gain a new perspective on their career while also creating a level of reverse mentorship. Mentors will gain the Millennial perspective while also having a chance to share their many success stories and challenges. This will bring your employees together to learn from each other and improve productivity and personal growth.
4. Recognize both the positives and negatives. Just like their interest in constant feedback, Millennials’ drive and passion for their careers is fueled through recognition. Use your regular feedback meetings as a time to recognize both positive and negative elements of their work. Recognition can come in a variety of forms, but it’s best to think outside of the box to give your Millennial employees a little something extra — raises, promotions and rewards do the trick for grand accomplishments.
5. Help them grow. With their keen sense of direction and interest in navigating a career, Millennials have made name for themselves in their job-hopping tendencies. Rather than being faced with Millennial turnover, give your employees the opportunity to grow professionally as a part of your company. While your employees may already participate in basic skills and leadership training, give them something more to look forward to by allowing them to suggest what areas they’re interested in improving. Consider investing in new training programs, allowing your employees to cross-train in other departments and positions, and cover the tab as they attend seminars, conferences, and other training-focused events.
Test out which management practices work best for your Millennial workforce. Use these tips to give them the experience of a lifetime!
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