Who are the Millennials?

The administrative assistant with a Master’s degree was led to believe there would be advancement opportunities and she would receive better pay over time. Yet after working at the law firm for less than a year, she was growing impatient. There was no promotion or discussion of a raise. Her comments were ignored and she found other employment. She also relished the chance for an exit interview, so she could tell management why she was leaving! Yes, she is a Millennial.

Born between 1980 and 2000 (there are some variations in dates), Millennials have surpassed the Baby Boomers in number and are now the largest generational group in the U.S. workplace. They don’t place a high value on long-term employment commitments, if the company culture doesn’t satisfy their quest for meaningful work. Yet millennials will work hard and be significant contributors in an environment that recognizes and rewards their strengths.

Why are they important?

Millennials now make up almost 50% of the U.S. work population, and will grow to 75% by 2025, significantly impacting companies as they move into leadership roles. In addition to dominating the work population, their work styles can conflict with traditionally structured companies. And because standard perks have proven insufficient in attracting and keeping Millennials, learning new ways to attract and retain employees has become a crucial aspect of running a business.

What makes Millennials a challenge?

New strategies are needed to assure companies have the talent needed to accomplish business goals. Millennials have an entrepreneurial work style and a desire to make a difference, along with a need for growth opportunities and flexible working conditions. That has prompted companies to take a new look at benefits and other retention programs to keep positions filled. Businesses that have had the most success from the knowledge and skills of Millennials are adapting and embracing some of the changes that many Millennials are advocating.

How can you address the challenges?

Listening to the fresh ideas of Millennials will result in the kind of company culture that will benefit everyone, attract like-minded new employees and improve your bottom line. While Millennials like to share, they may hesitate in doing so directly with company management. However, a neutral, trusted outsider, like Maximizing Millennials, can cut through office politics to get the answers company leaders need to improve culture and get Millennials to stick around.

For fun – a couple one minute Millennial sketches
from Saturday Night Live.

Click on the image to view.