It’s official. According to a survey by the HR Director website, 32% of managers consider Millennials the most difficult group to manage in the workplace. It’s probably something HR practitioners have suspected for some time.
But with an estimated 56 million Millennial-aged (born 1981-96) workers worldwide – and counting – it’s a demographic that demands HR’s attention. So how do you engage and get the most out of your Millennial talent?
Here are five things to consider when managing that challenging demographic.
Pre-boarding is the new on-boarding
One of HR’s biggest challenge when managing new Millennial hires is to make the onboarding process smooth and illuminating. So organisations need to act as soon as an employee is hired. This is called the pre-boarding phase.
Millennials want to feel like they’re part of a community and want to create strong bonds with their colleagues and managers. Pre-boarding is the ideal way to achieve this.
The first step can be to invite these new hires to join the organisation’s employee communications platform and encourage them to start sharing content. Another good idea is to assign them a buddy prior to their start date to answer questions about the organisation’s vision, culture and dress code.
Being the first generation to grow up in the digital age, Millennials are regarded as an impatient lot – looking for instant gratification.
This pattern of impatience can also be seen in the way Millennials communicate in the workplace – they expect communications to be in real time and don’t want to wait for days, let alone hours, for a response.
The same goes for feedback. Millennials demand timely, transparent communications so that they can make the necessary improvements to become more efficient and effective in their roles.
A sense of purpose
Millennials are idealistic in all aspects of their lives, including their career choices. Personal fulfillment is important to them.
One way that employers can nurture this is to get creative with the company’s online platform – using it to foster a sense of shared purpose. Activities could include learning and development content, celebrating team and individual achievements and motivating and incentivising improved performance.
An increased sense of satisfaction through a more meaningful and engaging experience will meant the organisation is more likely to keep its Millennial talent – a generation with a reputation for job hopping.
The social network
Millennials are social animals and take great deal of satisfaction through sharing their experiences, accomplishments, thoughts and feelings across social media. A total of 46 percent of HR professionals surveyed stated that their Millennial employees want an employee communications platform with a similar functionality and experience to their after-hour social media networks.
Work-life balance is very high on the list of Millennials’ priorities. They don’t measure success based on climbing the corporate ladder. Success is defined by having a sense of control over and how engaged they are with their workplace – while being able to savour life experiences that truly matter.