Much has been said and written about Millennials, however, we found that most companies were not able to anticipate the new challenges, not being today prepared to captivate, integrate, develop and ensure that they remain “engaged”. With this generation in the current center of the job market, it becomes increasingly important to find a way to manage talent and find ways of working that motivate employees, as well as prepare them for the new mindset that they bring to companies. Remember! The first millennials, now over 30 years old, are already reaching the top and taking leadership positions, promoting significant changes in the ecosystem of companies. It's time to carry out the changes that lead to excellent results.
Millennials and the Job Market
Millennials are currently over 40% of the working population and in 3 short years, in 2025 they will constitute 75% of the working population. It is of utmost importance that companies manage to motivate and develop these workers, leveraging their strengths and managing to retain them longer, as this will mean financial gains at various levels (more productivity, more efficiency, less employee rotation costs…) .
This is the generation that has more training, that seeks to be more involved in decisions, that wants to quickly assume leadership roles, wants greater flexibility and greater freedom to learn and develop. It is a generation that wants to make its own choices and, above all, a generation that is not willing to wait.
Being very confident and open to change, it wants to contribute positively to results and ensure benefits associated with its development, seeking agility in reacting to change. Statistics show that this generation only stays between 2 and 3 years in a function/company, which means that on average they will have about 20 jobs during their working life, building what is called a “portfolio career”.
The constant development and learning of new skills is critical, so that these professionals can remain professionally active and able to respond to new realities that arise. For these reasons, companies have to find another way of dealing with millennials, more appropriate and oriented to this generation and, consequently, also more effective in meeting the way this generation wants to be in life and involve in the Society.
Create an attractive culture for the millennial employee
To motivate and retain Millennials, companies need to create a strong culture where openness, transparency and collaboration are active values and where managers exercise inspiring leadership by clearly establishing the vision, why and meaning of what they do.
This generation wants to believe that it contributes to creating a better world, and that there is a reason for being in this company other than just the salary. In fact, according to a study by Bentley University, 84% of Millennials indicate that making a difference in the world is more important than a salary.
Companies must also identify the needs and facilitate this learning. Specific, short-term training and certifications will increasingly be the trend, so that these multitasking employees can actively contribute at a professional level and feel that they can make a difference.
We are facing a clear cultural transformation, in which everyone has a catalytic role in this process, according to their vision, skills, experience and life expectations, recognizing that multiple generations are guided by different goals and aspirations. It's not about changing millennials, it's about working on developing current leaders so that they themselves are creative in building a relationship that works both ways. Statistics show that contrary to popular belief, Millennials are open to learning from others, with 75% wanting a mentor who imparts wisdom and business tricks that they can't get otherwise.
The challenges of a millennial culture
The first big challenge for organizations happens with recruitment, through the way companies manage to captivate and ensure the creation of positive experiences at work. This challenge remains in the pre-integration phases and in the future management of their careers, assuming that we should be able to help millennials take ownership of their future, ensuring high levels of satisfaction and loyalty.
It is also very important to create flexible work environments and policies, allowing to manage the balance between work and personal life, since for Millennials the results are the most important (and not the working hours). A Flexjobs study showed that more than 80% of Millennials ponder how a job will affect their work-life balance before accepting any position.
In this sense, regular monitoring by managers, with more frequent feedback (a study by the Harvard Business Review showed that unlike older generations who prefer quarterly feedback, Millennials prefer to receive feedback on a monthly basis), ensures that employees are motivated and aligned with the company's objectives. They are not interested in managers to lead, but rather to be coaches/mentors who actively listen to them, identify development opportunities and establish plans for learning new skills that enable evolution and progression in the company.
Millennials have also changed from employees to entrepreneurs and leaders, forcing companies to rethink their management and talent retention models. After all, the emotional benefits are highly valued by this generation. As complementary challenges, companies are developing solid and diversified training programs, investing in coaching and mentoring and implementing a culture of pragmatism, with the necessary flexibility to incorporate the individual goals of each employee.
How to motivate Millennials at work?
The presence of Millennials in companies is unavoidable. They have to adapt to this reality, and create conditions to get the best out of the opportunities that are created there has to be the new mindset of those who are in charge of the business. Working with a generation for which purpose, flexibility and constant development are fundamental brings new challenges, but there are solutions. Developing a culture of Leadership through Coaching, enabling internal Coaching and Mentoring, and the planning and design of new training strategies based on the constant development of new skills and the creation of experiential learning opportunities are a must!
And remember! If companies do not have the capacity and level of commitment to understand the specificity of millennials, as well as that of each of the five different generations that today collaborate in the same job market, their ability to respond to the different needs and with this will compromise their ability to compete in the job market.