Each generation of workers comes with their own set of unique skills and perspectives. Understanding your employees and utilizing their individual strengths will not only help your growing business to succeed, but also boost office morale.
Millennials—the term for the generation of young adults born between the early ‘80s and late ‘90s—now account for over one-third of American workers. In many ways, millennials are unlike members of preceding generations. Their worldview has been shaped in an age of booming technology and economic uncertainty. These generational differences have sometimes caused misunderstandings in the workplace. Many businesses, however, realize the potential that millennials possess and are working to harness their unique strengths.
Here are some ways to appeal to millennials and take advantage of the distinct skills they offer:
- Encourage open communication. Millennials value a collaborative work environment. By treating your employees as working with you, rather than for you, you can increase communication and make your employees feel valued and heard. Also, be open to new suggestions for your business—millennials appreciate having a say in shaping the company they work for.
- Provide opportunities for growth. According to the U.S. Department of Labor, the average tenure for millennial employees is less than three years—much less than the average 10 years for baby boomers. Millennials are also more likely to change jobs if they don’t feel they are growing or benefiting from their current position. Give opportunities for your employees to grow, not only with promotions but with learning experiences. Millennials want to feel they are making a difference, so give them opportunities to assist in significant roles.
- Embrace technology. Millennials were raised alongside a growing technology industry and a wealth of information available to them online. By embracing technology from an early age, millennials learned to be efficient problem solvers and critical thinkers. Adapting your business to embrace the latest technologies can help all your employees be more productive—not just the millennials.
Making small adjustments to the culture and structure of your business can help your employees thrive. Create a place where millennials want to work and you can establish greater workplace loyalty and enjoyment for everyone, not just millennials.
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