By 2025 the generation of Millennials will account for 75% of workforce on the market including Software Developers. The question arises: are the organizations worldwide ready to effectively manage them? Considering the studies showing that the level of employee engagement is currently at the lowest level ever, while the number of the Y-ers entering the labour market rises the answer seems to be pretty straight forward: no.
The topic is not new and has been discussed in media for a while now. There were already hundreds of papers or articles published: on how to motivate the young, how to manage them, what are the best incentives, what to tell and what better not. Unfortunately,
not only have very few companies embraced the change or adapted any of the suggested solutions, but also Millennials have become to be infamous as a demanding, ungrateful and difficult group of employees. This is very wrong.
We should start perceiving Millennials as just different, not bad. The world has changed so much in the last 30 years, and so have the people. Employers should embrace the Y-generation and adapt to them, just as they have adapted to inventions such as the Internet, mobile phones or crisis economy.
What is the best strategy to manage the Y’ers then? Here are the 3 tips that any organization should consider in their human resources strategy to build real competitive advantage as an employer and as a company itself.
Let them learn
Studies show that “personal growth possibilities” is the top 1 priority when choosing an employer for almost 60% of Millennials. Do you, as an employer, respect that? Remember that growth possibilities do not only mean one training every 6 months; you need to help a young person have a realistic, achievable and exciting plan of where they can be within your company in the next 1, 2 and 5 years. Without a plan and opportunities, no Millennial is going to stay with you for longer. Money won’t help here in the long run. A great article by Jeff Gothelf describes how organisations will have to change to accommodate increased learning expectations on the part of their workforce.
Let them collaborate
Millennials are social animals and much more effective within a group. How do you let them satisfy this very basic need? Again, a corporate party once a year is not the answer here. Build them a friendly environment, in which collaboration will be supported. How about special rooms for brainstorming and developing ideas, and a nice chillout room where they can just hang out, not wanting to run away after exactly 8 hours? Consider combining collaboration with point 1): how can you enable your employees to learn from each other?
Let them feel empowered
True that: telling a 25-year old that they have to do X in a way Y is not going to work in the long run. Might for a while, but then this person will go to a place when they can be real owners of what they do. Maybe they don’t have to if you as an employer start to trust them and let them have full control and responsibility over a certain part of work just offering support if needed? You might be positively surprised with great results delivered, so it is worth a shot. It seems to be working perfectly well for Hubspot.
What are your ideas about managing the Millennials? Please share your experience with us!
Bring Agile to the Whole Organization – Jeff Gothelf
Two Things Employers Must Do To Survive in the Experience Economy – Jason Averbook
Management through Inspiration – Brad Coffey