There is no caliber of person that cannot be managed effectively as long as the ‘box of studying to understand them’ has been checked -millennials inclusive. “You do have to speak to them a little bit like a therapist on television might speak to a patient,” Marian Salzman, president of Euro RSCG Worldwide PR North America, told CBS News. “You can’t be harsh. You cannot tell them you’re disappointed in them. You can’t really ask them to live and breathe the company. Because they’re living and breathing themselves and that keeps them very busy.” That’s on a funny note, of course.
Millennials also known as ‘Generation Y’ are the demographic cohort born in the 1980s to 1990s; after ‘Generation X’. A research forecast has it that by 2020 millennials would be 50% of your workforce. Instead of complaining about what you can refer to as their “excesses” why not seek ways to manage them to the betterment of everyone?
This article would reveal 5 practical and easy ways of managing millennials; gaining maximum benefit and productivity from them.
- Take advantage of their electronic literacy. Millennials were born at the peak and popularity of the electronic age and the Artificial Intelligence. Little wonder why you think they spend almost all the time goofing on their smart phones. But they might just have researched that puzzle you spent hours cracking your brain on- from Google. So instead of nagging at their too much engagement with the electronic world; by which regular usage made them more literate, take advantage of it. You will be impressed by how much results they will record in a short time.
- Don’t squash their ideas. Despite the fact that you as the leader own the vision of the company, you must be open to ideas –from anyone. You would agree with me that ideas evolve, and the ideas with which you founded and built up your company upon, could be getting outdated. So, do not hesitate to get ideas from these millennials; and act on them. They could turn out to be a million dollar idea! Don’t squash their ideas. And of course which better set of people will be more conversant with the happenings in the new millennium than the millennials?
- They cherish the work-life balance. If you want to manage millennials in the workplace, be ready to give them a work-life balance. They will work hard, but not round the clock. They cherish their time and would not want to trade it for anything; especially when they start getting overworked. Majority of them would either loose enthusiasm for the job, or even quit. Ensure to provide them with a work-life balance.
- They perform best in teams. You want to get the best out of them? Then don’t fail to fix them up in teams. Include teamwork in your company’s culture. Reason is, these millennials have been inculcated with the team-spirit right from their schools and colleges; they perform lots of team projects, and as such have the initial conditioning of teamwork than individual work. So harness their network for your productivity.
- Shuffle their tasks. Don’t bore them with stereotype tasks. Change their tasks as often as possible. They like new challenges, get them involved. And when they ask for it, be eager to heed their requests for new or varied roles. And be flexible enough to accommodate their longing for flexibility.
In conclusion, millennials in your workplace may be perceived as wanting to be entitled, lazy and narcissistic but their definition of loyalty, time and success is simply just different from yours. As long as they are result-driven, you have nothing to worry about, than getting to understand them better and leverage on their unique abilities for best results.
Virtue Edoziem is a Content Creator, Research Assistant and Social Media Associate at Talents and Skills Africa Consulting.