The lifestyle of these digital natives is very different than the generations that came before them, which can lead to conflicts and misunderstandings in the hiring process and at work.
Pre-employment testing can help identify some of the personality traits that Millennials exhibit and help you understand what to expect about working with younger employees.
To add to those insights, here are some additional suggestions for how to work best with Millennials and other young members of your team.
Working in teams is second nature to Millennials after years of group projects in school. Take advantage of this by paring younger workers together on collaborative projects or establishing mentor relationships with older employees.
Setting up younger workers with an older mentor provides a great opportunity for each generation to learn from the other. An older employee can learn about the latest technology while a Millennial can learn how to form business relationships and make difficult decisions.
A formalized mentor program is also a great thing to list on your organization’s recruiting strategy and will help you stand out from the crowd in an increasingly competitive job market.
This is the generation that grew up idolizing Mark Zuckerberg, Elon Musk, and other Silicon Valley superstars. Everyone thinks they can be an innovator, no matter where they work or what their role is within an organization.
Rather than pushing back against this, embrace it. Give your younger team members time and space to innovate when it makes sense to do so. You never know what ideas might come from a fresh perspective or someone who is willing to challenge the status quo.
Pre-employment testing can help you determine how much of an entrepreneurial spirit a candidate has so you can structure your relationship accordingly. Depending on your organization, you might even consider adding entrepreneurship to your checklist of things to look for in a candidate.
Despite stereotypes to the contrary, many Millennials are ambitious and goal-oriented. They know what they want to accomplish professionally and are looking for a roadmap to help get there. You can use this to your advantage by making sure your organization serves as a key stepping stone on that path toward success.
A little extra investment in professional development will go a long way with this group. Allow them to build skills that will be useful to your organization and wherever else their career path may lead. This generation does not expect to be in a job forever and is always looking to improve the skills that help them now and in their next position.
Transparency and Authenticity
In a generation that shares everything on social media, transparency and authenticity are critically important. They know that life is not always perfect and can tell perhaps better than any other generation when the wool is being pulled over their eyes.
Think twice before you make a statement to a Millennial that you can’t back up, especially if it’s something that can be verified online. If they think something is awry, the will find the truth and be heading for the door before you know what happened.
But, if you can be transparent and authentic, you’ll quickly build trust and earn affinity that will help boost your reputation among other potential hires. Remember that this generation is more connected than ever before and will not hesitate to lift up or knock down your organization in their networks.
A final thing to note about Millennials is that the lines between work and home blurrier than the ever have been. This generation is constantly connected and does not mind answering emails on the weekend or staying late if a project requires a little extra time.
However, this also means they are more likely to spend time on non-work activities during traditional work hours. From spending time on social media to working on their personal brands, younger employees expect to do work on their own terms.
Millennials make up 1/3 of the workforce currently, and with that number expected to grow, flexible working schedules will quickly become the expectation for all employees, rather than the exception. A little work now to adjust your business operations will pay off in the long run.