October 12, 2019
Here's How You Can Engage Your Millennial Employees!
Millennial employees are the most blessed.
Ask any baby boomer about millennial employees; they will almost immediately tell you that millennial employees are the most blessed kids on the block.
Geographies don't matter here. Be it America, Australia, or India or for that matter any country – the baby boomers tell the same about millennial employees.
Even gender no matter. There is a possibility that everyone will agree with no hesitation that millennial employee is the most blessed.
Similarly, industries no matter. Whether it is manufacturing or services or any industry, the chance is that the opinion of the baby boomers is one and same on millennial employees. They all echo the fact millennial employee is the most blessed.
Why is it so?
What are the reasons behind baby boomers opinion?
There are many valid reasons that support baby boomers opinion
It is not without reason the baby boomers voiced their opinion. It is not just one or two reasons. In fact, there are multiple reasons that support their voice.
Let us see the reasons that support baby boomers ‘opinion on millennial employees.
Everybody agrees with this fact with no second thought. There are umpteen opportunities available for the millennial employees. If you compare the days when baby boomers were working, the opportunities are really aplenty for the millennial employees.
There has been a tremendous economic growth in many countries in the last two decades. This growth was not just limited to only the well-developed countries such USA, UK, France, and Japan. Even the third world countries or developing countries too had enormous economic growth in the last two decades. With the exponential rise in economy, some of these countries are economic powerhouses now
This surged economy has created a number of jobs in all these countries, which the millennial employees have grabbed with both the hands.
Advent of internet
Gone are the days when people had to starve or depend on multiple sources for any information that they needed. With the advent of the internet, the scenario has been completely changed. Whatever the information required, that can be availed with a few mouse clicks or screen touches.
Thanks to search engines such as Google, Yahoo, and Bing etc. the information landscape has been changed completely with 360 degrees. By leveraging the advantages of the internet, it has become extremely easy for the millennial employees searching for green pastures and grabbing the opportunities.
Added to these, there is the availability or access to job portals, which everyday posts thousands of jobs and making job search pretty easier for millennials.
Nobody denies the fact that technology is a great enabler. There is not even an iota of doubt on that. Jobs have been created not just in hundreds but in hoards due to the advancements in technology. Not just in one or two but in many countries. However, it was not the same in the days of baby boomers when they were working. It was not easy getting a job in the earlier days. There were many people who were left jobless and had to adjust their life fewer less means.
But, all has been changed with the creation and advancement of new technologies. The millennials got coveted jobs. As a matter of fact, some of the millennials themselves created thousands of jobs with their startup companies in the technology arena.
Technology has done wonders in the lives of many people. Especially, it is more in the lives of millennial employees.
Yes, the word is right. What you read is right. It is no hype. The millennial employees’ salaries are really hefty or mammoth. It is also a fact that the salaries of many millennial employees are much more than that of their working parents.
It is everybody’s knowledge that salaries have been sky-rocketed in the last two decades. The increase is coupled with adequate comforts. Millennials have adequate disposable income in their hands, which was not the same two decades ago.
Sea change in workplace infrastructure
True. One hundred percent. When it comes to workplace infrastructure and amenities, absolutely there is no comparison between baby boomers and millennials. The workspaces of millennials are at par with star hotels. In some cases, they are better than star hotels.
This phenomenal change is not just limited to just workplaces. The accompanied amenities too are of high quality. You name it you will get every facility in millennials’ offices these days. In fact, the workplaces have undergone 360-degree changes beginning with the 90s providing every facility to the millennial employees.
Improved HR policies
Another area that has undergone tremendous and positive changes in the last two decades is human resources. New HR policies have been formulated keeping the employee welfare as a top priority. HR is making every effort to keep the employees in good stead with the objective of increasing their productivity.
Millennial employees have a lot of learning opportunities these days. Updating skills or learning new courses is no big deal for the millennial employees. They don’t need to skip the office to update their skills. They don’t need to physically attend the classes. They also don’t need to shell out huge sums of money to learn new skills.
As in every sector, technology paved a great platform enabling the millennials learning the required skills with ease and that too from the comfort of the homes or from wherever they want or on the go. There are many companies offering courses online these days. There is Udemy. There is Coursera. There are more. The sky is only the limit.
Millennial employees can learn whatever they want, whenever they want, or wherever they want. Such is the flexibility the millennial employees are having nowadays.
However, these benefits notwithstanding, the millennial employees are getting bored these days
It is really a surprise to many.
In spite of having many advantages, the millennial employees are getting bored at work.
There is authentic information that supports this new finding.
Udemy has conducted a survey recently. According to it, millennials in the age group of 21 to 24 are likely
to be bored nearly twice (38%) than Baby Boomers (22%).
People generally satisfied when they have enough opportunities, facilities, and money. It is the human nature.
But, it is surprising for many baby boomers why millennial employees are getting bored with their work. They have umpteen advantages and benefits in the workplace, which hitherto unknown in baby boomers’ time. They don’t need to starve for the information but can it with ease. They work in beautiful workplaces equipped with excellent infrastructure coupled with abundant amenities. They get hefty salaries much more than baby boomers.
It is a big surprise. It is really a big surprise for many.
What happens when the millennial employees get bored?
It is anybody’s guess. There will be huge productivity loss when the millennial employees get bored with their work.
They cannot focus on their work. They will have low energy levels. They won’t be enthusiastic. They cannot put their best on the work. Their productivity will be dented largely. When their productivity is dented, it impacts the quality and delivery.
The ultimate result - the company’s revenue gets adversely impacted. All this is a cascading effect.
See how much US lost in productivity per year. As per Gallup estimation, it is between $450 billion and
$550 billion. It is whopping really.
That’s not all.
When they get bored with their work, the millennial employees start searching for jobs elsewhere. They
change jobs so frequently. There were instances where some millennial employees have changed six jobs in one year.
So, what is the way forward?
Millennials getting bored at work looks like a huge problem. However, on the positive side, it is not beyond repair. It can certainly be contained with a few concrete steps.
Here are the facts what you need to understand and act accordingly:
Millennial employees are different from the previous generations
The ground realty is - millennial employees’ is a new generation. Obviously, there is a generation gap
between millennial employees and baby boomers. Unlike the baby boomers, the aspirations of the millennial employees are different. They don’t mind taking risks. They can be content even with low pay packages. They don’t mind venturing into new avenues even at the cost of their jobs. They are completely different from the baby boomers.
The need of the hour is – engage the millennial employees with the work that infuse passion in their minds. The lack of constant engagement is one of the many reasons why the millennial employees are getting bored at work.
This is the first and first foremost thing that needs to be understood and implemented as well.
Raise the bar, their performance goes up
When there are not enough challenges, life becomes dull. Same is the case with work. When it is same and repetitive, obviously, it becomes monotonous and results in boredom. It is natural.
Raise the benchmark. The millennial employees are not risk averse. They like challenges. They have become smart with the advancements in technology. They are also smart in using technology. They have been grown up with it.
Let there be no room for complacency in their minds. As said earlier, repetitive jobs often lead to monotony and complacency. It is true. It is also a known fact that complacency leads to dissatisfaction and boredom. The performance of even the best athlete to goes down when there is no stiff challenge from the opponent. This is what happens exactly in the case of millennial employees.
If you want to get rid of boredom from the minds of these young guys, keep raising the benchmark- not in a stressful manner, but in an acceptable and enthusiastic way. You also have to come out with innovative methods to raise benchmark standards.
Let there be change in the feedback system
In a general scenario, feedback will be given to the employees during the appraisal times or in the predefined intervals in the companies. Again, what needs to be kept in mind here is - millennial employees are not like baby boomers. They are different. Their wants and aspirations are different. They always look for feedback.
This old system of giving feedback should give way to new measures.
Among the new measures, the first and very important one is – feedback should not be periodical or
time-based. It has to be frequent feedback. Most appropriately, it can be as and when an output is delivered or a work is accomplished. Because, unlike the baby boomers, the millennial employees always want to know how they have performed on a specific job.
Another important aspect that needs to be taken into account is – giving constructive feedback. Who likes the feedback that only focuses on the negative side of the employee performance? Instead of raising the employee productivity, it actually hurts them.
Even if the performance of an employee is not up to the mark, nothing can be achieved with undesirable criticism. Similarly, even if the intention of the giver is right, it certainly hurts the receiver if the feedback is harsh. On the other hand, if the feedback contains constructive suggestions coupled with a tinge of appreciation or encouragement, it will certainly raise the performance of the millennial employee.
This is a proven fact in fact.
In other words, the feedback needs to be clear, concise, specific, encouraging, and appreciative, if possible. Utmost care has to be taken that it should lead to misunderstanding.
Mentor not manage
Millennials always look for guidance. Encourage them. Provide them guidance. Listen to them. Give them helpful suggestions.
Millennials believe in the concept of ‘I can do’. What they need is an encouragement, not micromanagement. People skills play a vital role here.
More often than not that you can expect wonders from the millennials if you encourage them in the right manner. Yes. It is true. No doubt.
Entrust more responsibilities to millennials
Millennials have the capability to do multiple tasks. They have the wherewithal to perform any task in a most satisfying manner. What is required to bring out optimum performance from them is – giving them more responsibilities.
Trust them. Along with trusting, entrust them with more responsibilities. Ensure that the responsibilities should be like challenges. The millennials can head-on with challenges. As discussed earlier, millennial employees love challenges and they are not risk averse.
They can certainly deliver more than your expectations.
Provide them more learning opportunities
Updating ones skills is not just the order but the need of the day. The reason being - technology is changing quite often and throwing multiple challenges to the millennial employees. If they don’t update their skills, they will become obsolete and remain unwanted in the companies. In order to make them not become obsolete, provide them with enough learning opportunities.
There is a paradigm shift in the way people are learning skills these days. Anything can be learnt at any time and also at any place with the availability of new age training platforms such as Udemy and Corsera etc.
The only thing what millennial employee look towards you is your encouragement. That’s not all. You need to give them constant encouragement.
What will be the outcome when these millennial employees are provided with constant learning opportunities? Who is going to be benefited much? It is not just millennial employees. At the end of the day, if the employees are well equipped with the latest skills, more than them their organizations will be benefited a lot.
Be considerate, listen to them, and make them feel vital cogs
Who doesn’t want to be felt considered important in the organization? Everyone for that matter. None is an exception to this invisible human want. When you create an environment in which the millennial employees feel that they are important, much-vaunted, and can be vital cogs in the development of the organization, there will be a tremendous increase in their productivity.
As part of this, let the millennial employees be aware what the mission and objective of the organization
are. Also, define a clear team and individual goals as well.
Flexibility is what matters a lot
Size doesn’t matter for millennial employees. They don’t have any reservations working in smaller companies. They don’t mind working for smaller salaries. For them, what matters most is – flexible and healthy work environment. Of course, it has already been prevalent in many companies. More will follow suit sooner than later.
In a nutshell, millennial employees are getting bored with their work. The reasons are many. Some of them include lack of constant engagement, traditional work culture, and lack of opportunities and encouragement to learn new skills etc. However, there are still ways to prevent millennial employees not succumb to the boredom at work. You can get rid of this problem by implementing measures such as understanding the generation gap between millennials and baby boomers, raising benchmark standards, providing constructive feedback, entrusting them with more responsibilities, encouraging them to learn new skills, listening to their opinions, and creating conducive work environment.
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