Millennials (also known as Millennial Generation, or Generation Y) according to WIKIPEDIA are demographic cohort following Generation X. There are no precise dates when the generation starts and ends; most researchers and commentators use birth years ranging from the early 80s to the early 2000s.
In my recent reading of a book entitled “The Power of Reinvention” by Aido Papone, I came across an interesting topic, “What Millennials Need and Want to be Successful.” This is something I have always wanted to write about because I am part of Generation Y.
To start us off, I would like to introduce you to Mark Zuckerberg, the CEO and Founder of Facebook. He is the first Millennial CEO of a fortune 500 Company amongst many more other CEOs to come. According to David Kirkpatrick, author of The Facebook Effect, Zuckerberg is just getting started. “He’s going to become the richest person on the planet.”
As a leader of any business or company, you may want to learn more about Millennials. They aren’t just going to work for your company; they will change the rules of how you recruit, compensate/ pay, reward, manage and interact.
Most CEOs wear suits to work; others have done it everyday for the past 50 years. Millennials will definitely change what you wear. As a Millennial, I am not a fan of suits and I don’t remember the last time I wore a tie to an occasion or a function.
When leaders of today were young, media meant; print, radio and television and technology meant enormous computers that took up entire room. They were very expensive to operate and they used a great deal of electricity, and generated a lot of heat. Very bright men programmed these computers.
The Millennial Generation:
- Watch TV with remote control
- Have personal computer
- Have video games
- Have music players
These are just Millennials ways of life. They are always connected and are in constant communication, interacting with friends on social sites or on mobile phones texting or talking. They mix and remix music videos and movies from old times.
Because of their use of technologies, Millennials are natural connectors and collaborators, comfortable with forming and being part of teams and communities. Long ago, communities were defined by geography, politics or religious beliefs. Social diversity is part of Millennials lifestyle. They are tolerant to all types of diversity around them. They don’t like status quo, they visit places they have never been to before, and they discover new truths. Study by Price Water House Cooper revealed that 80% of Millennials would like to work abroad and 70% expect to use another language in their career.
Every generation complains about the younger generation. Today, parents are concerned about Generation Y’s; hair and clothing styles, taste of music, attitude about sex, drugs, marriage, and children. The truth is, every generation has been there, done that, or had it done to them.
Some people say Millennials take things for granted. They act like you should feel lucky to have them in your company. Other people have complained that Millennials want more pay but show less face time, hope to rise quickly in positions and they don’t stick around for very long. They also say Millennials want flexible jobs and more leave time. Laura Olin, a digital campaigner who ran social-media strategy for President Obama’s 2012 Campaign says; “I have encountered incredibly hard-working Millennials.” Other managers say that Millennials are bright, competent, hard working and are impressed with their young twenty-something hires than their workers who were born in earlier generation.
According to the article entitled “Do Millennials Make For Bad Employees?” Almost 70 percent of managers say that their young employees are equipped with skills that prior generations do not have; around 82 percent are impressed with their tech savvy. Around 60 percent of managers say that the generation is full of quick learners. Another 2013 survey from Ernst and Young found that a growing number of workers believed that Millennials were the best-sited generation to lead businesses in the coming decade, thanks in large part to their tech skills and commitment to diversity. Now I understand why Atlas Corps embraces Millennials from all over the world, and respects cultures and backgrounds. Thanks to Scott Beale, the Founder and CEO.
We cannot generalize that all Millennials make bad employees. Olin says; “I think these kids are preternaturally together, inventive, and socially aware because they have to be. I think they’re wise enough to realize that no one is going to fix the world for them-it’s up to them.”
What you need to know about Millennials
- They love what they do.
- Most of them learn constantly at work and even perform better.
- They would rather have no job than have one they hate.
- They are motivated if they know what they are doing.
- They will make your company or organization technologically savvy.
- They have the quality, traits and values.
- They share information freely and extend it to others.
- They only expect recognition in return for their contributions for greater good.
- They are more comfortable with other cultures.
- They help co-workers who are less informed about technology
Millennials work the way they live; they have mobile technology, which gives them instantaneous access to content, information and their peers. Millennials define a career as inventing great new jobs and doing them. They create their own positions and responsibilities at work.
To work successfully with the Millennials, you have to:
- Open up communication at all levels.
- Give constant feedback.
- Be open, honest and transparent.
- Turn up the volume of trust on the Millennials.
- Celebrate them, reward behaviors or their accomplishments.
- Provide necessary tools for them to make the best decisions.
- Provide mentoring and professional coaching for the Millennials.
Millennials thrive in recognition for the contributions they make and this definitely applies to everyone else. In Millennials, you find a generation with passion for change and young people who would like nothing better than a chance to make a difference at your work place. A study by PwC reveals that in 2016, almost 80% of the workforce of the PwC firms will be Millennials. How about your organization, are you considering Millennials?
Lastly, do not resist the influence of Millennials in your company or organization. Every generation that has come before has bowed to every generation that has followed. Millennials will reinvent your company or organization in theirs.
Aido Papone says; “Who knows, 10 or 15 years from now, you might end up working for a Millennial.”
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