What do millennials want? If you knew the answer to that, you probably wouldn’t be interested in reading this blog. But I want to let you in on a secret: millennials want what everyone else wants.
We’ve just been taught that we don’t have to settle. With so many options available for any situation and just a click of a button away, we don’t think we should settle either.
So, when we go to work, we don’t want to just GO to work. This is especially important to millennials because we have a different notion of the idea of work/life balance than the generations before us. Millennials prefer the kind of flexibility in their schedules that today’s familiar technologies allow. As a result, our jobs have become entangled in our identities in ways other generations haven’t experienced. This means that members of the millennial generation are used to feeling like they are at work even when they aren’t in the office.
Therefore, millennials seek a positive work environment that we won’t mind being constantly immersed in. We want to work somewhere that feels like home – somewhere comfortable, somewhere inviting, and somewhere that’s filled with people we love spending time with.
You may think that means we want to work at a place where we can chill on comfy couches, snack, and hang with our friends all day. In reality, that means we want to work at an organization where we feel free to dream big, supported by our colleagues, and surrounded by respectful people that are just as excited about a fresh idea as we are.
Millennials are motivated by a positive work environment. Does your business measure up? Ask yourself the following questions to see if you have an organizational culture that motivates millennials:
1. Do our current millennial employees seem satisfied?
Are your millennials happy? The ability to hire and keep millennial employees demonstrates that you have a culture that appeals to them. Are they good advocates for your business? Millennials who sing your praises are not only great for marketing, but they are actively contributing to a positive culture. Are they willing to work above and beyond? This is another great sign that they are invested in your company.
2. Do we promote from within?
Millennials don’t just want jobs – we want careers. Do you provide opportunities for them to learn and develop their skill set? It is hard for millennials to commit when they feel stuck in a job with no ability to work their way up. If you are loyal to a millennial’s professional development, they are much more likely to remain loyal to your company. Show them where they can go and then watch them get there. Do you indicate clearly what is required of them to move up the ladder? Help your millennials set goals and watch them thrive!
3. Do our employees show respect toward millennials?
Unfortunately, millennials have a bad reputation that can sometimes color interactions with individuals from other generations. It’s important that your organization values millennial contributions even though they may be inexperienced. Millennials don’t need to be coddled, but we do want to feel that our opinions and ideas are given as much consideration as those of our coworkers. Professionalism, patience, and courtesy can go a long way when working alongside millennials.
4. Do our employees make good teachers?
Millennials want to learn, but not everyone has the patience to answer their questions. It’s essential to hire skilled employees that love to share their expertise with new hires and watch them grow. In addition to developing new skills and mastering strong ones, this serves to strengthen bonds and encourage a supportive environment for everyone. Only when everyone is truly invested in each others’ success can you achieve the kind of company culture that pushes the boundaries of its industry.
5. Is our organization open to change?
Millennials are known for challenging the status quo. We aim for efficiency, speed, and effectiveness. If you’re looking to motivate millennials, you’ll want to demonstrate that your organization is open to change. An environment in which employees follow outdated mandates and procedures simply because ‘it’s the way things have always been done” is frustrating to the millennial generation. Encourage millennials to provide evidence to support their ideas and show that a clear, logical argument can impact change when necessary.
What do you value in your work environment? Does it differ from what values you notice for millennials? Comment below and let us know! Then click the link below to follow a new millennial hire and uncover ways to adapt your workplace environment to motivate millennials: