2 Big Reasons Why Pokémon GO Struck Gold & Can Help You Understand Millennial Customers and Employees

Within 24 hours of release, Pokémon GO surged in popularity unlike anything the app store has seen before. In terms of time users spend on the app, it surpassed Snapchat, Twitter and even Facebook![1] If you’re unfamiliar with Pokémon GO, it’s an augmented-reality game that launched in the United States late last week. To break it down, the game lays a sort of semi-transparent Poké-world over your actual, physical location, which you can explore by literally walking around while staring at your screen.

The game has been all the hype over the past week, striking a chord in the millennial generation. Whether you are into gaming or not, you should pay attention. What they accomplished are hints to what your business might do to attract millennial customers.

 

Reason 1: Technology

Millennials were the first generation to grow up with technology being an influential part of their lives. Pokémon GO offers the best of both worlds: the joy of playing an addictive video game combined with the experience of interacting with others in the real world.

While technology has created a world where many millennials prefer to stay inside and immerse themselves alone in their screens, Pokémon GO has brought them together. Certain hotspots in the game attract more users, resulting in more physical, face-to-face interactions. The wild success in such a short time conveys that millennials do want to get out of the house and meet other people. By leveraging the inherent desire for human interaction along with a fun, addictive app, other companies can mimic this strategy to capture the attention of millennials. Forbes estimated that Pokémon GO is bringing in over $1.6 million in revenue per day in the United States alone.

 

Reason 2: First Brush with Millennial Nostalgia

Another reason this game has struck gold among generation Y is because it’s nostalgic. Pokémon became popular in the late 90’s, both on television and in video games (think back to the dinosaur age of Nintendo 64 and Gameboy.) The game has awakened positive, childhood memories among millennials. The familiarity of the app has proved to be a hit, and as the New York Times put it, “Millennial’s First Nostalgic Blast.” The game’s success has blazed a trail for other companies to leverage nostalgic games and memories of generation Y to create future products.

While it’s too early to tell if the game will plateau soon or become a “one hit wonder” for Niantic, the makers of the game, Pokémon GO has given businesses and marketers a look into the future of what millennials love.

The world is changing, as you can see from Pokémon GO, and those who understand and adapt to the interests and attention of millennials have a real opportunity to create  economic value and winning products and services.

 

 

[1] Lancaster, Luke. “Mobile Users Spent More Time on Pokemon Go than Facebook.” CNET. N.p., n.d. Web.

Celebrating Independence TODAY: Empower Your Team to be Interdependent

On this day 240 years ago, thirteen colonies broke away from Great Britain, forming a new nation, the United States of America. The earned independence and freedom we celebrate today is what makes the U S so incredible. Like the founding fathers, launchbox views independence as a necessary trait for next generation leaders.

The problem is that millions of millennials may not really understand independence. It’s not their fault. Think about it: although they ooze independence they may not actually get it. Here are some of the astounding facts:

  • for the first time since 1880, young adults ages 18 to 34 are more likely to live with a parent than in any other arrangement.[1]
  • 25 percent of people ages 25 to 29 live with a parent, up from 18 percent a decade ago[2]
  • 43 percent of millennials aged 30 to 33 are still financially dependent on their parents[3]

In his international best seller, The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People, Steven Covey brilliantly describes the process of maturation: dependence  → independence   interdependence.

  • Dependence is the stage where we are reliant on others to take care of us, a state of weakness and powerlessness. Called childhood.
  • As we grow into adulthood and learn to do things on our own, we become capable of taking care of ourselves and start becoming independent. Called young workforce (millennials).
  • Once we learn independence, we then become ripe for working at the highest level where the greatest human achievements occur: interdependence. This is where independent, capable individuals come together as a team to achieve a common goal or purpose. Like the connection of Youth and Experience. And this is where the magic happens. Called teams.

But before any group of individuals or organization can achieve interdependence, all members of a team must first learn to be independent. So let’s be grateful this 4th of July and demonstrate it by giving. Giving the commitment to teach our young millennials in and out of the workforce how to become a become confident communicators, and as a result, independent rock stars that deliver for the Team.

1.) Teach them how to communicate by using the WIFThem method

When I first heard that millennials were bringing their parents along for job interviews, I almost lost it. But this sad truth reveals that many millennials simply don’t know how to communicate. They don’t know how to showcase their skillset in a manner both relevant and valuable to whomever they’re speaking to.

At launchbox, we use the WIFThem approach. WIFThem stands for “What’s in it for them?” In other words, effective communicators understand how to deliver information in a way that’s relevant and important to the person they’re speaking to. Here’s an example of a statement without, and then with, WIFThem:

Average communicator: “I can analyze a spreadsheet.”

Vs.

WIFThem communicator: “I can process complex, quantitative data and info to help leaders give detailed advice to clients and managers.”

See the difference? By teaching millennials to use the WIFThem approach, they learn to communicate how their attributes will be of meaning and value. Let’s do us all a favor and make sure no more parents are attending their millennial (adult!) kid’s interviews.

2.) Show them how to deliver their story

We all must be in the story business. The best speeches and business books present ideas and lessons through stories. The best commercials and advertisements convince us to buy certain products because the stories they tell resonate with us on an emotional level.

At launchbox, we ask three important questions that help people of all ages identify who they are so they can communicate their story effectively and powerfully:

  1. Who am I?

  2. What is my experience?

  3. What value do I bring?

The answer to these questions can manifest in a variety of ways. But regardless of the answer, these questions will help someone uncover their identity and core. By answering these questions (however that looks for you personally) you are already on your way to delivering a powerful story.

Effective communication is key for a person to become independent and any company to become interdependent. As you celebrate the independence of the United States of America today, utilize these concepts in your home or workplace to develop independent, high performing millennials today!

Chasing Relevance by Dan Negroni

Want to learn more about how to communicate effectively, deliver your story and become an independent all star? Grab a copy of Chasing Relevance: 6 Steps to Understand, Engage and Maximize Next Generation Leaders in the Workplace.

 

[1] Clair, Ben St. “Seven Habits Study Guide/Paradigms and Principles.” – Wikibooks, Open Books for an Open World. N.p., n.d. Web. 03 July 2016.

[2] 2 Clair, Ben St. “Seven Habits Study Guide/Paradigms and Principles.” – Wikibooks, Open Books for an Open World. N.p., n.d. Web. 03 July 2016.

[3] Henderson, J. Maureen. Forbes. Forbes Magazine, n.d. Web. 03 July 2016.

 

Stop Waiting and Start Acting! Bridge the Gap Today

Seth Godin asked the age-old question in his recent blog post, “But where’s the money?” Oh and boy did it resonate with me. We are the company trying to impact lives by training and coaching relevance with the next generation client and employee. And we are sure that this connection, bridging the gap between youth and experience, is where the magic happens. Yet, companies constantly tell us they don’t have the budget to explore that magic, which will create disruptive results.

Now, we are sure that a disconnect between the generations exists – and that it is very, very big. We also know through client wins that the most unique and lucrative place is where youth and experience combine to create relevant and profitable businesses and solutions. Yet, why does everyone want to wait until they have more money to understand it and maximize their workplace? Seth said it best when he told this story:

“my colleague was talking to the CEO of a fast-growing small business about a partnership opportunity. The CEO said, “well, this is something we believe in, something we want to have happen,” and then he continued, “in fact, it’s something my partners and I want to be able to support in our personal and our corporate lives.” 

Btw, I hear that all day, everyday about people that want or need coaching to move forward, create growth and sales in their business, and to connect with millennial employees and clients. But then they decline just like Seth’s guy:

“he (they) declined, because, times are tough, the company is small, they need all their resources, etc.”

Seth, a brilliant wordsmith, suggests:

“If you aren’t willing to live your values now, when will you start?”

A company that begins with its priorities straight–about how it will keep promises, treat its workers, support causes it believes in–will rarely have trouble becoming the kind of company that does this at scale. But if you put it in a folder marked “later,” it may never happen.”

So, I say DO SOMETHING and make it happen! Do what you have wanted to do, because in the fastest paced world ever, you need to think about moving, disrupting and acting. And who is going to be there to help you or buy from you? Milllennials, a.k.a the next generation. Only 23% of companies have a plan in place to do that. The other 77% do nothing or continue to complain… but how about doing something? How about taking action to create something profitable and positive?

As Seth says:

“So yes, doing the thing that you believe in will get you better employees, better customers and more growth.”

Why? Because it is what you need to do to build your business. The alternative, putting it in a folder to wait for someone else to kick your butt and then try and shift, is not that effective. You don’t need me to tell you that.

Instead, don’t ignore the action you need to take to engage and connect with the next generation of clients and employees who are growing to 75% of the workforce by 2025 and 83 million strong today with $660 billion worth of retail spending power.

Start now with a plan to define your relevance and then go create it. NOW!

Our book get’s you started:

Chasing Relevance by Dan Negroni

Chasing Relevance: 6 Steps to Understand, Engage and Maximize Next-Generation Leaders in the Workplace

3 Ways to Fulfill and Retain Millennial Employees

Often tagged “the job hopping generation,” it’s a common myth that millennials are disloyal and don’t care about job security. With this viewpoint, why put in the time to train and develop your millennial workforce when they’re going to split in a year or two? From this perspective, it’s pointless. However, by understanding the concerns of millennials and looking at reality through their lens, a few important factors stand out that shatter this myth.

49% of millennials say they would like to stay with an organization for more than 10 years, according to research performed by the Center for Creative Leadership.[1] Many millennials actually crave job security. They grew up during the 2008 recession, witnessing devastating layoffs. They have the highest levels of student debt in history. They’re worried about raising kids or putting down a mortgage due to the possibility of being laid off.

By understanding the concerns of millennials, this job hopping “problem” can be turned into an “opportunity” to engage and fulfill employees for the long run. Here are three ways to help you fulfill and retain millennial employees:

  1. Constantly Communicate and Provide Feedback

Millennials grew up in the digital age of instant gratification and constant connection. Therefore, they’re used to receiving immediate feedback and having an outlet to tweet their opinion at the snap of their fingers. By maintaining relationships with millennials through regularly asking questions and making an effort to understand things from their perspective, feedback becomes conversational, as opposed to being confrontational. This creates an environment where millennials feel that their voice matters and that their opinion is valued.

Another important factor to keep in mind is that millennials want feedback; the problem is they won’t ask for it. Show appreciation regularly. When they make mistakes, let them know in a constructive, teachable manner. By making the effort to make millennials feel understood, valued and an integral part of your company, they will feel more comfortable speaking up. This relationship fosters loyalty and will help fulfill and retain your millennial employees.

2.) Display Advancement Opportunities

Millennials are young. They’re hungry. They’re ambitious. As a manger, you can help them see opportunities to advance and be promoted within the company. Likewise, you can offer lateral growth opportunities, allowing them to become skilled in a variety of fields. This will help your company develop a multi talented, capable millennial workforce that understands how different departments operate. This will breed understanding and insight into how to serve the best interests of your company.

From a retention standpoint, opportunity for growth causes a shift in the mindsets of millennial employees. By openly presenting advancement opportunities, millennials will naturally view their job and career over the long term. A secure, rewarding job with the possibility of advancing and learning new skills is a sure way to create long-term retention with millennial employees. Recognizing the importance of job security and growth opportunity will help attract a stable, loyal workforce.

3.) Allow for Balance and Flexibility

Lack of flexibility was cited among the top reasons millennials quit their jobs, according to surveys performed by Ernst and Young’s Global Generation Research.[2] Millennials see that technology allows them to be productive and get work done regardless of location. However, many older bosses (who didn’t grow up with digital technology) don’t understand this. Multiple surveys show that what millennials want most is where, when and how they work.[3]

By creating a flexible work environment, you can fulfill one of the highest demands of millennials. As long as a flexible, work-life balance doesn’t affect results, it should be embraced. Millennials are more likely to commit to a company long term if it allows for a flexible work-life balance.

Don’t be put off by the myth that millennials are a job-hopping, disloyal bunch. You can view your millennial workforce as a “problem to complain about” or an “opportunity to be embraced.” Through communication and feedback, openly presenting advancement opportunities, and creating a flexible and balanced work schedule, you can fulfill the wants and needs of your millennial workforce, while also creating an atmosphere where they will want to work over a long period of time.

Interested in learning more about bridging the gap between millennials and managers? Make sure to get your hands on Dan Negroni’s new book,  Chasing Relevance: 6 Steps to Understand, Engage and Maximize Next Generation Leaders in the Workplace.

Chasing Relevance by Dan Negroni

 

[1] Deal, Jennifer. “Why the Conventional Wisdom About Job-Hopping Millennials Is Wrong.” WSJ. Dow Jones & Company, Inc., n.d. Web. 22 June 2016.

[2] Schulte, Brigid. “Millennials Want a Work-life Balance. Their Bosses Just Don’t Get Why.” Washington Post. The Washington Post, n.d. Web. 23 June 2016.

[3] Schulte, Brigid. “Millennials Want a Work-life Balance. Their Bosses Just Don’t Get Why.” Washington Post. The Washington Post, n.d. Web. 23 June 2016.

How to Help Millennials Succeed in the Workplace

This is a guest post written by Arman Sadeghi of Titanium Success.

Millennials could make up close to 40% of the total workforce by the year 2020, according to the results of a research study conducted by the Association for Talent Development. Businesses are increasingly hiring this fresh source of talent and skills for their operations. However, companies often find that these young people have different methods of working with a distinct ideology from their predecessors. This factor changes the office dynamics completely.

Business owners need to help their millennial workforce assimilate into the company to make full use of their potential. To do this, they need to take several steps that can help reduce employee turnover. Here’s where a business coach comes in. Businesses often choose to hire such personnel to help them understand the strategies they need to adopt. These methods will help millennials succeed in the workplace.

Understand Their Expectations

A few years ago, employees were content to join a good company and work for an extended time, all the while steadily moving up the corporate ladder. Millennials, on the other hand, often have aspirations about wanting to become entrepreneurs. They would prefer to work in managerial positions of leadership. Considering the many young role models they have, millenials feel inspired to follow paths that can lead them to grow and succeed.

Many millennials do continue to work with enterprises for a long period of time, but only so long as their needs are met. If they feel they’re not getting enough opportunities, they’re very likely to move on to setups where other options are available. To work with such young people, you need to adjust the culture of your company. Work with your peak performance coach to create an atmosphere that is conducive to growth, while also being beneficial for your company.

Offer Them Better Orientation and Training

Schools and colleges do give students academic training. However, post-graduation, these students need practical skills that can help them perform in an actual workplace. These skills are often not taught in a traditional college environment. If you offer the proper training, millenials will learn the necessary skills to become independent, reliable and talented leaders in your company. Among the critical aptitudes they need is the ability to think and solve problems, work on and deliver presentations, analyze situations and adapt to the ever changing market. It is also essential to teach them time management, communication, effective listening skills, and most important, working as a part of the team.

Offer Flexible Work Hours

Millennials today have different priorities as compared to the employees before them. They prefer to maintain the perfect work-life balance and want to make time for leisure, entertainment, family, and friends. This is why they prefer jobs in companies where they are free to work at the times that suit them best. One of the pointers your peak performance coach is likely to give you is to allow for flexible working hours. Give your people the go-ahead to use digital technology and work remotely from home if they need to. You’ll also want to allow them to work on weekends and out of office hours if they want to. This way, you’ll encourage productivity and ensure employee satisfaction.

Ensure Manager-Employee Interaction

Young workers prefer flexible working hours and are tech savvy. They are comfortable using gadgets and apps to receive instructions, submit work and stay in touch with their teams. As your peak performance coach will likely point out, they also appreciate the opportunity to interact personally with their colleagues and managers. Institute an open-door policy as your company culture. Instruct your managers to welcome new and innovative ideas. Make sure your millennial workers receive constructive feedback on their performance and that they are allowed to communicate freely with their managers and superiors.

Offer Opportunities to Learn and Grow

Millennials are eager to learn and advance their skills. They are always looking for opportunities to excel by taking on challenging tasks. They thrive on the excitement of working on new assignments. If they see stagnation, they’re likely to move to setups where they can learn and grow. Offer your people training programs and adopt policies where your younger workforce can develop their talents.

For instance, consider the task rotation strategy. Your peak performance coach can show you how to move employees to other lateral positions in the company. Allow them to work in a new role for a preset time period so they can learn to manage other responsibilities and develop new skills. Assigning new projects is another way to challenge their creative abilities. Millennials respect and enjoy a work environment where they are pushed out of their comfort zone. Help them develop their flexibility and ingenuity to aid the success of your company. With that being said, make sure the new tasks aren’t so tough that it leads to discontent.

Work Out a Competitive Salary Structure

In today’s times where remote hiring has made great strides, the job market has gone global. Millennials now find that there is a demand for their talents and skills on an international scale. Hence, they are exposed to better opportunities and salary structures. To retain the skills you need for the growth of your enterprise, your peak performance coach will advise that you need to change your perspective about the remunerations you’re offering. The younger workforce is more focused on the salaries they can earn. You’ll also find that better positions and promotions are no longer enough to stay with a company. Remember, they can get those at other setups also. This is why you’ll need to pay competitive salaries to keep your employees.

These are just some of the factors you need to keep in mind when hiring and working with a team of millennial employees. Given that the work environment is evolving rapidly, it’s advantageous to have a peak performance coach on board to help you direct your team, and help millennials succeed in the workplace.

 

References:

  1. http://www.cio.com/article/2883906/careers-staffing/how-to-help-millennials-shine-in-the-workplace.html

 

 

Interested in learning more about bridging the gap between millennials and managers? Make sure to get your hands on Dan Negroni’s new book,  Chasing Relevance: 6 Steps to Understand, Engage and Maximize Next Generation Leaders in the Workplace.

ChasingRelevance_Home_book_cover_nobg

 

3 Reasons Samsung is the Most Trusted Company Among Millennials

A recent poll by the Reputation Institute (RI) revealed that Samsung is the number 1 most trusted company among millennials in the United States. Considering that millenials consist of over 75 million people between the ages of 18 and 34, this is great news for Samsung. According to the results of this year’s RI millennial survey, when millenials decide a company is worthy of their trust and respect, they are more willing to work for, recommend and buy products from a firm they find reputable. What is Samsung doing so well that makes it the most trusted company among the largest growing generation in the world?

RI attributes Samsung’s ability to successfully gain the millenials’ trust and attention to three things: self-promotion on social media, commitment to social responsibility and creating an inclusive culture.

 

1.) Social Media Promotion and Campaigns

Social media is arguably the most important tool for a company to gain the trust of millenials. Over 90% of adults aged 18 to 29 use social media—and that number is growing rapidly.[1] The average millennial checks his or her smart phone 43 times a day.[2] Understanding these facts, it’s critical to establish a strong social media presence if a company or brand is looking to engage with millenials.

In today’s world, not having a social media presence is essentially not having any presence at all. Through self-promotion on social media, Samsung has established themselves as a familiar, trustworthy firm to millenials. This earned trust has provided Samsung the leverage to be the most favored company among millenials.

 

2.) Commitment to Social Responsibility

A poll commissioned by the Clinton Global Initiative and Microsoft revealed that millenials are more focused on the environment than their parent’s generation—a wide margin of 76% compared to a meager 24%.[3] In other words, millenials value environmental sustainability and appreciate efforts to make the world a better place.

 Samsung’s commitment to social responsibility is a huge factor in winning over millenials. Their transparency about their sustainability efforts and green initiatives are displayed openly on their website and on social media. For example, here is one of their statistics that exemplifies their effort to improve the environment: “In 2010, we will have reduced greenhouse gas emissions from our operations by 45% from 2001 levels.”

Samsung’s transparency reports and efforts to improve the environment resonate with people—and millenials—on an emotional level. This openness humanizes them as a company. Instead of being viewed as a large, corporate tech giant, they’ve effectively communicated that they are a “company who believes it’s our responsibility to do business in a way that enriches the planet.”

 

3.) Creating an Inclusive Culture

In today’s world, everyone wants to be heard. The rapid rise and prevalence of social media has created an environment where companies cannot afford to neglect their employees and customers. Having an inclusive culture is an essential part of Samsung’s strategy moving forward.

Samsung made headlines last month as they announced their “aim to reform our internal culture, execute as quickly as a startup company and push towards open communication and continuously innovate.”[4] Samsung executives will be signing a pledge to create a working atmosphere that fosters open dialogue. By adopting an inclusive culture, Samsung is yet again moving in the right direction in terms of understanding what millenials want. Through social media, millenials grew up with having a voice at a young age. Shifting to an atmosphere that embraces communication, Samsung is creating an environment both conducive and attractive to the largest growing generation in the world.

 

Embrace the strategies that have made Samsung the most trusted company among millenials and see what happens. Through social media, commitment to the environment and fostering an inclusive culture, you too can gain the trust of millenials.

 

 

[1] Pick, Tom. “47 Superb Social Media Marketing Stats and Facts.” Business 2 Community 47 Superb Social Media Marketing Stats and Facts Comments. N.p., n.d. Web. 14 June 2016.

[2] Clifford, Catherine. “Millennials Check Their Phones 43 Times a Day. This Is What They’re Looking For. (Infographic).” Entrepreneur. N.p., 04 June 2014. Web. 14 June 2016.

[3]Timm, Jance C. “Millenials: We Care About the Environment.” MSNBC. N.p., n.d. Web.

[4] Lee, Se Young. “World’s Biggest Startup? Samsung Electronics to Reform Corporate Culture.” Reuters. Thomson Reuters, 24 Mar. 2016. Web. 14 June 2016.

Step Up Your Game, Develop a Personal Brand

Great branding doesn’t just apply to businesses. In fact, you can develop your own personal brand and jumpstart your career in any industry. But your personal brand isn’t about a good color scheme and font; rather, it involves identifying your strengths, values, and passions and using these attributes to build your professional presence. Here’s how you can create your own personal brand and give your career the boost it needs.

Identify strengths & weaknesses

During interviews, you’re likely asked about your strengths and weaknesses as an employee. But when you’re building your personal brand, you’re digging much deeper than these questions suggest. Identify a few things that you do particularly well. To get yourself started, you can ask yourself the following:

  • During your past successes, what was it that made you so successful?
  • What skill do you find yourself using the most in challenging situations?
  • What are some strengths others have identified in you?

Once you’ve created a list, narrow it down by deciding which skills you would enjoy using on a daily basis. This will help you identify a long-term brand path that will be both successful and enjoyable.

Network

Climbing any career ladder requires a little help. Fortunately, you have a built-in support system with your coworkers and upper management. Start by establishing a mentorship with senior staff, or by helping others around the office with small projects.

You never know who might lend a helping hand, so make connections in unexpected places to build potential in your professional network. If you make a habit of adding value to your work relationships, this will become something you’re known for and word travels fast of helpful, enthusiastic professionals.

Blend personal & professional

A great way to build your personal brand is by getting more involved with extracurricular activities around the office. Is there a party planning committee? Ask to join. You can also create your own social groups, whether you’d like to organize a monthly company outing or a book club among coworkers. This pro-activity and positive attitude will add a richness to your personal brand that will help keep you at the top of your game.

Get noticed

Finding ways to stand out can be difficult, but if you’re charismatic, open-minded, and willing to take advantage of new opportunities, you’ll find yourself getting noticed by your superiors and your coworkers alike. Be careful that you don’t have any traits that can negatively impact your personal brand, whether that’s tardiness, lack of professionalism, or unreliability.

Changes won’t happen overnight, but if you maintain these good habits over a period of years, you’ll successfully build your own personal brand and establish yourself as a person worth working with. Plan for the future with a well-developed, carefully designed personal brand.

The Unexpected Path to Great Leadership

A lot of thought has gone into what makes a great leader, but it isn’t always traits like ambition and creativity that come into consideration. In fact, the way leaders view the goals and aspirations of their employees can be as telling as their personal characteristics.

Managers who honor the aspirations of their staff—even if those aspirations may be unrealistic or impossible—have what it takes to become a great leader. Here is why you should care about the dreams and ideas of your staff, and how this can impact your potential as a leader.

Managers as Role Models

As a manager, you hold a lot of influence over your staff, both in what they do and how they think.  If an employee expresses a career goal or an idea they have, how you react has the potential to affect their optimism and their long-term plans.  So instead of shooting down an idea, take the time to get to know your employee and understand the motivations that are driving this idea.

The better you know your staff, the more able you are to provide insight and advice when it comes to their aspirations.  They’ll trust your opinion and show more respect for your leadership if you take the time to discuss their plans.  As a result, you’ll be more able to inspire action and innovation and will be a more effective leader over all.

Finding Value in Aspirations

When your staff members have ambitious and long-term goals, these can benefit your company as well as the employee.  In pursuit of their ambitions, they likely want to develop or improve their skills and branch out into new areas of expertise.  If you offer training or professional development incentives, you’ll have a more talented, productive team and a more competitive organization as a whole.

Even if you don’t have the budget for training or development courses, you can honor your employees’ aspirations by offering them the opportunity to take on new roles within the organization.  Do you have a customer service rep who has an interest in IT? Give them the chance to shadow your IT staff or try their hand at small tasks.  Similarly, if some of your employees have the goal of becoming managers, you can slowly increase their responsibilities and allow them to learn managerial skills on the job.

Honoring the career goals of your employees can allow you to grow your skills as a leader, and it can also greatly benefit your company in the long run. You’ll develop a talented, motivated staff that values your role as a leader and looks forward to their future with your company.

 

The Era of Millennial Multi-Tasking

Known as “digital natives,” millennials are known for being tech-savvy both in their personal and their professional lives. While this may come as a benefit in many situations, some employers worry that this dependence on technology can impair a candidate’s ability to prioritize their work and effectively multi-task without becoming distracted or side-tracked. Is this concern warranted, or does the millennial connection to technology make them better multi-taskers?

The Effect of Technology

Unlike previous generations, millennials grew up with a heavy emphasis on technology, both in school and as a source of entertainment. As a result, they developed a habit of doing several things at once—whether that’s IMing their friends, responding to emails, or browsing the web.

Given the ubiquity of technology in their lives, this comes as no surprise. Many millennials listen to music while they work, or leave a television on in the background. Even more have multiple browsers open and several programs demanding their attention as they work.

However, this practice doesn’t seem to affect their ability to concentrate. In fact, studies show that younger generations are more comfortable with multi-tasking than their older counterparts. They can perform complex tasks with a variety of ambient distractions, including music and nearby conversations, and can bounce back and forth between different activities without feeling distracted or overwhelmed.

As a result, millennials are particularly adept at careers in IT, communications, or marketing roles. They’re able to manage heavy workloads, fast-paced environments, and energetic workplaces that might distract non-tech focused employees.

The Harm of Multi-Tasking

Millennial candidates do need to keep in mind that there is a right time and a wrong time for multi-tasking. For instance, during assignments that require a high level of concentration, accuracy, or attention to detail, it’s best to eliminate other distractions and focus on the task at hand. In other instances, multi-tasking may involve social media or personal conversations with friends or family that can derail your focus and result in poor work performance.

Effective multi-tasking demands a balance between periods of intense concentration and periods of responsiveness to the demands of different tasks. To control your attention span, know when to close out of instant messengers or put your phone on “Do Not Disturb.” You can always take a temporary break from technology if you feel that it is becoming too much of a distraction during your work day.

Multi-tasking is a skill that many millennials possess, and it allows them to dedicate their attention to a variety of tasks at any given moment. However, if you find yourself facing distractions, take the time to step away from technology and focus on the task at hand. If you can identify your biggest distraction, you’ll be a more effective multi-tasker and a more productive employee.

Millennial Female Advantage

A lot has changed in the past few decades, and for women, this holds particularly true. Women are entering the workplace at an unprecedented rate, and as a result, are quickly becoming the primary income earners in their home.

This is impacting the way decisions are made and the power millennial women have in the workplace and within the home. In fact, a recent survey from U.S. Trust found that 31% of millennial women are the dominant decision-makers in their families, compared to 11% of Gen X women, and 9% of women from the Baby Boomer generation.

But this isn’t the only generational gender shift researchers are seeing. A study from PwC observed dozens of new changes within this growing segment of the workforce.

Presence in the Workforce

In the next decade, one billion women are expected to enter the workplace—nearly double the number that joined from 1980-2008. Add the fact that women are pursuing advanced degrees at higher rates than their male counterparts, and the potential for change within the workforce is tremendous. As companies begin to see higher rates of female employees, they’ll begin to see a demand for employer traits prioritized by female workers, namely:

  • Opportunities for career progression (reported by 53% of respondents)
  • Competitive wages and other financial incentives (52%)
  • Flexible working arrangements available (35%)
  • Good benefits packages including pensions, healthcare, and other benefits (33%)
  • Excellent training and development programs (27%)

As companies begin to respond to the need of this highly educated, highly motivated segment of the workforce, the structure of the workplace will continue to change.

The Millennial Mindset

As they begin their careers, millennial women are more confident and career-focused than previous generations. 49% feel that they are able to achieve a senior role in their current company, and 31% have left employers for not providing more opportunities for upward momentum. In fact, this is the most common reason women reported leaving their company.

This increased ambition and focus on developing their careers has allowed women to gain more earning power within their companies. In fact, PwC found that 66% of female millennials earn equal to or more than their partner.

The Outcome

These generational differences are allowing millennial women to not only shape their households, but shape the workplace as well. They have a greater purchasing power, the ability to make more financial decisions within the home, and more potential for career growth within their companies.

Companies are starting to take notice of the highly educated, driven female millennials that are entering the workforce, and are beginning to respond to their needs as a result. This is changing the way we work as a corporate culture, and many times, creating a more diverse, inclusive workplace.