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4 Important Questions You Should Be Asking & the 4 Actions They Will Make You Take to Win the Millennial Race!

“The art and science of asking questions is the source of all knowledge.”

– Thomas Berger

 

The only way to get powerful answers is by asking powerful questions. Deloitte released a brilliant and insightful report about 10 questions you should be asking. We’ve taken 4 of these 10 key questions and shifted the focus on how they relate to your millennial workforce.

1.) What risks are my biases creating?

Every action we take is in accordance with our belief system. The beliefs we hold are much more powerful than we realize. They can cage us in or empower us; they can hold us back or push us forward. If you are biased by the myths that millennials are entitled, lazy, and selfish, could that be affecting your business? Considering that millennials are 60% of the world’s population (and that number is growing fast), this could adversely affect your operations, your relationship with millennial employees and your strategy moving forward.

The Deloitte report reveals, “during periods of great change, at the very moment rationality is needed most, the impulse to act without reason kicks in.” To act impulsively and think from a victim mindset is the easy thing to do. “My millennials don’t work hard. They don’t care at all.” But what if you take a different approach, taking responsibility for your workforce and finding ways to empower and engage them? Seek advice from people in your organization who you can trust, especially millennials themselves. Ask people outside your organization what they think. This will help remove any biases that may be holding your business back from excelling.

ACTION: Ask the Millennial and Manager so you can bridge the gap!

2.) Am I acting decisively when I see change around the corner?

The world is changing, and fast. Technology is altering the way we do business and will continue to do so over the next decade. If you don’t grab innovation by the horns and adapt to current and future trends, you will be left by the wayside. It’s evident that company culture, business ethics, virtual opportunity, and generational gaps are among us. But, as stated elegantly in the Deloitte report, “The problem is not just seeing around the corner. It’s also deciding when to take arms, and then taking them confidently.”

Boom. It’s one thing to notice a problem (or opportunity, depending on how you see it.) It’s another thing to take initiative and act. Three out of four companies do not have a plan in place to adjust to the millennial shift in both the workforce and economy. Great leaders make changes before the changes overcome them. Make sure your organization is equipped and prepared for the rise of millennials.

ACTION: Get a friggin plan together now, appoint a committee, DO SOMETHING TODAY!

3.) What’s your reputation worth, and who owns it?

Reputation is everything. It’s worth more than just dollars, and is measured in a variety of currencies like attention, trust and loyalty. Reputation defines the heart of your business. It reveals what you represent and how you fulfill the promises and expectations of your customers and employees.

We agree with the Deloitte report, which encourages a brand reputation program to help enhance, progress and preserve your reputation and business. “That program should engage employees as corporate ambassadors, constantly look for gaps in what is promised vs. what is delivered, and invest in systems to monitor and track external feedback across stakeholders.” What are you promising your millennial employees? A Deloitte Millennial survey revealed that 44% of millennials rejected a job offer because the company values didn’t match their own.[1] Is your company delivering on its moral values? Make sure you are transparent about who you are and what you stand for.

ACTION: Develop your brand story clearly, create it, be it, live it, live it with relevance. Don’t look back. Be your brand and millennials will make your brand relevant!

4.) Who digs in and challenges the assumptions in my strategy?

Having a devil’s advocate is essential for challenging assumptions, eliminating biases, surfacing blind spots, offering new perspectives and building a resilient strategy. As the old adage says, “If it doesn’t challenge you, it doesn’t change you.” Assumptions can be wrong. By openly discussing strategy and encouraging a devil’s advocate to challenge strategy, you can remove possible flaws and weaknesses as well as adopt new ideas to strengthen your game plan.

The great part about having a diverse workforce is that every person has a unique set of experiences. Therefore, each individual may see a problem or opportunity that only they can see due to his or her perspective. As Alan Alda said, “Begin challenging your own assumptions. Your assumptions are your windows on the world. Scrub them off every once in awhile, or the light won’t come in.”

ACTION: Push yourself now. Engage a millennial to push you and let them. You will be better, stronger and wiser, which will grow your business.

DO SOMETHING NOW: GO GROW YOURSELF!

Chasing Relevance by Dan Negroni

Interested in learning more about bridging the gap between millennials and managers? Here’s your chance! Grab your copy of  Chasing Relevance: 6 Steps to Understand, Engage and Maximize Next Generation Leaders in the Workplace.

 

[1] Yakowicz, Will. “Half of Millennials Would Reject a Work Assignment That Clashed With Their Ethics.” Inc.com. N.p., n.d. Web. 29 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

 

Leadership Training

As Baby Boomers age out of the workforce, millennials are beginning to take their place as a new generation of leaders. This can have unexpected consequences for employers as their legacy workers leave, taking years of experience and knowledge with them. Is your company prepared for this big change? More importantly, are your millennial employees prepared to fill the shoes of senior employees?

Recognize Strengths & Weakness

While these two generations shared a work space, they benefited from a combined cultural intelligence that helped meet the demands of their company. But now that Baby Boomers are heading into retirement, employers must take a close look at the strengths and weaknesses of each of these demographics, and how that dynamic might change without its senior staff.

Millennials are often referred to as “digital natives,” given the prominence of technology in their day to day lives. This fluency in new technology brings a lot to the table, but it may come up lacking when a situation calls for experience over technical know-how. Generation Y employees are fast learners, however, so there are ways around this growing problem.

Plan for Leadership Training

If they haven’t retired already, your older employers are likely beginning to plan for their final years with your company. This window of time can be a valuable opportunity for getting your millennial staff up to speed. There are two ways you can take advantage of Baby Boomer knowledge and experience.

  1. Establish leadership training programs. Your tenured staff have built up a large repertoire of industry knowledge and practical skills that help them accomplish their goals. Give them a platform for sharing their ideas by providing group training, seminars, and other skill-building opportunities for younger generations. This will give your seasoned staff the ability to impart their accumulated knowledge on their peers, while offering newer employees insight into the information they need to build successful careers.
  1. Promote mentorships within the company. One-on-one pairings not only provide opportunities for your employees to get to know one another, but it also gives them more focused feedback on their professional experience. If there’s a particular area that they struggle with, or if they’re interested in gaining a unique skill, they can express these interests to their mentor who can then guide them through the learning process. These relationships can be enriching and rewarding for both parties

The departure of your Baby Boomers doesn’t have to spell disaster for your company. If you recognize the gap between skill and experience and take steps to close that gap, you’ll not only have a healthy company after the coming retirement wave, but your millennial employees will be well-rounded, talented, and ready to take on any challenges that come their way.