They are the largest generation since the vaunted post-WW2 baby boom, and they are entering the workforce in droves every single day. They are the Millennials, and you need to know how to get the most out of them … or they will find someone who can.
That’s the core truth about Millennials. They think differently than their boomer and even their GenX forebears. They have different perspectives, priorities, and motivations. The “old way” of doing business won’t work with them. Certainly, not like you need it to.
Why does this matter? Why should you “cater” to the Millennial worker? First, don’t think of it as catering. Think of it as delivering what that employee needs to be the best version of themselves for your company. This matters, because all Millennials have something inherently that your older workers had to learn. They know tech. They’ve never lived in a world without computers, and they grew up with mobile devices. They understand technology in a way no other generation can.
And there’s another bonus. Millennials may be accustomed to getting things “now,” but they are also accustomed to pretty much everything operating quickly and with a level of efficiency that comes from growing up in the computing age. They are accustomed to shopping and relationships and communication being tailored to “consumer experience” so they will inherently expect those kinds of setups. For the Millennial, creating a focused consumer experience is second nature, because that’s what they expect themselves.
The key word there is experience. Today’s marketing is not just about meeting a need or filling a want. It’s about delivering an experience. About communication, initiation, and response. A relationship. This is what most Millennials expect, to be met where they are and encountered rather than sold to. This applies both to employees and consumers.
And the initial encounter is only the beginning. You need to keep that relationship going, keep it positive, interesting, and engaging. This may sound like a lot of work, but when you enjoy the benefits, you will understand the worth.
So, manager, here’s the question. Are you willing to do what it takes to make the most of your employment and consumer opportunities with the Millennial generation, or will you allow your pre-conceived ideas of How It Should Be Done to cause you to lose business and manage disgruntled, underperforming employees?