Millennials in the Workplace

Navigating the Workplace Wonderland: Three Ways to Leverage Millennials’ Drive to Succeed

The graduating Class of 2014 is entering the workforce this spring, and, as a group, they are extremely motivated and excited. They want to learn. They want to move up quickly. They want to achieve things and show results.

Picture Alice from Alice in Wonderland, when she comes to a fork in the road and asks the Cheshire Cat:

`Would you tell me, please, which way I ought to go from here?’

`That depends a good deal on where you want to get to,’ said the Cat.” – Lewis Carroll, Alice in Wonderland

Like Alice, the Class of 2014 can’t move on to the next role without understanding what they want to do, and what they need to do to get there. While we’d like to think that the work-world isn’t as chaotic as Wonderland, we can’t deny that there are so many possible career paths that it can be hard to know what to do next. For organizations that invest in Millennials and help them to advance, they are likely to not only win the war for talent, but hold on to it as well.

How do organizations leverage the Class of 2014’s motivation while also helping them to develop their skills?

1.       Handle Criticism as Coachable Moments

The Class of 2014 is looking for regular feedback, and needs this feedback in order to develop. It’s important that your managers are giving timely, constructive criticism, and treating these situations as “coachable moments”. This approach will provide the Class of 2014 with the advice they need to succeed in their current roles, and advance sooner rather than later.

2.       Provide Strong Mentorship and Advice

There’s no question that Millennials are eager to get their hands dirty and show everyone what they can do. However, they also (rightly) understand that, in order to be successful, they need guidance. Their mentors will impact their success, and the success of the company. Therefore, it’s critical that organizations ensure that managers are able to provide training, mentorship and advice on advancement.

3.       Ensure Managers are Invested

A small investment can turn into a huge return, and this is why managers need to be held accountable for employees’ progression. When managers are invested, they will provide the resources and the encouragement needed to ensure that the Class of 2014 succeeds. Managers can’t be everywhere at once, so give them access to technology that helps to give them visibility, so that they can coach and reward employees when its most relevant.

Navigating the work world requires learning along the way too. It is difficult, but with good coaching, strong mentorship, and invested managers, Millennials will eventually develop their skills, succeed in their roles, and ultimately drive the bottom line at your company.

Interested in finding out more about how to motivate and develop the Class of 2014? Download our Class of 2014 whitepaper, Your Next Generation of Top Talent.


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