With some 45 percent of U.S. jobs now held by Millennials, it is essential for executives to know how to handle a rapidly changing workforce with different talents and priorities than previous and later generations.
But Millennials are just one component of understanding individuals, teams and clients.
Key to building intergenerational effectiveness is having a grasp of the skill levels and motivations of the three main blocks of current employees, grouped together by birth years.
- Baby Boomers 1946-1963
- Gen Xers 1964-1979
- Millennials 1980-1999
Understanding generational differences will have a significant impact on how executives define and react to disruption; how they identify the next crop of leaders; and how they ferret out Millennial talent that will be an asset in selling to the company’s demographic.
The discussion centered on survey results of Millennials conducted by Resultance, Inc. and interactive polling of workshop participants.
So what exactly does this generation – frequently characterized as entitled and difficult – want?
When asked what elements were most attractive to university graduates when choosing to join a company, 45% of workshop participants said it was the promise of a fast promotion, while only 18% of Millennials previously polled agreed. A whopping 78% of Millennials were most concerned about salary and benefits.
“These are the Millennials just coming out of college…This is a shift because now we’re seeing the end of the Millennial generation. We’re seeing more Gen Xer parents with these kids. And Gen Xer parents have more of a conversation about finances and worrying about how are we going to afford this because these kids are post-recession. So they’re coming out and having a stronger conversation about salary and benefits.”
– Anna Liotta
- Millennials value compensation highly. If being wooed by more than one employer, they would by a wide margin (78.13%) choose the company with the best salary and benefits
- Millennials are team players. Again by a significant margin (78.13%), they see the most important personal attribute as being collaborative. And more than 60% said the most important quality for business success is being a team player
- Millennials have standards. The top three attributes they thought an employer would expect were: being coachable (54.69%); a good attitude (53.13%); and a solid work ethic (51.56%)
- Millennials need to find their work fulfilling. More than 76% said not believing in their work would be the top reason for leaving
“You ignore the relationship between Boomer Parents and their Millennial kids at your peril. They’re in constant communication and contact, about five to eight times a day texting back and forth.”
– Anna Liotta