Adapting To The Changing Needs Of The Millennials

After almost a decade of corporations trying to understand the millennials, there are many organisations out there who are still finding it difficult to adapt to their ever changing needs because with each new batch of millennials entering the work force their needs tend to differ ever so slightly from the previous batches and the bar to keeping them contented becomes ever increasingly higher.
According to a study done by Gallup on the Gen-Ys, despite having a better work environment as well as better starting pay when compared to their predecessors, the millennials are still the most disengaged group of people in the work force. As a highly educated and technologically connected group, the millennials’ approach to the work place is strangely paradoxical.

On The Surface

The millennials seem like highly individualistic people apparent from their obsession of wanting to achieve the best things in life -within the shortest amount of time possible, they believe that their own growth is highly important and they should also receive proper recognition and rewards for their efforts.

Underneath It All

We’ve observed that they tend thrive when being put in an environment where team members are more collaborative than competitive and are driven by a greater purpose.

Perhaps the solution to the challenge shouldn’t be so much on answering the question:

‘what do the millennials want at work’

but more of answering the question

‘how do millennials prefer to work’

Millennials have always valued their freedom. Many organisations understands that in order for them to retain their millennial talent they would need to allow some measure of freedom however their understanding of freedom is only limited to task freedom which is the need be empowered to take control of the tasks given to them – and not be micro-managed.

However these days as the millennials evolve we see a trend of them wanting a freedom with what they choose to do with their time as well. Gone were the days where people strived for the ideal work life-balance but rather more and more people are striving for work life integration -a situation in which both work and personal blends together so seamlessly that it enables them to achieve more things in life.

What this means for organisations is to find a sweet spot between the level of freedom their millennial talents are looking for (which will vary from individual to individual) and the level of freedom the organisation can afford to give. Upon finding that sweet spot orgnisations can then implement functional changes that can impact the lives of

Other than wanting more freedom to do more things with their time, millennials also look for institutions with cultures that enables them to grow both on an individual level as well as on a professional level. This concept could be implemented through career progress tracking that clearly shows the steps the individual can take to progress further in his career, as well as doing away with a strict annual review system and replacing it with continuous communication and instant feedback throughout the year, as well as providing enough support structure so that they can avoid mistakes that will set them back.

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