Millennials, those born between 1980 and 2000, account for approximately 36 percent of the workforce. Unfortunately, just 28.9 percent of millennials reported being engaged in the workplace, according to a 2015 Gallup poll – the least engaged of any generation. Get your millennial workforce motivated by focusing on the factors that most influence them:
Sense of Purpose
A common desire for millennial workers is to feel like they are doing worthwhile work. Sixty percent of millennials reported that a sense of purpose is what drew them to their current employer, according to a 2015 white paper “Unlocking Millennial Talent.” Motivate your millennial workers by communicating the value the company adds to customers or the community as a whole.
Millennials crave consistent communication from their managers and updates on their progress. Forty-two percent of them stated they would prefer weekly feedback meetings with their managers. This is two times higher than other generations. Schedule regular sit-down meetings with your workers to clarify your expectations and offer suggestions for improvement, as well as recognition for their strengths. Knowing where they stand can help make millennials more motivated to produce better results.
It’s important to remember that millennials have always had technology as a major part of their lives, so they enjoy having the opportunity to stay connected with other people. Take advantage of this desire by implementing real-time communication systems like chat as opposed to email. This can be especially beneficial at motivating your millennial employees if there isn’t much opportunity for face-to-face interactions because they’ll still feel a sense of teamwork with you and their colleagues.
Ambition is a common shared trait among millennial workers. They have more career options than previous generations, and likely grew up being actively encouraged and told they could do whatever they put their minds to. Keep your millennials engaged by investing in them professionally; offer mentoring programs or skills training to show that you have a vested interest in helping them advance their careers.
Sense of Accomplishment
Many millennials have an entrepreneurial spirit, even when they work as employees. They see their peers wind up as CEOs of tech startups, so the idea of a hierarchy in the workplace in which only “important” people make a difference can be off-putting to them. Capitalize on their desire to be active contributors by gradually increasing their responsibilities and giving them ownership of tasks or projects. As they feel a sense of accomplishment, they’ll become even more motivated to continue contributing.
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