The millennial generation today is causing the top CEOs of the world sleepless nights. We go to any forum and there are either of the two conversations which take place: engaging millennials at the workplace and building capabilities to succeed in this VUCA world.
When the conversation drifts to the millennials, they always quote examples of the millennials who have either successfully established a new process to help business or have immensely helped the organization in establishing a technological intervention, and which would have saved the company millions of dollars.
As an HR professional, if you have ever been part of these conversations, you too would have wondered about the exceptional cases of younger working force taking charge and accomplishing great things within a very short period of time.
You must have also asked yourself, what sets apart these go-getters from rest of the millennial generation? And most importantly, if there was a way that youngsters would display the same exemplary behavior within your organization.
And the answer is, ‘Yes, they can but most importantly you can help them do it’.
Developing a sense of purpose
It is extremely important that as part of career counseling, you must help the millennial in your office develop a sense of purpose. You could do this with small things like asking about his short term and long term goals. These goals than can be bind together and would lead towards a specific direction, maybe a career path that the young employee would want to chart out for himself.
Giving people the freedom to fail
Organizations have to give their employees the freedom to fail. They must not hold against the inexperience of a person but should have a considerable risk-taking ability that they must exhibit in circumstances where the need is felt. Mistakes and failures differ for most individuals in the company, and which is why the learning to is different. But from an organizational standpoint, the insight which one would gain because of one’s learning, and which upon applying could determine the future of the organization as a whole.
Knowledge is the key
Emerging technologies like artificial intelligence, gamification, cloud computing are altering the workplaces. They are not only helping digitize the workplaces but would also require people who are extremely skilled in these domains. As an HR professional, it is not just important to scout for the right people, but also identify the people within your organization who could be upskilled or reskilled. Then, using AI and cloud based systems, one could simply map the learning and development requirements of the individual in the workforce. For the same the organization could make use of virtual classrooms, learning on the go, gamifying on the job learning.
Let them dream big
Many organization today have developed employee engagement programs, which help put the millennials and their ideas in the limelight. When they enter the workforce, they might or might not have in-depth knowledge of the organization’s business, but what they do bring in with themselves is a new perspective or a way of looking at things.
Using the principles of design thinking, an organization could design an employee engagement program with the aim of providing millennials a platform to brainstorm and ideate. The senior leadership of the organization could also join in as observers or mentors.
Communicate in their language
Most millennials are digital natives, which means that they understand cloud like no other. Their expectations from technology today is that it should understand it. Many organizations have realized this and hence are ensuring that the digital transformation remains the number one agenda. Once an organization builds a technology platform enabling seamless conversations between the digital natives and digital immigrants, a flatter organization which is much more democratized would emerge, and this would lead to millennials being heard. And since it would be completely digital, they would also be more comfortable and open to engaging with the work and also the leadership because of it.
Let us know about how much of your efforts towards carving out go-getters from millennials succeed.