One of the most frequent questions I get asked from clients is: “What do millennials look for and how can we attract them?"
You will have probably seen the infographics that are circulating outlining different generations in the workplace. Millennials are often categorised as narcissistic and entitled as opposed their work-centric predecessors. The huge benefit to the industry that I recruit for, is that they are hugely tech-savvy and open to change – great for tech start-ups right? Millennials feel empowered that they can achieve anything they want – I, personally, have grown up in a generation where a large percentage of my time is spent using some form of device, where everything is available at the click of a button, where taking several photos of your own face is the norm! So the problem we have is how can we engage with this generation as a prospective or current employee? Someone who is less driven financially but more driven by the culture and the ethos of an employer?
A Deloitte study found that the most important thing that millennials look for when choosing a job is work/life balance, second was the opportunities to progress. Something I hear daily. Also near the top were flexible working and sense of meaning from the job. Over the last 12 months, here at Finlay James (with a majority of millennials in our workforce) we have implemented many internal strategies to fulfil these requirements. We have introduced flexible working (unheard of in recruitment!) and a clear career internal promotion plan with targets to achieve.
So what does this have to do with Barcelona FC you may ask! I recently went to Barcelona and outside Gaudi's Cathedral there was an exhibition; stating their five values as a club.
- Respect - for others.
- Effort - leading to achievable targets that might otherwise appear distant.
- Ambition - desire to achieve the maximum performance.
- Teamwork - embodying the team as a collective or an individual and finally, my favourite;
- Humility - being clear about your values and maintain them in situations when you are more successful.
If everyone within a team embodies these values you will increase engagement as a whole. I couldn't have thought of five better values for a team. The key is that everyone needs to embody these - from a CEO to the cleaner! When people come in to our Head Office in Manchester they always mention how they get a great vibe of positivity. Yes, we have a great workspace but we also have our own values that we try to incorporate on a daily basis - Positive, Professional and Expert.
Engagement is a choice. You have a written contract and you also have a psychological contract. The written contract outlines your working hours but it doesn't outline your commitment to the job in hand or your loyalty, that can only come from within and if, as an employee, you are truly engaged.
So how can you increase engagement with millennials? Stop thinking about how many hours someone works a day and think about if you had really engaged employees how productive they would be in the time they were in the office. How could that increase your profit? What do you have in place to offer internal progression? Do you have a nice working environment and clear values within your business that your employees can follow and set as a benchmark?
If you have any questions about how to re-engage milliennials and what they look for please feel free to contact me.