Hire A Millennial

…but make sure you have a killer HR team too.

Millennials are taking over the workforce and its no secret. As of today, one-in-three American workers are Millennials. In fact, we have the largest share of the workforce, event over Generation X. Take a look for yourselves below:

Millennials in the workforce from 2014 to a projected 2020 share.                                                                                             Image Source: UNC Kenan-Flagler Business School

And we are only growing. The U.S. Bureau of Labor predicts that:

“by 2030, this hyper-connected, tech savvy generation will make up 75% of the workforce.”

Millennials make excellent employees because:

1. We are a generation of problem solvers. If a certain type of technology does not work for our lifestyle, we quickly seek replacement.

2. We are collaborators. We would rather work on a team and bounce ideas off of one another than individually. This has an affect on our work and makes it less linear than those before us.

3. We are diverse. We have grown up all over, in broken-homes, loving homes, four homes, and more. Our perspectives of the world are varied and valuable.

4. We want to make a difference. Unlike generations before us, our driving force in finding employment is not income. Although in our consideration set, we also look for ways to improve ourselves and aspects of the world around us more than prior generations.

5. We are amazing networkers. We have grew up with the word networking on our minds. Most of us spend just as much time on LinkedIn as on Facebook or other social media sites. Millennials have been taught the importance of networking for a company and for ones own good. As a matter of fact, we have increasingly been extended job offers as a result of networking over traditional application methods.

A Pitch From The Millennials:

To get a perspective on why millennials see themselves as valuable to the workforce. I interviewed 10 millennials to get a diverse perspective on what they think that they  bring into the workforce. I identified the 10 millennials by millennial-like characteristics that they could be defined as: the driven individual, the technician, the problem-solver, the communicator, the global citizen, and the entrepreneur.

The millennials interviewed all came to similar conclusions more or less stating that they in general have a broader perspective of the world and the technology and communication that sustains society.

Sarah Smith, “The Driven Individual,” states: “I think the greatest attribute I will bring into the workforce is tenacity, specifically in seeking to reach my career goals. As a millennial, I think we have a more liberal outlook on life and in breaking barriers (generally speaking), which fuels this determination to continue pursuing our goals as individuals and as a group in an ever-changing society. With millennials, I think we have this understanding that “the sky’s the limit” with hard work and persistence.”

What is the drawback to hiring millennials?

Millennials can bring a lot to the table, from problem-solving to networking skills, and everything in between. Then what is the issue here? Since millennials are unique in what they can bring to the table, their visions of what a workplace environment should be like is much different than all previous generations, which can lead to a conflict of interest. While millennials prefer team work and flexibility, other generations prefer individually focused work and structured positioning.

Hire millennials anyway. Your business will thank you. They are good at what they do. Does this mean stop hiring or fire other generations? Of course not. The solution is to know your work culture

Think critically:

What generations are working for you?

What do they look for in employment?

How can you alter your work culture to fit the needs of all of your employees?

Who is hiring millennials and is doing everything right?

Two companies that are hitting it out of the park with millennials and developing the appropriate work culture for them without disrupting the rest of their employees are Johnson & Johnson and General Electric. Both of these companies have developed groups within the company to answer the same questions I just prosed to you under ‘Think critically.’ These companies’  groups developed everything from computers that would give feedback as to how employees were doing (millennials love a sense of measure) to tasks in the everyday work environment that stimulates the cooperation of different generations so that they can develop understandings for each other, rather than stereotypes.

So go ahead: Hire millennials. However, not without reexamining your company’s work culture.

Featured Image Source: Emily Cameron


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