Practical Leadership Tips for Fast-growing Millennial Teams

Practical Leadership Tips for Fast-Growing Millennial Teams
July 20, 2017 Toohey Reid

We’ve seen a huge shift in the labour force over the last few decades. The growth of technology and expansion of online platforms has paved the way for an abundance of new roles across many industries. It has also led to an increase in millennial teams.

Studies show that Generation Y (people born between 1981 and 1997) will make up more than 75% of today’s workforce by 2025.

But there’s one problem with hiring these forward-thinking, tech-savvy souls: they need more. More engagement, more stimulation, more flexibility and more sense of achievement.

A study by The Brookings Institution showed that millennials…

  • Are driven by social responsibility, ethical issues and environmental reverence
  • Have a stronger brand loyalty for companies who focus on the aforementioned things
  • Place a higher value on experiences over material possessions
  • Have the ability to build communities around shared interests, rather than geographical proximity, bridging otherwise disparate groups (again, thanks to the the rise of technology and online platforms)

Below are our practical tips for leading fast-growing millennial teams.

1. Implement flexible work hours & spaces

Everybody has different times of day where they are most productive, so why should we subject them to the same set of hours? Fair enough, some jobs require staff to be present at specific hours of the day (most commonly, 9-5). However, if your employees prefer to start earlier/finish earlier, or work four slightly longer days and have a three-day weekend, you might want to consider letting them.

Likewise with working spaces. If your business permits, allowing your staff to work remotely some days will help combat their itch to get out of the office and potentially decrease the amount of ‘sick’ days they take.

2. Understand that they might not want to climb the ladder

Gone are the days in which people start a job in a specific company after high school and work their butt off to get to the top position. While this may still be the dream for some, studies have shown that a decent amount of millennial workers would much rather stay in a lower position, if it’s a role they enjoy. Accepting that not all of your staff will want to climb the ladder, and giving them the option to opt out early on will ease the stress for both parties involved.

3. Provide learning opportunities they’re interested in

In saying that, providing ongoing learning opportunities for your staff should still very much be part of your business structure. However, instead of these opportunities being to gain a higher position, look into other ways of enhancing their skills. Finding out which aspect of business your staff are most interested in, and creating opportunities that align with this will allow your team’s total skillset to grow and business to flourish.

For example, instead of focusing on helping them to learn as many skills as possible, help them become a master of one or two things. Ultimately, an expert team is better than ‘jack of all trades’ who have a surface level understanding of a lot of things.

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4. Let their passions seep into their work

Stemming on from the previous point, and as outlined in the infographic above, Millennials are more likely to stay in jobs they are in some way passionate about. This isn’t a difficult one, as passions and skill sets generally go hand-in-hand. Allowing your staff to express their passions (to some extent) in their work is a surefire way of getting them to stick around. Without a purpose or love for what they do, they will quickly move on to opportunities that satisfy their needs, and you’ll be left with a high staff turnover rate. Not to mention the cost of finding their replacement!

Are you looking for professional advice and insight? Toohey Reid is Brisbane’s leading chartered accounting firm. Give us a call on (07) 3221 1055 or send us an online enquiry today to find out how we can help you!

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