8 ways to attract and retain young talent

According to Steelcase’s 2006 survey Millennials already make up 21% of the workforce in the US. This number will only go north in a couple of years. I assume by now you have realized that young employees are not conformists, they don’t want to play by the old rules. So, whether you like it or not, you have to cater to the needs of Millennials if you want to stay in business.

Previously we discussed that the values of Millennials are not drastically different than those of the previous generations’. Today I would like to give you a couple of quick tips on how to make Gen Ys happy at the workplace. First, let’s go over some of the important characteristics of Millennials:

  • They are the first generation raised with the Internet. Therefore, they are great communicators and collaborators.
  • They have an inner desire for self expression.
  • They have a “can-do spirit.” They deeply believe that they can make a difference.
  • Their ability to multitask is legendary.
  • They are urban nomads. They can work from anywhere as long as they have a laptop and a phone.
  • They want to live a purposeful life.
  • They grew up playing video games. So they are used to achieving success after many failed attempts.
  • They respect experts.

Without further due, here are the 8 tips to attract and retain Millennials at the workplace:

  1. Invest in your IT systems: They come to business world pre-wired. They expect technology to be available to them 24/7.
  2. Create communal workspaces: They are used to collaborate both online and offline. Transform idle spaces such as your kitchen into spaces where people can get together and work.
  3. Invest in online collaboration tools: To further the second point, make sure you provide them with online tools through which they can collaborate with other employees.
  4. Build committees for them and put them in charge: They want to make a difference. Give them small responsibilities by letting them form and run committees.
  5. Give them flexibility: Do not force them to be 9-to-5 employees. They are equally productive when they work from a coffee shop.
  6. Demonstrate how their work contributes to the big picture: They want to know what they do is important. Even though their input is small, let them know that it is vital.
  7. Build-in enough time to review their work: They are good at multitasking. Still, chances of them making errors are high.
  8. Assign them mentors: Contrary to what many people think, Millennials admire the expertise of senior employees. Match experienced employees with young ones. If not, make sure your senior employees are perceived as available all the time.

Companies that do these things are more likely to attract and retain young talent. Do you know any company that is great at these things?

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