Millennials want to be heard – it is that simple. Young people, especially in the UK, feel that the older generations do not understand them or listen to them. If you want to grow engagement within your organisation I suggest you try not to understand millennials but rather focus on listening and giving them a voice.
Millennials have many great ideas and opinions and it is my view that many ideas go to the graveyard because other generations don’t let the young people have a voice. When being listened to they expect your full focus as they don’t take kindly to being ignored so it becomes more paramount that you act on their voice.
For this to be successful – everything between a leader or older member of your team and the young person must be two-way. Ideas, opinions and final say must be communicated and discussed both ways. To initially encourage this, you may want to start two-way mentoring between a leader and a millennial.
If you’re a leader, I suggest when you’re looking to develop a millennial you do the following: Listen, watch & act.
By 2020 Millennials will represent over 50% of the workforce – but people are still trying to understand what a millennial is and more importantly why do they do what they do? I have spent the last six months telling leaders and organisations my views on the complex force of a millennial but it’s time to be honest – they’re not complex at all.
Over the next few weeks I will tell you the main reasons of what millennials want and now it’s time for the first request.
#1 They want to shape where they work
Millennials want to shape where they work because they need the freedom to express themselves – they’re very anti-corporate structure. Millennials want a flexible approach to work with regular feedback and encouragement. The environment must provide a good work-life balance as well as creating opportunities for growth and change.
Millennials don’t believe in a 9-5 working week, in fact often they are willing to work later but they look to be rewarded and recognised for their work. They want their environment to be surrounded by technology – the millennials are the first generation that are digital natives as they have been absorbed by new technologies.
If you want to be successful and attractive for millennials – you must re-think your environment as each employee will want a workplace that engages, inspires and motivates them each day. Each person is different but you can listen to them ALL and you can act – that is the power you have as a leader.
I have listened and watched a variety of individuals who feel they have been successful and there is one centre point to their success: gratitude. I would expect you to say that it must be easy for successful people to have the feeling of gratitude but a lot of what I see or they say, suggests they gained gratitude along the early part of their journey.
You are fortunate as you can write your own story – this is because everything is your choice which includes the feeling of being grateful. Gratitude is the centre of success as it is a huge factor for law of attraction. The term ‘Law of Attraction’ is the name given to the maxim “like attracts like”, basically meaning that if you have positive thoughts than positive actions will follow. Gratitude is no different to this – as it brings positivity to your outlook, leads to happiness and ultimately productivity.
This one change to your thoughts will help you eliminate fear and any negativity in your day, furthermore it will improve relationships as it will become an infectious feeling for those around you. The final benefit of gratitude is that it will increase your health and emotional wellbeing – helping you to be more focused and learn more efficiently.
Gratitude will grow and strengthen with deliberate, intentional use. To do this I suggest every day or week, list everything you’re grateful for – say each one out loud to yourself and the others around you each morning. Keep repeating this process – you will feel stillness and fulfilment come into your body that will set you up for the day.
To be a successful leader or coach: communication must be two ways. Two-way communication may occur horizontally or vertically in the organisation.
Leaders fear changing their message or admitting they’re wrong. These leaders are the losers – the ones who are watching the great leaders race past them. To be a great leader you must have strong communication skills – have a mind that is open to everything and attached to nothing. No one knows enough to have all the answers so you must shut up and listen. Listening means fully focusing on that person by listening to every word and making constant eye contact.
Two-way communication engages your partners by allowing instant feedback, seeking for clarification and interaction. It can help build trust, share ideas and promote increased comprehension of issues and concepts. You can understand your audience and how better to reach the people you are communicating with. This one change by listening and allowing your people to have a voice will be the start of a great culture providing better long-term results.
The final part to complete two-way communication is: you must act on everything that is said. You must not just delegate, you must leverage your control as an effective leader.
Millennials are tired of getting a bad reputation so I’m going to start the debate by saying: Millennials are the highest performing generation thus far. There’s countless reasons I feel the millennials are driving the new economy but I’ll name my top four.
Young people in the workplace are bringing high energy that is led from multi-tasking as a way of life. Millennials especially have grown up doing more than one thing at a time; such as talking to people, being on their phone and watching the television. This skill has related from being the first digital native generation.
Millennials can perform better when they can use technology in their workplace. As new technologies are getting introduced into the workplace, the millennials understand and can learn the software quicker than other generations. Communication is an area that is increasing the millennials performance, as the use of technology has made this generation better connected and more efficient.
The millennials want more work and social occasions which means that they are often networking and grinding out new opportunities for their organisation and themselves. The ‘9-5’ no longer exists for millennials which comes from a drive to fast track their career and high expectations of themselves, yet work-life balance is at the upmost importance too.
Young people, despite the myth that they’re selfish, are very team-oriented as they see that working together will give them a greater chance for success. This togetherness leads to sharing the responsibility, which encourages the entire team to work harder and improve their performance.
All negative stereotypes can be turned into positive attributes when properly understood. For this reason, they may be high maintenance as a generation but they could also be the highest performing. This makes it an exciting time to understand and utilise millennials to improve performance and future proof organisations.
We have a day where negativity sets in and it’s hard to get back to the other side. The only thoughts that matter are the ones you tell yourself, so tell yourself the following 15 phrases when negativity sets in:
Follow your heart
Never give up
Be a voice
Nothing is impossible
Focus on possibilities
Strive for progress
Always be positive
You are amazing
Live the moment
Change is good
Prove them wrong
You got this
Believe you can
Do it now
Be a champion
I feel like we spend so much of our life focusing on the things we need to be better at, the things we want to change and the things we need to learn but what if we focus on our strongest attributes.
If you’re going to be successful, you should focus on 2 or 3 strengths to make them even stronger – this will allow you to gain confidence and be positive in everything you set out to do. Normally, your strengths are related to what you love doing which will also improve motivation to achieve your goals.
Once you have focused on your strengths, this confidence and positivity surrounding you will allow you to spend time and energy where you can educate and grow into areas that you choose to commit to.
Every person including Steve Jobs to Bill Gates have glaring weaknesses and there is no doubt that they have not considered spending time to improve them. Of course, I could sit here trying to help them develop their weaknesses but why would we try to achieve that, when their strengths outweigh their weaknesses? You are no different – Jobs and Gates are valuable and so are you.
There is no need for you to put limitations or negative thoughts into your system, other people will do that, you have your strengths and you’re valuable because of your talent.
“Forget your weaknesses. Increase your strengths and be the most awesome you, that you can be” Tim Fargo