Wednesday, April 20, 2011

6 Ways to Retain Millennials

According to the Employment Policy Foundation, our country is heading into a labor shortage of approximately 35 million skilled and educated workers. That is why, for many companies, the focus has turned to retaining Millennials. Millennials are those born between 1980 and 2000 and make up the generation that follows Generation X.

Millennials are moving into management roles at a fast pace. While they can easily be trained to fulfill leadership roles, it does take some work to retain them. Below are 6 tips to help managers effectively retain millennial talent.

1.Constant Contact. A recent survey revealed that 60 percent of Millennials want to hear from their manager at least once a day. They need to communicate often.

2. Praise Culture. This generation tends to need praise more often than previous generations. They need to feel valued on a regular basis, or they will leave.

3.Rapid Advancement Alternatives. If a millennial is truly qualified for a promotion, offer it to them versus someone who has just simply been there longer. If they are not qualified for a promotion but are starting to feel restless, find alternatives to a promotion to reengage them such as starting a company blog or contributing to the company newsletter.

4. Cubicle Shackles. Millennials crave the flexibility to work anytime from anywhere and many companies are overhauling their policies to accommodate this, using flex time as a perk for Millennials.

5. Mentor Programs. Millennials have grown up with an abundance of guidance from parents, teachers and society. They enter the workforce expecting the same amount of hand holding. If your company doesn’t offer a formal mentorship program, create one.

6. Leadership Training. There is a resurgence of Leadership & Management training programs simply because Millennials want and need them. Unfortunately, many companies still do not offer such programs and Millennials are more than ready to leave for companies that do.

Millennials are not all that different from older generations, they just have a lower tolerance. A Boomer might put up with a job where they feel undervalued or bored, but a Millennial will not.

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