Gaining a better understanding of what matters most to Gen Y (aka Millennials) will help you to engage and retain our “soon to be”a majority of the workforce. Realistically speaking, the future of our businesses is dependent upon how we engage, nurture and develop our younger generation of workers, that being Gen Y. As this generation floods our workforce, we need have a much better appreciation of who they are and what they value in order to engage and retain our future leaders. The top business value drivers for Gen Y are technology, flexibility, training opportunities, feedback, and transparency.
Gen Y is our very first fully digital generation, and as such, technology is at the top of their values. If your organization isn’t using technology to promote communication, collaboration, and efficiency in the workplace then you might want to re-evaluate your infrastructure to better engage your workforce. According to Forbes in the article titled, The Expanding Roles of Millennials in the Workplace, “Millennials are quite committed to their work, but they do not value face time the way other generations do. They are concerned that the reluctance to embrace all forms of technology creates inefficiencies which impact their strong goal to better manage their work.”
Generation Y wants freedom of choice and flexibility when it comes to where and when they’ll work. Cubicle farms will disengage this generation – GenY is far better given the choice to work remotely when needed and in settings that are conducive to creative thinking and innovation.
3. Training Opportunities
Generation Y holds training and professional development in high regard. GenY seeks out opportunities to learn so that they can improve their performance to become better leaders. That’s not to say that they like to learn by traditional methods. Gen Y has much shorter attention spans and they prefer fast-paced training as opposed to long drawn out methods.
As confident as GenY appears, they actually prefer frequent feedback to keep tabs on how they’re doing. Remember, Gen Y grew up with the Internet, so they’re accustomed to instant gratification.
Gen Y values openness and transparency and therefore wants to “be in the know” about the decisions made by your organization. They also want to know how their roles contribute to your organization’s overall mission and objectives.
Although this may take some effort on our part, there’s no doubt that the end result of our efforts will be a more engaged GenY workforce, and an engaged workforce is a retainable workforce!
Susan Distasio | eLearning Industry Crusader | ePath Learning, Inc.
About the Author: Susan Distasio is an eLearning Industry Crusader focused on advocating for advancement and change in the eLearning and professional development industry. An avid seeker of knowledge and continuous improvement, Susan is happy to share her research, observations, and thoughts regarding “all things related to learning and development.” When she’s not out on the learning crusade, Susan can be found with the wind in her hair riding her Harley or simply enjoying life with her husband and her Siamese cat named Elvis, as well as with family and friends.