Challenge Yourself to Think Like a Millennial

This is the second of a three-part series about millennials and how they can be beneficial to your business. Last week, I discussed misconceptions about millennials, so this week I’d like to talk about rebranding our initiatives for them.
Finding Your “Why”

We should all have a “why” but to be honest, before I worked with millennials, I frankly hadn’t given it much thought. I went to college, got a degree, and I wanted to be successful. But when people asked me why, all I could really give them was a blanket statement. I wanted to do well in work, make good money, be able to support myself and my future family, and that was it. It was when a millennial really challenged me that I had to change my thinking and recognize that I needed to be able to offer them more as a manager.

One millennial asked, “Why do you get up in the morning?” I hadn’t even thought about it. Millennials want to know that they have purpose, to be able to see themselves progress into a career, and to understand the “why” to what we do and how they can do it so they can be successful.

It’s part of their career journey, part of their development, which has been very, very different from my own developing years. Many of us didn’t have to answer that question and we hadn’t really given it much thought. Today, I can confidently tell anyone I work with—millennial or otherwise—that I get up in the morning because I like to help personally and professionally develop my team. I like to help them reach their goals and succeed with the goals that I set for them. I want to see them grow and achieve levels they may never have thought they could. It’s my job, my duty, and my passion to get up every morning to help them.

“Millennials want to know that they have purpose”
Fun in the Workplace

It’s often said that millennials just want to have fun. Don’t we all? We work more than we do anything else in this life, and my thought is that if people really aren’t having any fun, then they already are, or could become, pretty miserable. Really understanding what “fun” means, especially to this newer generation entering the workforce, is so extremely important.

It used to be that “happy hours” were where people would go to have fun, blow off some steam, and talk about the week and the challenges we faced. Honestly, millennials may not find happy hours fun. Yes, happy hours are great for networking and camaraderie, but millennials are looking for something different.

I challenge you to really challenge the status quo by asking them what they want to do for fun. Don’t be surprised if their answer is something like an escape room, where they have to think, or giving back to a nonprofit or volunteering. Remember that millennials want a purpose and to know that what they’re doing is making an impact in the world today. By you changing your initiatives and understanding what fun is for them, it will prove to those millennials that you care as much about the bottom line as you do about impacting and benefiting the world.

Thank you so much for your time. If you have any other questions about this or other topics, please feel free to contact me. I’d love to help.