MillennialsIf you hadn’t already noticed, millennial workers (young people born anywhere from the early 1980s to the early 2000s) demonstrate far less employment stability than previous generations. They also seem to have different attitudes about money. Their motivation when it comes to work appears to be less connected to material reward than to personal growth and recognition. And rather than a clear path for career advancement, they tend to stay in jobs that they enjoy, and that challenge and nourish them as individuals. While this might all sound like a form of new age entitlement, it’s actually more the kind of fundamental shift in values that comes along every generation or so. Everything from the global economic crisis of 2008-2009 to a lifestyle saturated with technology has been held responsible for this shift. But whatever the reason, millennials have proved very hard for employers to retain for long periods of time, and the correspondingly sharp turnover rates are hurting many businesses’ bottom lines.

[quote style=”boxed”]A huge number of millennials have expressed a desire to be entrepreneurs one day.[/quote] Here’s how to buck the trend:

Introduce Cool Projects

Millennials may not be in it for the long haul with your company, but this newest generation of workers loves a good project. After all, a huge number of millennials have expressed a desire to be entrepreneurs one day. What better way to get some experience in running your own company than by heading up a project for your current employer. If you’ve got an especially competent young employee on your hands, you may even want to let them pick the project.

Collaborations and Partnerships

Young employees who grew up surrounded by innovative marketing campaigns that saw diverse businesses partnering with artists of every imaginable style and discipline will pounce on the idea of creating something similar for your company; and, depending on your line of business, such partnerships could be a huge boon for you as well. Encourage young workers to reach out to their favorite brands to see if those businesses and yours might be able to help each other somehow. If it works, it’s a win-win. If it doesn’t, well, your contact list will grow and grow.

Flexibility

Nothing drives off millennials like a rigid, hierarchical, and monotonous workplace. Come to think of it–that would drive off pretty much anyone! But even more so than previous generations, young employees today are extremely sensitive to flexibility in time off and work scheduling. Thanks largely to the ubiquity of smartphones, laptops, and tablets, millennial workers can be productive anytime, anywhere. So, for them, there’s no such thing as a traditional 9-5 workday. There’s just work. As far as they’re concerned, it doesn’t matter when things get done, as long as they get done.

Show Your Appreciation

Since young employees tend to value personal growth over compensation, if you want them to stick around for longer, commit to putting forth a special effort to make them feel personally recognized and appreciated. While this may sound exhausting, remember, they’re not just millennials–they’re young people: teenagers and young adults. As such, they will thrill to the kind of positive reinforcement you’ll be serving up. You might even awaken a kind of familial loyalty in your young employees that will encourage them to stick around as long as their predecessors.

For more information on workplace management and employment-related issues, please visit us at Masiello Employment Services.