According to a U.S. Census Bureau study in 2016, millennials are about to become the nation’s largest living adult generation. With millennials taking up a large part of the workforce, it will only be a matter of time before they also begin to move into leadership roles.
The term, “millennial” no longer represents the teens and young adults we think of in this generation. Now, the millennial age demographic is in their 20s. In fact, the oldest in this age group are already moving into their mid-30s. Because of their stage in life, careers are a main focus of millenials’ lives. And in typical millennial fashion, they are doing things a little differently.
Millennials Career Expectations
Millennials have many expectations of their company and their leaders. Common expectations include:
Flexible work arrangements
Retirement investment options
Transparent relationships with their superiors
Yet, none of these are their most important expectation. According to a Gallup Study, 87% of millennials want “professional or career growth and development opportunities” in their job as well. Many times, if this expectation is not met, millennials will leave the company to find another job. That said, development opportunities can come in many shapes and sizes from formal training programs to mentorship and collaboration. The millennial generation grew up with the world of knowledge at their fingertips thanks to Google and Youtube. Learning new things, often by self-teaching, has been a key part of their lives. Because of this, they expect a workplace that will allow them to continue to learn and develop throughout their entire career.
Another key factor in millennial’s expectations is the belief that anyone can be anything. This generation has seen the rise of self-made brands and celebrities. Thanks to Youtube, reality tv shows, blogs, and social media, millenials have watched “the kid next door” grow up into successful icons living out their dreams. This mentality still holds true for the millenials who pursue more traditional careers. They are looking ahead to advancement and their future, and they want to work for companies who have this mindset as well.
Millennials Desire Meaningful Feedback
It’s clear that millenials want to have all the tools they need to excel in their careers both now and in the future. In addition to development opportunities, millennials also want consistent and meaningful feedback. According to the Gallup survey, How Millennials Want to Work and Live, a mere (17%) of millennials say the feedback they currently receive is meaningful.
One-time per year performance reviews do not meet this expectation. Millennials want comprehensive, unbiased feedback on an ongoing basis.They thrive when feedback provides them with actionable information and career and personal coaching.
This desire for meaningful feedback ties in closely with the desire for transparent relationships with their superiors. They rebel against being just another cog in the corporate wheel, defined by their current job title. The good news is that this transparency means that they’re open to honest feedback, both good and bad. Having employees who want to grow and change is an amazing asset for companies who learn how to deliver and empower their millennials.
It’s vital for companies to think outside the box to equip their leadership-bound millennials. Tools like 360 Feedback & Coaching can give millennials the potential mentoring and feedback they crave. Let’s set up a call to talk about how you are grooming the next generation.