Do you really know what your millennial employees are looking for at work? Or are you just taking your best guess?

According to this article from Gallup, “…millennials strive for a life well-lived. They want good jobs — ones with 30-plus hours of work a week and regular paychecks from employers. They also want to be engaged in those jobs, meaning they are emotionally and behaviorally connected to them.”

Unfortunately, many employees (especially millennials) rarely feel comfortable offering up tips to their bosses. How can you help your millennial employees get the most out of their position and give you 110% in return?

Take into account that millennials want to break free from old workplace policies and often expect managers and leaders to do the same. They see work and life as closely intertwined.

In the Gallup article mentioned above, Gallup found that 62% of millennials who feel like they can’t talk to their manager about non-work-related issues intend to find a new position within a year.

And a whopping 87% say career growth opportunities have a big impact on whether they stay with a company or not as well. Millennials don’t expect you to bend to their will, they’re just looking for a little more compromise.

Here’s your opportunity to “be in the know” and understand your millennial employees better so you can grow together.  

How Well Do You Understand Millennial Workers?

  • Millennial employees want to be in the loop. If your business is operating on a need-to-know-basis, it’s practically a guarantee that your millennial employees aren’t happy.

    Employees usually don’t care one way or the other if they’re not involved in a company’s decision-making. They know that’s not in their job descriptions. But you can bet your bottom dollar they resent being kept in the dark about your company’s plans for the future and the direction things are going in.

    Millennials prefer transparency to secrecy (who doesn’t it?) because it promotes trust. People do their best work for a business when they feel trusted.
  • Millennials despise the open office concept. We know, we know: the open office model is supposed to promote communication and collaboration and all that good stuff. But that’s not how your millennial employees see it.

    When it comes to the millennial generation, the open office concept erodes trust. Plus, a lot of workers in the past have already made a valid argument that the noise and distractions of an open office concept tend to stall productivity rather than enhance it.

    Nobody grows up hoping they’ll work in a cube, not even millennials, but they’re not dreaming of working in an open office day in and day out either.
  • Millennials value time more than money. That isn’t to say millennials don’t value money, but it’s not a secret that employees dislike it when they’re consistently held 1.5 hours past quitting time.

    And they certainly don’t like being bombarded with late evening and weekend emails and phone calls. Your millennial employees really wish you wouldn’t do that.

    Millennials respect your time and understand that projects often require teamwork to complete. But they also expect projects to be completed promptly and within work hours. Believe it or not, millennials want you to enjoy your weekend as much as they want to enjoy theirs.
  • Millennials are hungry to learn from you. Remember how we previously mentioned that millennials don’t job hop if they feel like there are opportunities for growth within your business?

    This is where you want to take notes if you want to give your employees another reason to stick around.

    One surefire way to make sure your millennial employees stick around for more than a year is to provide them with opportunities to learn new skills on the job. This not only keeps your employees engaged but it benefits your business as well because it means your staff is consistently improving their skills.
  • Millennials want a pat on the back. Nobody expects to be praised for every little thing they do but if millennials’ hard work and sacrifice goes unnoticed day after day they aren’t going to be happy. Can you really fault anyone for that?

    Millennials seek encouragement and feedback. Not because they need their egos stroked 24/7, but because they value feedback and see it as a necessity for making  improvements.

Establishing healthy employee relationships with all generations is important to most businesses nowadays—ERP consulting companies, wholesale distributors, nonprofits. The list goes on.

You could accuse the millennial generation of being a little selfish and maybe even a little high-maintenance. But you should keep in mind that they’re a generation who wants more out of life. And they believe they can get it.

We can’t speak for everyone, but wouldn’t you like to have an office full of go-getters like that? Employees who want the best for your business and believe they can help you achieve your goals? We know we do!