Are You Ready to “Fire” One of Your Millennial Team Members?

I received a call from a client yesterday that started out with a familiar burst of pent up frustration saying, “I’m  ready to fire one of my Millennial team members!”  I was immediately curious which Millennial expectation had flipped his switch.

He proceeded to share that he did not really want to fire the talented Millennial.  In fact, it was just the opposite.  His Millennial employee had walked into his office and unceremoniously stated that he was bored with the work he was doing and didn’t see any future with the company. He was thinking of moving on soon. 

My client said that this team member had been with the company for 6 months and was a strong talent he did not want to lose, but did not know what to do to keep him.  Alas, he is not alone in his confusion.

Millennials (born between 1980 and 1999) are changing workplace expectations forever, and driving their managers crazy in the process. They are the first generation to have no expectation of retiring from the company they are working for today.  In fact, 91% of Millennials expect to stay at a job or position for fewer than three years, and even that is a long run for a Millennial.

This turnover rate can be very costly for organizations. The Society of Human Resources (SHRM) estimates that it typically costs 6-9 months of their salary to replace the person who leaves.  We talked about what the triggers were for his Millennial employee.  What he shared, matches with the new trends in Millennial expectations: 

*       74% expect high pay 
*       61% expect flexible work hours 
*       56% expect a promotion within a year 
*       50% expect more vacation or personal time   
Millennials typically decide in their first 30 days, if they will remain with a company for 6, 12, or 18 months.  It’s the challenge or opportunity for the leader to extend that tenure and get the return on talent investment.

I shared these three tips with him to get started:

1. Develop a Career Map Dialogue Blueprint™ with your Millennial in their first interview. Proactively build on it in monthly, or bi-weekly, check-ins.

2. Reward Millennials with something they highly value – TIME.  If your Millennial does a great job on a project give them some “Flex in their Day”.  Offer them an extra ½ hour to use at will, given scheduling considerations. They could take off early one day, extend their lunch hour, or come in late.

3. Cross-expose your Millennial to other areas of your business operations.  Let them “observe” or “sit-in” on an area that is outside their direct accountability, but in the path of their future, if they continue with the company.

Millennials are the talent of today and the future.  By 2020, they will be 40% of the labor force.  It is mission critical to engage these talented individuals.

I look forward to connecting with you one-on-one. Email me to reserve your complimentary 30 minutes personal Strategy Session and together we will explore how to make magic happen for your business.

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