If You Want to Attract and Keep Millennials at Work, Make Sure You Have the Right Boss

Hannah Greenwood | | Employee Engagement

millennials at workMillennials at work have certain expectations that, if they aren't met, will lead to their departure. A good boss is one of those expectations.

A boss’ job is to direct and lead his team towards a common goal that is consistent with the overall business message. A boss’ job is to instruct and give necessary feedback to improve the workings of employees. Most importantly, a boss’ job is to protect the belief in what the company stands for and encourage others to become as passionate as they are.

You know that saying, ‘You can’t pick your family’? Well, that doesn’t apply when you’re picking the right job with a great boss. If you can meet with the boss man or boss lady for an interview, it usually gives you a sense of how that company will be run. Millennials at work tend to analyze that when deciding on taking a job. We ask ourselves questions like, “Will I be scared to ask this boss questions when I’m not sure?" or “Will they be fair when it comes to workload and pay?" and “Will they be a good role model and help me reach my goals?" We are not the generation to settle for a job, so these are make-or-break questions for taking a position.

Engaging millennials at work is all based on being challenged, having the right team that is supportive and doing work we are truly passionate about. A great boss needs to take these factors into account but also work towards achieving these three things:

1. Be a Leader for Millennials at Work, Not Just a Boss

A leader is someone who will work alongside the team, a boss is someone who shouts orders and watches from the sidelines. Be a leader who isn’t afraid to get their hands dirty and will come down to the employee level on important projects. In a survey done by CNBC, 81% of millennials find being trustworthy the most important quality of a manager or boss. Once you can show that you are trustworthy and invested in the employees and the work they are doing, millennial engagement won’t be an issue.

2. Set an Example and Inspire Us

millennials at workInspiration is the moving train for millennial engagement. If the boss is not passionate about what they are doing, millennials can see right through that. We want you to inspire us to love what we do, be our mentor and give us guidance. 67 percent of the workers surveyed said they would be willing to take a pay cut to work at a company that offers good mentorship opportunities (CNBC). Self-growth is an important factor for millennials when choosing to stay with a job and when bosses offer those opportunities, it shows that they want us to grow and succeed in many different aspects.

3. Be Understanding and Caring

Millennials are a different breed of worker and being able to adapt to their goals, needs and behaviors is key. 80 percent of millennial workers find ‘respects work/life balance’ as an important quality of a manager (CNBC). If you are willing to take self-care, mental health days and work/life balance into account, millennial engagement will skyrocket. We see these occasions as necessary, to be a consistent and productive worker, which is valuable for any business. When bosses understand that we are human and not just machines, they will see long-term employment from millennials.

So, what does it take to be a great boss that millennials see themselves working for, for a long time? Being hands-on, encouraging others to follow their dreams and showing compassion for others. We millennials don’t ask for much, we just want a professional figure we can look up to and crush goals with! Break the mold of the typical boss and become a leader. Your millennial employee growth and millennial engagement depend on it.

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