How to Catch a Millennial

By Catherine Lang-Cline

The search for talent is on and every business is looking at the Millennials. Also known as Generation Y, Millennials were born between the early 1980s and late 1990s. These young workers have fresh ideas and a high comfort level with the digital age. They’re needed to fill many entry-level roles. So why are they turning down your job offers?

Millennials approach their work life very differently than past generations. They don’t want a job to simply pay the bills. They want to align themselves with a company that feels like a match. It used to be enough to offer advancement opportunities and a greater job title, but Millennials are looking to build their own personal brand. That means they want to work at a cool place where they feel like they’re contributing, and they have the freedom to change the world if need be. Sound like too much? Don’t underestimate this group. Their parents taught them to be winners and they know nothing else.

Here are three things to consider if you’re looking to hire a Millennial:

1.     This generation is driven by purpose. Money is great and greatly appreciated but it’s not the be-all-end-all for Generation Y. Sure they want to be able to afford the latest gadget and have special life experiences, but they also want to make a difference. They want their contributions to matter, not only in the world but more importantly, in your business. It’s imperative that you make sure your younger workers know how their efforts help the company’s goals because if you don’t, you may be forced to spend time constantly replacing them.

2.     They don’t want to be tied down to a desk. Mobility is important to younger workers. While they might not want to sit at a desk from 9 to 5, they will constantly return emails, texts and phone calls wherever they are. For them, ideas are being sparked constantly. The desire to contribute is never-ending, so why harness that only during the typical workday when you can be flexible with face time instead?  A word of caution: make sure your terms about working overtime are legal and clear to everyone.

3.     They want to work someplace cool. Look around you; is your office space cool? Does it feed creativity? Does it invite open conversation? Forget the pool table, that is mere fun, we are talking about going deeper. Are your employees allowed to openly ideate and make contributions to how things can work better? Think more like big white boards, areas to gather and open space to encourage conversations. Do you do things like Pizza Day or maintain a well-stocked refrigerator? Do you have cutting edge technological tools so that your team can easily produce and communicate? Make sure your company functions well as an up-to-date workspace to attract and keep bright young minds.

Now go catch yourself a winner!