The ME ME ME Millennial Generation

Ann O'Mahony 28.03.2014

It seems we are surrounded daily by new discussions on Generation Y and what it takes to attract, retain, lead, manage and motivate them.

An event hosted by the Irish Institute of Training and Development yesterday was thought provoking, interactive and highly engaging.  

An opening slide with a snapshot of the cover of Time Magazine entitled The ME ME ME Generation by Joal Stein with the subtext 'Millennials are lazy, entitled narcissists who still live with their parents - Why they'll save us all' engendered some laughter "Millennials are lazy, entitled narcissists who still live with their parents - Why they'll save us all engendered some wry laughter set the tone of what would be discussed for the next hour.

Generational trait changes research indicates that levels of self confidence and narcissism have increased, levels of social approval have declined and locus of control is more external and, worryingly, levels of depression and anxiety higher and more common that ever. Some Generation Y values discussed were  24/7 connected, bored by routine, lifestyle centred, entrepreneurial, global, educated and civic minded.  

Over the last four years there has been a 52% increase in teens playing games online - not surprisingly what makes these games so engaging is what also engages adult Gen Y in the work force. They like to be involved, problem solve, work in collaboration, get feedback, stretched to think strategically, have fun and be self directive.

So what were the key strategies for retaining, motivating and leading Gen Y suggested at today's event?

Feed forward

Always give feedback with a focus on improving future performance. Don't dwell on the mistakes of the past - especially the immediate past!

Mentoring / coaching

'Managers as coach' is key to successful engagement. Boomers (1945 - 1961) are their preferred mentors - Schooling the Boomers on savy use of social media and digital technologies really floats their boats! Gen Y value experience and 'grey hair' story telling. Gen Y like to turn traditional mentoring on it on its head with 'reverse mentoring'. Schooling the Boomers on savvy use of social media and digital technologies really floats their boats!

Meaningful Work

Work in an environment in which creativity, freedom to choose their own work hours and where life and work mesh seamlessly.

 

Morgan McKinley is a professional recruitment business who are expert at matching job seekers to roles which complement their values and motivators. We invest time and energy to listen to our customers thereby connecting special talent to special companies. We can't always guarantee a hammock!

Ann O'Mahony's picture
Operations Director
annomahony@morganmckinley.ie