Congratulations, you’re expanding, and you have an entry-level position available. Your goal is to hire someone that will grow with the organization. Everything you have read suggests if you find the right candidate, and if they are from millennial generation (Gen Y), they will take the learning and run to their next opportunity. So you contemplate, how do you attract, engage, and retain millennials?
Attract a millennial to your organization
After basic needs are met, such as adequate pay and adequate working conditions, millennials’ seek to make a meaningful difference. In reflection, we could probably agree that employees from most generations want the same. So, what makes hiring a millennial slightly different?
When millennials are making an employment decision, they put less weight on stability and higher pay than previous generations. They value above all else, making a meaningful difference and therefore, they are drawn to organizations who have a social purpose and are accountable to deliver on it.
Social purpose goes far beyond a corporate social responsibility initiative that provides donations, or occasional goodwill in the community. A social purpose organization weaves a social good initiative into the culture of the organization. Its existence is to equally address a social or environmental issue while operating a profitable organization.Want to attract a millennial to your organization? Consider what is or could be your social purpose? #YouMeWeMovement #MyContributionCounts Click To Tweet
So, you want to attract a millennial to your organization? Consider what is or could be your social purpose? No time? Well according to the 2016 Cone Communications study, 76 percent of millennials consider a company’s social and environmental commitments before deciding where to work. And 64 percent won’t take a job if a potential employer doesn’t have an active corporate social responsibility practice. Because millennials place more emphasis on contributing while they work, they will do something else that many people in previous generations would found cringed worthy… 75% of would take a pay cut to do work that gives them meaning. So perhaps some social purpose consideration would be time well spent.
How to engage a millennial in social contribution
So, if you want to attract a millennial, consider how is your organization doing social good. If you want to keep them, get millennials involved as they also like to get their hands dirty and contribute to the direction of the organization. The more they are engaged in developing the process, the more they will be engaged in its execution (again, not an exclusive millennial trait). Being involved in the design of a social initiative will also provide them with a voice at the management table earlier in their tenure at your organization. This appeals to the desire to sense their value in the overall direction of the organization.
Already have an established social program? The most effective way to get a millennial engaged is, wait for it… is tell them directly. They prefer to learn about doing social good from a senior leader or supervisor. For the rest of us, an email would do the trick.
How to retain a millennial?
Again as the Cone Communication research suggests, this educated cohort wants to grow professionally, seek opportunities for financial gain, and are highly motivated by new personal experiences, such exploring new places and meeting new people. Opportunities often offered through social purpose initiatives.
As a leader, directly communicating to a millennial their value–it will pay dividends. Authentic appreciation will go a long way in their work. Let them know their ideas are being considered, and if implemented, ensure you communicate their impact. If you don’t use it, let them know why – it’s a learning opportunity.
Your commitment to doing social good through volunteer programs, fundraising initiatives, community projects or realigning your organization to fill a social or environmental need, will go a long way in establishing your organization as a millennial haven.
The long and short, when working with millennials celebrate them, cultivate them, and co-create alongside them while providing an opportunity to do meaningful work.
Because millennials will soon make up 50% of the workforce, you may want to consider how your value proposition will attract this social conscious group. The best talent strategy is less about the talent, and more about what your organization is doing to attract it, engage it, nurture it, and keep it.
Upon reflection, I’m convinced – I must have been born after 1981.
Until next time, make your contributions count. #YouMeWeMovement #MyContributionCounts
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