It’s certain you’ve heard more than a few jokes about Millennials. Despite being constantly criticized for being too sensitive or too optimistic, the reality is Millennials are incredibly valuable for business, especially those that hope to thrive in the future.
The Brookings Institute reports that in the United States, Millenials are projected to make up as much as 75% of the workforce by 2025. They are a powerful demographic, one that is not to be underestimated.
“Millennials truly care about their work,” says Business Insider. “And they care about it beyond being a means to a paycheck.”
If your business isn’t actively hiring and tailoring content to Millennials, there’s no chance you’ll do well in the long-term.
The good news is, there are three tweaks you can make to your business and company culture make it more attractive to valuable Millennial workers. These changes also have the added benefit of making your company better all around.
1. Embrace a flexible workplace
Millennials need work-life balance to be happy in their workplaces. More than half (58 percent) would take a significant pay cut in exchange for a quality work environment and better work-life balance.
As a whole, Millennials often take the “work to live” approach rather than “live to work.” That isn’t to say they don’t care about their quality of work, but they have a strong desire to make sure their lives can be full outside of the office.
This is a simple fix. It’s easier than ever to run a remote office, or simply offer an option to work from home at least one day a week. This will save you the cost of running electricity in your office, and it will save your entire team time and money from their commute.
The influx of technology and mobile devices makes it convenient and simple to run a non-traditional office. This way, you can get the best talent for each specific job by outsourcing, and allow your team to focus fully on their work and productivity.
2. Build an ethical company culture
A crucial and overlooked part of engaging Millennials relies on your business model and work ethic. According to the Harvard Business Review, a company must “have a deeply compelling vision” of how its work contributes to society if they want to attract Millennial workers.
Eighty-six percent (86%), of millennials (those between the ages of 22 and 37) would consider taking a pay cut to work at a company whose mission and values align with their own, says CNBC.
Not only is this a practical idea to attract the best talent, but it’s also a smart one for your company culture. If everyone on the team is passionate about their work, morale and productivity go up.
An easy way to get started is by volunteering with your staff. Your team can discuss and choose a charity to support, and spend an afternoon helping out. Volunteering improves empathy and social awareness, and you can all get to know each other while helping your community. Your Millennial team members will appreciate it.
3. Keep it authentic
Remember what we said about authenticity? It’s incredibly important for your brand and your employees that you don’t fake any part of your business. Millennials hate being condescending approaches and they want real responsibility in their roles.
As the largest consumer demographic in the world, they have purchasing power. They also understand marketing; “social media savvy and concerned with ethical consumption, Millennials, and Generation Z have been marketed to their entire lives. As a result, they have a sharp eye for artificiality,” reports Answer 1.
Having Millennials on your team will help you avoid inauthenticity, and ensure you don’t alienate your younger audience. This will also ensure your social media presence is effective, rather than cringey or overzealous. Many brands try to tailor their content to a younger audience and end up repelling them instead. Work around this by employing a younger demographic in your marketing team.
Millennials want their work to matter, and they want to make real progress in their careers. You can help them do this by including your team in decision making and encouraging open discussion.
Educating your employees while they work is a great way to help them build confidence. Utilizing webinars, training on the latest tech, and finding business mentors for key team members will go a long way in building your company up.
Move forward with Millennials
Millennials have a lot to offer in the workforce and in your business. They’re hard workers with a savvy eye for marketing and a need to make an impact. Let them have some freedom with a remote office or work from home, focus on your company culture, and let them lead. You’ll see solid results.
Parker Davis is the CEO of Answer 1, a leader in the virtual receptionist and technology-enabled answering services industry. Since 2015, Parker has been responsible for Answer 1’s strategic vision, senior level management, and equity creation. He believes that the application of data analytics, investment in technology, and fostering a positive company culture together create highly efficient and scalable growth companies. He has an M.B.A from Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University and a B.A. in Economics from the University of Notre Dame. Connect with @answer1 on Twitter.