Whether you love, loathe, admire or envy them, millennials are a huge part of your business infrastructure. They answer the phones, brainstorm revolutionary new ideas and pitch to high ranking executives. Heck, in some cases they’re the company CEO and have a net worth of $82 billion. So the most important change you can do is create a happier millennial team.
Rather than believe the false hype that every millennial is lazy, self-entitled and narcissistic, it’s better to engage with them and realize that they want the team to succeed as much as the rest of the office.
If you want the best out of your millennial workforce, implement these 4 tactics and reap the rewards of a proactive and productive office tribe.
1) Off-peak and On Flex
The notorious 9-5 grind is quickly becoming a thing of the past. In her toe tapping number one track, Dolly Parton said it best when she complained “It’s all taking and no giving”. Well now you can give.
The Internet allows us to work remotely from anywhere, at anytime on any device. So why not allow your team to enjoy this kind of freedom.
Giving millennials flexibility in their schedule doesn’t mean work won’t get done. It shows them that you trust them enough to hand in deliverables and meet deadlines without them being sat their desk. Read more about the benefits of a ‘Online Office’ approach here.
We’re seeing a huge rise in half day Fridays and stay at home weekdays in corporate culture. If this doesn’t work for you, then you can always send out a mass email when there’s serious weather warnings or notable traffic incidents, inviting your team to work from home. These small gestures certainly go a long way.
One study in the UK found that 70% of millennials want flexible working options. So when it comes to attracting the finest talent and retaining the elite team you already have, agile working hours is definitely worth considering.
2) Space Invaders
Flexibility hours also means flexible spaces. Open concept workplaces were heralded as THE way to work. But that’s not true. Millennials actually want a variety of spaces to work in.
That means big rooms for debriefing, small cubicles for private phone calls and quirkier areas to kick back and brainstorm. It’s down to you to optimize your workplace and turn it into a workspace haven.
Set-up different zones across the office to encourage employees to get out of their seat and away from their desk. Standing breakfast bar styled tables and recreational rooms with beanbags also give people the option to move around and interact.
It’s important that when working long hours that employees can shift environments and get into new mindsets. Not to mention hitting those Fitbit 10,000 steps total.
Don’t forget to be open to the idea of colleagues taking a coffee break to brainstorm at a local Starbucks. Think of caffeine houses as office silos not just frap houses.
3) Are You Experienced?
As I mentioned in 1) and 2), the workplace is no longer a fixed address. A millennial’s desk spills out into the public domain and fuses with coffee shops, park benches and mobile hot desks.
But all that work time needs to include play time. And the best way to reward your team is through experiences.
We live in an experience economy. The material world is second best, and it is those memorable team bonding experiences that motivate and inspire Millennials. So why aren’t they more widely instilled in workplace culture?
Whether that’s ordering an artisan ice cream surprise and delight cart or a larger-scale team retreat dog sledding in the North, reward your team and make them feel that they are part of something bigger than a 4-walled office. Here at Tribe, we are experts at curating the best experiences to strengthen your workplace relationships and pride ourselves on making millennial teams happier.
Remember, the annual Christmas party shouldn’t be the only time you socialize as a team.
4) 24/7 Supplies
Due to the way millennials are hard wired, if they feel they need to commit another few hours to finish a presentation then they will do. They just need fuel.
A well oiled, premium coffee machine is essential to any workplace environment. And that’s why the Tribe kitchen has a state of the art Nespresso machine, to keep momentum high and creative juices flowing.
Don’t ever underestimate the power of free food. Adding a range of sweet treats and healthy snacks is a small but powerful way to boost productivity in the workplace. But don’t just stock up on chips, dips and candy sticks. Make sure to add some bananas, apples and tangerines into the mix to align with their healthy conscious eating habits.
Next time you bring a millennial onto the team, I guarantee one of their first questions when they start will be “So, where’s the cereal bar?”.
Thoughtful Actions = Happier Millennial Team
These are just 4 tips on how to put a smile on your millennial teams’ faces. If you want other ways to maximize employee potential, speak to one of our tribe Eventors today and we’ll help install stronger culture in your workplace.