When the traditional adult thinks of a typical millennial, they might use some unflattering words. Admit it, you’ve thought it before. Using words like “lazy” or “high maintenance” to describe their way of thinking. Our way of life was founded on the idea that working hard and not asking questions are the keys to being “successful.” If you are one of the many that are close-minded to the thought of adjusting how your company does things, I have some news for you: Millennials aren’t going anywhere. The US Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts that millennials will make up approximately 75% of the workforce by 2030. It’s time to admit that the millennials are building our future and we need to adjust our strategies accordingly.
As the millennial generation has entered the workplace, some companies have found it difficult to merge work habits of the self-confident twenty-something with the strict and disciplined generation that came before them. Though many view millennials as being self-centered and not keen on the traditional way that things have been done, they have really just been evolving our ideas of productivity and efficiency into an entirely new version that utilizes the ever-changing technology of today’s world. Basically, millennials work better than you.
Here are some ways in which the millennial generation has changed productivity for the better:
- Being open to change. Millennials grew up in a world in which technology was constantly evolving, bringing with it newer, easier, and faster means to accomplishing the same task. Embracing this change allows businesses to keep up with a world that is constantly evolving, guaranteeing that they don’t stay stuck in the past. And since millennials have been taught that change is a good thing, they are always looking to create the next best thing themselves.
- Being extremely responsible. As stated earlier, many people view the millennial generation as being self-centered because they want to focus on themselves in the workplace. However, this isn’t a bad thing when it comes to being productive and efficient. Millennials want to accomplish the jobs that they were given, in a timely manner, so that they can advance their careers while still having a life outside of the work place.
- It’s okay to make mistakes. Many older workers might see failure as something to be avoided at all costs. Millennials are more likely to think that if something doesn’t work out the first time, they can just try new and different ways until they get it right. This contributes to more creative thinking and the ability to bounce back from a mistake or error. The self-confidence that many millennials have brings the understanding that they have the ability to get the job done, so if they can’t do it correctly the first time, it doesn’t mean that they should just throw in the towel.
- Multitasking isn’t a bad thing. Millennials are so used to focusing on two (or more) things at once when it comes to media consumption, and this can translate to productivity in the workplace. The millennial is able to understand content more quickly because they are used to constantly consuming content and utilizing all of the resources available to them.
- Relationships are everything. Between social media and the many technological advances in the way we communicate with one another, millennials understand the power of relationships. They have seen WOMM (word of mouth marketing) overcome obstacles like time and distance, by moving online. While many of us assume that their passion for technology has replaced authentic relationships, the truth is that they have embraced technology as a means to connect with others in a more efficient way.
Though all traditional values in the workplace shouldn’t be thrown out, change is an important part of life and the staple of progress. By embracing the evolving world we live in, the millennial strives to keep up with an environment that rarely stays the same. So, the next time you have a millennial trying to give you some advice on how to do something, try to put your differences aside. Their opinion may be a little more valuable than you think.
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