PART I: RECRUITING MILLENNIALS
1: Get Them To Apply To Your Company
2: Design A Collaborative Environment
3: Offer The Perks They Actually Want
4: Be Flexible With Work Arrangements
5: Embrace Social Responsibility
6: Create A Transparent Culture
7: Find The Right Fit
PART II: RETAINING MILLENNIALS
8: Give Them A Warm Welcome
9: Create An Effective Onboarding Plan
10: Be A Hands-On Supervisor
11: Live Your Company Values
12: Support Their Career Development
13: Use Technology To Your Advantage
14: Ask For Their Feedback
15: Open Up A Virtual Suggestion Box
16: Encourage Peer Recognition
illennials are the largest generation in the United
States, and more of them are entering the workforce
every day. They’re new, hungry, and impatient, and
they’ll turn your company upside down with their sense of
Or at least, that’s the hype.
While it’s true that millennials present unique challenges for the workplace,
we’re not scared of them—we’re excited. And you should be too. The
employees of this generation enrich the workforce with their new energy and
ideas, and we can help you leverage their potential to its fullest.
WHAT MAKES MILLENNIALS UNIQUE
Millennials, also know as
Gen Y, are connected like no
other. Born between 1980
2000, this gen
grew up in a digital age
with constant access
to information. This
their perspective, and
soon it’s going to shape the
workplace as a whole.
At 80 million
millennials will soon
be the majority of the
employee population in the
Their particular outlook isn‘t quite like the other generations they share the
workplace with. Let’s look at what makes millennials unique:
Born Between ...
The Vietnam War
The Cold War
War on Terror
The Great Recession
Civil Rights Movement
Occupy Wall Street
Apollo 11 Moon Landing
Fall of Berlin Wall
The millennial worldview is one of a global community that can (and should)
change the Earth. According to
Cone Millennial Cause Study:
61% of millennials
in the U.S.
age group has
believe it’s our
about the state
of the world and
to change the
treat all people with
race, gender, religion,
make a difference
political viewpoint, or
WHAT THIS MEANS FOR THE WORKPLACE
This carrying-the-weight-of-the-world perspective spills over to millennials’
careers. Their personal values aren’t separate from their work values. And their
personal lives aren’t separate from their work lives. Always connected, they
want to catch up on social media at work—but they’ll also answer work emails
off the clock.
The division between 9-to-5 and the rest of their lives doesn’t
exist for this generation.
The old rules don’t apply.
Unfortunately for employers, millennials also reject the traditional rules about
career development. They don’t want to wait years for a promotion. They
want growth in their careers, and they want it fast. According to
millennials are over 1.5 times more likely than other generations to focus on
shortterm opportunities. They care about the pace of their career path, and
they’ll go wherever they need to in order to further it.
notes, the resulting turnover is hard on companies:
that it takes 3-7
Over half say
15% or more of
weeks to hire a
that the cost
of training and
employees in the
millennial in a new
is highest for
Turnover isn’t going to slow down anytime soon. According to
43% of millennials plan to actively look for a new job in 2015.
But while millennials may seem like an impossible problem to many managers,
it isn’t actually hard to understand what drives them and how to engage them
in the workplace. You just need to know where to start.
HOW TO USE THIS GUIDE
This guide will take you through the steps for making your workplace one
where millennial employees want to be—and thrive.
Learn how to make your workplace attractive
to millennials. From the physical environment
to the culture, from bringing in applications
to onboarding your new employee, you’ll find
out how to turn your company into the place
where millennials want to work.
This is a guide on how to engage millennials
in the workplace. Learn how to supervise them
and help them develop their career path within
your organization. By helping them grow, you’ll
motivate them to find their next opportunity
This generation will push to get a lot out of their workplace—but they’ll push
themselves just as hard to do great work. Take the time to learn how to win
over millennials, and you’ll be rewarded with all they have to offer.
GET THEM TO APPLY TO
t’s not just employees that have changed with the times. Today’s recruitment
process is a far cry from the old job post cattle call. Set yourself up for
success by knowing where millennial candidates will look and what they
want to see.
Dropping a posting on LinkedIn or Monster just won’t cut it.
You need to prep everything about your recruiting experience to make yourself
attractive to applicants.
MAKE YOURSELF LOOK GOOD
What does your website say about your organization?
Does it provide a vibrant glimpse of life at your company, like Deloitte displays?
What about your “Careers” page? Does it give candidates an enticing (and
easy-to-navigate) view of their path with you, like Google offers?
Don’t let yourself be overlooked as a faceless organization. In a sea of job
listings, you need to show your personality. Just make sure to invest the time
and effort to make your website personable and functional—and especially
mobile-friendly—for this tech-savvy generation.
And like ThinkGeek, take the opportunity to make yourself look unique.
MAKE IT PERSONAL
For such a connected generation, a great way to boost your appeal is to add a
personal touch to your website. Many companies use videos to add a face to
their organization, including testimonials from employees to give candidates a
real-life example of someone who enjoys working there.
Twitter’s quirky approach
adds personality while also sharing useful information
about the job environment and benefits. The humor itself also sends a message
about the company culture.
Even if you don’t use video, make sure to show the faces of your organization
with photos, whether they’re having fun, hard at work, or engaging in work-
sponsored volunteering. It all comes together to help a job applicant know
how they’ll fit in.
BE A SOCIAL BUTTERFLY
Millennials are the social media generation. As
LinkedIn and the Altimeter
companies with a social media presence are 58% more
likely to attract top talent,
and their employees are 20% more likely to stay.
Make sure you’re using each tool in the best way to maximize its benefit.
Try Facebook ads.
People share so much information on
Facebook, from when they graduated to what their degree
is in. Use it to target them. Facebook’s robust ad platform
lets you target exactly who you want and remove anyone
Use the jobs tab.
Add a jobs tab to the top of your Company
page. This helps put your open jobs in front of the people
who love your company and its products the most.
Ask employees to share.
If your employees already have
Facebook profiles (very likely if you have millennials), ask
them to share posts with their networks. It’s a great way to
get word-of-mouth referrals.
Try LinkedIn Recruiter.
access to the entire network of professionals on LinkedIn.
Depending on your needs, LinkedIn offers a few plans to
personally connect with that perfect candidate. You can also
version for a less hefty investment.
Use LinkedIn ads.
Just like Facebook, people share all
about their professional lives on LinkedIn. Use this shared
information to target candidates with ads.
Take advantage of groups to find people
in the field you’re hiring for. Groups can get pretty niche,
which is great when you’re searching for a very particular
type of individual.
Leverage your network.
Call upon your network to help
spread the word about a great job opening you have.
. Be liberal with hashtags. If you’re posting
about a marketing job in Atlanta, consider “#Marketing
#Job in #ATL.”
Building up your company’s website and social media presence is an
investment, but they’re the tools you need in order to play in today’s recruiting
game. Millennials aren’t going to wait for you to catch up.
In Their Own Words:
A company’s website is like their receptionist, the face of their
company, and home to a plethora of information. If the site is
inviting, easy to use and up to date, I’m immediately intrigued.
As a millennial, I want to know information about them right then
and there. I don’t want to waste time trying to figure out who they
are. Any kind of outdated site or one that’s difficult to navigate
creates a feeling of mistrust—what do they have to hide? If your
“About You” says you’re tech-savvy, fun and professional, then your
website should reflect that. Your online presence should cater to
those you’re trying to attract. Are they fun, lighthearted, and don’t
take themselves too seriously? Or should I expect strict rules and
an “all work, no play” mentality?
Kris W., Copywriting
illennials are all about putting a
twist on tradition. Sure, they’ll
work with age-old methods, but
you won’t be able to unleash their creative
ideas if they’re not given the proper tools.
This crowd grew up with collaboration and
expects that in their workplace. It’s time to think
of redesigning your workplace to encourage brainstorming, collaboration, and
creative thinking. And yes, that means saying “rest in peace” to cubicles.
DOWN WITH THE WALLS
Millennials don’t want to retreat into a private space and become a human silo.
This group craves collaboration. And the first step to indulging them is tearing
down those cubes.
A study by Knoll
found these advantages of moving from
cubicles to an open floor plan:
There was a
an average of
Walls are an obstacle for communication, so don’t keep them up. Instead,
try grouping desks together or creating rows where employees can face
each other. Whatever your decision, make sure your workers can talk to their
colleagues without having to shout or move too far.
GIVE THEM THE SPACE
Getting rid of walls was step one. The second step is to create spaces for
collaboration. While meeting rooms are ideal, they’re not always readily
available. Here are some ideas for informal and formal meeting spaces:
Scatter tables around the office where employees can
quickly come together. Put up a whiteboard on the wall, and you’ve got
a faux meeting room. Having these tables promotes and encourages
Draw employees from their desks by giving them a
space where they can interact spontaneously. Idle chitchat around the
watercooler mainly revolves around work-related subjects, and you
never know when a brilliant idea might pop up.
Formal meeting rooms:
Don’t forget to still have rooms that can be
scheduled. Having enclosed rooms is great for sensitive topics or
when you need to gather a large party.
According to an
millenials reported that only 30.8% of
their ideation meetings are planned.
So make sure your workplace has
designated spaces where employees can quickly gather.
SPACE FOR PRIVACY
We’re not saying that you should completely nix privacy. Just as collaboration
spaces are critical, so are quiet ones where employees can completely focus
in on what they’re doing. Anyone who’s worked on a multi-thousand-row
spreadsheet can appreciate this.
And the walls don’t have to be fully enclosed—even putting up partitions can
help employees zone in on their task. This mixture of open and private spaces
gives people the flexibility to change their environment to complement what
they’re working on.
Millennials aren’t trying to disrupt the workplace with their expectations. On
the contrary, they’re enhancing it. If you’re struggling with ways to collaborate
with this unique generation, think about how they’ve grown up in a team
environment. Include that aspect into your workplace, and you’ll be surprised
with the fury of innovation just waiting to be unleashed.
From The Industry Experts:
n engaging workplace that fosters collaboration and connection
between peers is highly important to Generation Y. This generation
values relationships, thrives in team settings, and views the entire
workplace as their work space. They want a work environment that is
welcoming, transparent, equipped with the latest and greatest technology,
and does not limit them to a designated area defined by restrictions.
To design a workplace that appeals to Gen Y, think about the office as an
intertwined fabric of experiences. Create a variety of spaces that support
an array of work modes—focus, share, team—and social interaction. Offer
control and personalization through furnishings, personal accessories, and
other work tools that can be easily adjusted and customized by the user.
Provide an easy-to-use, ubiquitous technology platform for untethered
Kylie Roth, Director of Research & Strategy at Knoll
OFFER THE PERKS THEY
illennials aren’t driven by salary
alone. Organizations need
to realize that money alone
won’t sway this generation to accept a
job offer. In fact,
a survey by Cap Strat
72% of Gen Y are willing
to sacrifice a higher salaly for a more
personally and professionally fulfilling
EXTERNAL TRAINING OPPORTUNITIES
This is a generation that’s always looking to learn. In fact, the
Business School at UNC
tuition reimbursement was a powerful
attraction and retention tool
for millennials. So take this to heart and find
ways to help educate and strengthen millennials’ skills:
Classes for exams:
Certain industries, such as finance, require exams
in order to progress professionally. Covering these classes will help
employees advance, especially if they’re still in a junior-level position
and don’t have the funds for the courses.
Do you want your employee to succeed at their
role? Consider covering classes related to their field so they can gain
more knowledge to support their position at work.
General education classes:
Math, English, science—these might be
the classes your employee never got around to taking. These general
classes offer knowledge that your employee can infuse into their
career, whether it’s now or in the future.
Digital marketing strategies. Latest trends in nanotechnology.
Whatever industry you’re in, there are tons of seminars out there. Send
employees to learn about specific topics from industry leaders and
Live conferences offer the opportunity to hear from
experts, network with peers, and learn about competitors. So not only
are employees advancing their careers, but they’re also providing your
company with beneficial knowledge.
From business associations to marketing
societies, these groups are great learning and socializing opportunities.
Let employees take time out of their day to attend these meetups, or
even go with them. These events allow people to network and trade
Learning doesn’t stop after an employee gets a job. In order to advance in their
career, they need a way to gain knowledge. And external avenues are a great
opportunity for millennials to acquire the information they’re seeking.
INTERNAL TRAINING OPPORTUNITIES
External learning is just one option. Training courses and development plans
are also big influencers for millennials. The
how millennials felt about internal opportunities in the workplace:
65% said the
the most valued
development was the
benefit from any
most influential factor
for staying in their
Millennials value learning opportunities. They want to be in a company that will
nurture their development. So take advantage of just some of these internal
Entrepreneurs, company presidents, and industry
experts—they’re a wealth of knowledge. Invite them to your company
so employees can hear their stories and ask questions or get advice.
Have employees spend a few months at a time
in different sectors of the company. They’ll learn valuable skills that
they would not have gotten had they stayed in the same position for
Bring an instructor to the company. Not everyone
can make time to take after-work classes, so having in-house sessions
ensures all employees get the same training.
Brown bag learning lunches:
Leverage executives or leaders in your
organization to run a short seminar. This way, the more experienced
workers can share their wealth of knowledge with the less-experienced
Work isn’t all about producing, especially when it comes to millennials.
Give them the chance to soak up the knowledge by implementing training
opportunities during work hours.
JUST FOR THE FUN OF IT
“All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy.” Who doesn’t like to have fun?
88% of millennials are actively looking for a fun work
Think about ways you can help relieve the everyday stresses of
work for employees and help them connect with their peers.
Have lunch catered to the workplace and gather your
team to sit and eat together. No one can say no to free food, and it
provides a great opportunity for people to socialize and get to know
Having fun doesn’t always have to take place in the
workplace. Happy hours are a great chance for employees to unwind
after work. And the change of scenery can make it more comfortable
for people to start socializing.
Set aside some time or even a few days for employees to
work on their own projects. Let them get creative! You’ll be surprised at the
ideas they come up with. And hey, it’s a great way to inspire innovative
ideas for the company.
Millennials aren’t attracted to paychecks or ping-pong tables—they’re drawn
to simple perks that will develop them professionally and also let them have
fun at work. Include these perks in your company, and you’ll be able to easily
reel in top talent.
In Their Own Words:
couple of years ago, I made the tough decision to leave my job. It had
a good salary and great coworkers, but I just wasn’t growing in my
career. Since then, I’ve had jobs that weren’t glamorous or high-paying,
but I have no regrets. Now my work is interesting and challenging in a
way that’s fun. I feel like my work is actually a part of my life instead of
just being a place where I spend eight hours each day. It’s not that I don’t
care about salary or benefits. I just know that they’re not enough to make
a fulfilling career.
Dora W., Marketing
BE FLEXIBLE WITH
illennials are used to being given freedom and autonomy. In the
ever-changing world they’ve grown up in, adaptation and flexibility
are daily necessities.
Why should work be any
As studies by
millennials don’t see
flexible work arrangements
as fluffy perks—they’re a
they should be
able to make
hours at work
This is a generation that grew up during the Great Recession, and they know
firsthand that job security isn’t a given. In an uncertain world, freedom is the
currency this group understands and treasures.
Embracing flexible work arrangements isn’t just a perk for your employees—
it’s also a perk for your company. You can look forward to more work being
done, and faster.
Given free rein over where and when to get their work done, millennial workers
will take advantage of resources like mobile technology. And their work is
better for it, as
85% say their
37% do more work
outside of regular
hours due to mobile
faster than older
opposed to just one-
quarter of 50- to
But don’t count your other employees out. Workers of any generation can take
advantage of telecommuting and flexible schedules to be more productive,
work an average
of four more
hours per week
than their on-site
IN THE LONG RUN
Not only will this kind of workplace freedom give you more productive
employees, but you’ll enjoy them for longer. A
Cornell University study
that options like
telecommuting and flexible schedules help reduce turnover
rates—to the tune of one-third the rate of other, less flexible organizations.
Consider the benefits reaped by companies that let employees determine their
own hours and location—like
Best Buy did
—and you’ll be on board in no time:
Employees in better health (due to more sleep and exercise)
Reduced spread of illness because sick employees don’t feel pressured
to come in
Employees who have flexible schedules do more work, stick around longer,
and are healthier. It looks like millennials are really onto something here.
A FEW DOS AND DON’TS
When it comes to embracing flexible work arrangements, you’ll want to keep
tabs on this list of dos and don’ts:
Do equip employees with the tools they need to work
remotely, such as company-issued smartphones and
Do set clear expectations. Let employees know how
performance will be measured when they aren’t in the
same office as you or working the same hours.
Do communicate clearly about required attendance.
If there’s a mandatory meeting, make sure to let your
workers know well in advance so they’ll be available.
Don’t forget about team engagement just because
employees aren’t always in the same place at the same
time. Keep up community-building activities, mentorship
relationships, and other important interactions.
Don’t be one of the managers who only supports flexible
schedules on paper. The only way to gain the benefits
of these schedules—and interest from millennial
employees—is to practice true flexibility.
In Their Own Words:
aving the freedom to have a flexible work arrangement has made
such an amazing difference in my life. I never noticed how much
I was sacrificing when I was at my corporate job until the day I walked
away from that. Having the ability to work from home when an emergency
comes up or when I’m not feeling well alleviates so much pressure that
it allows me to enjoy my work without worrying about how my manager
will look at my absence. I love the “big freedom, big accountability”
mentality. Give millennials the freedom and flexibility, and they’ll thrive!
Amy C., PR
his globally minded generation considers all of us responsible for the
worldwide community. And as the
Cone Millennial Cause Study
UNC Kenan-Flagler School
point out, whether a company lives up to
social responsibility is a big factor in where these respondents choose to work.
to work for a
work over high
its impact on
So if you’ve been on the fence about committing time to volunteerism and
social endeavors, it’s time to hop on and get crackin’.
GIVE YOUR TIME
A company who wants to tap into this group’s idealistic energy would be
wise to introduce volunteerism as a regular part of its workplace culture. It’s
something millennials want to do, and this will make giving back a part of your
organization as a general norm.
Take these steps to introduce volunteerism into your workplace
Let everyone contribute ideas:
Ask your employees to suggest
organizations they’d like to support. It’s a great way to get them invested
Designate a point person:
Even with everyone taking part, you’ll need
one person who’s in charge of logistics. They’ll take the suggestions,
make some calls, and coordinate the event.
Give a heads up:
Make sure everyone will attend by getting the event
on people’s calendars at least a month in advance. Putting it on the
calendar makes it a priority.
To embed the work in your culture, institutionalize it by
ensuring that all members of your organization participate. It’s not for
some people. It’s for everyone.
Once a year isn’t a commitment. It’s lip service. Aim
for quarterly events.
GIVE YOUR PRODUCT
Do you have a product or service that can be easily shared with the community?
Consider giving it away for free to those who need it. Even more than donating
money, this form of charity brings your company identity to the donation.
Perhaps you’re a restaurant who can offer meals to homeless populations.
Maybe you sell books, bags, or office supplies, so you could give a child what
they need for school. If you don’t have a product but rather a service like training
classes, give some free sessions. And don’t limit yourself to individual recipients.
Which organizations could
benefit from your web
hosting services, travel
accommodations, or event
For instance, TINYpulse gives 1% of
its product away to nonprofits. We
believe every workplace should have
happy employees, so we want to help
deserving organizations that strive for a
positive work culture. After all, people doing
good in the world deserve to do it in an open, engaging
environment. And it’s not just one person deciding—all TINYpulse employees
get together to review the applications so the whole company can participate
in enacting our values.
If you commit to social responsibility, whether through volunteerism or
donating your product, then you won’t have to worry about figuring out how to
tell millennial employees that you care. They’ll be able to see it
in your company culture.
In Their Own Words:
can only speak for myself, but I think there is definitely a movement
towards more sustainable business practices. As millennials, I think
we have seen the ramifications of wealth disparity, overproduction,
and planned obsolescence. We can’t depend on others to fix things for
us. We have to take responsibility for our communities and our world.
Working for socially and environmentally responsible organizations isn’t
just attractive—it’s a necessity.
Madeline A., Account Management
hy do millennials want
transparency so badly
in the workplace?
According to our
, it’s the
number one factor impacting
employee happiness. Transparency
creates trust between employees and the
company. And millennials have come to expect it.
Unsure of where to start? Take these first steps to
create a transparent culture that appeals to millennials.
ROUND ‘EM UP FOR ALL-HANDS MEETINGS
It doesn’t matter how big your company is. All-hands meetings are the key to
transparency. Gathering employees into one room makes sharing information
easier than sending out a company-wide email. And really, who reads all those
Use these meetings to share:
Do you have a new round of funding? Or perhaps
you’ll have to be more frugal in the upcoming quarter. Communicating
the company’s financial position lets employees rally together and
know where and how to cut down.
Company and individual wins:
You just gained a big-profile client. An
employee hit 110% of their sales goal this month. Sharing achievements
is a way to recognize your employees for their hard work.
How many new clients should sign up for the
company’s product this quarter? Passing on this information gives
employees an idea of their workload and how everyone can come
together to reach this goal.
Challenges the company is facing:
Maybe you lost a few team
members. Let your employees know about these hurdles so they can
come together and contribute their efforts to overcoming any obstacle.
Current or upcoming changes:
Are you forming a new team? And
who will be on this team? Informing your employees about changes
helps them prepare for the shift and prevents people from going into
fire drill mode.
Making leadership visible is a powerful message to millennials. It shows that
management is eager to share information and isn’t communicating just on a
ALL-ACCESS PASS TO INFORMATION
Ever wonder why an employee received a promotion? Or how companies
decide raises? There’s no value in hoarding information. It doesn’t give you
power. Instead it makes gossip, mistrust, and speculation spread. Be up-front
with information and make it available.
From slide shows to documents, keep all of your information digitized in an
easy-to-access, centralized location. It allows employees to instantly find these
documents and prevent loose papers from going MIA. And don’t forget to tell
your employees about a new document or drop in a friendly reminder during
an allhands meeting so people are aware this information exists.
Laying out the information for employees clears the fog around how the
company operates and what its processes are. But of course, you can’t just
create these documents and walk away. You must reference them and keep
them top of mind.
Millennials, unlike older generations, think feedback plays a critical role
in success. A poll by
80% of millennials want regular
from managers. And 76% believe their boss could learn a lot from
them. So how do you embrace two-way feedback? Try the following:
Millennials want to know how they’re doing
and what they can do to improve.
Make them frequent and ask open-ended questions like “What
part of your job do you like least/most?”
Every employee has different views of the culture,
so let them dish out their innovative ideas for improvements.
There are no real benefits for companies to be exclusive with their information.
Being transparent with communication and making feedback a two-way street
will keep millennials engaged in the workplace. This generation is
breaking down the walls of communication, so your company
better be ready to open up.
In Their Own Words:
f milliennials feel like their company isn’t investing in them, they’ll always
have one foot out the door. They are adapting to the new freelance
culture, but it’s not necessarily what they want. Like any other generation,
we want to put down roots and work for a company that both respects its
workers and wants them to grow as professionals. Without transparency
and without honesty, this is impossible. A consistent and personal style
of communication is needed to make employees feel like they matter,
that their work is valid, and that their contribution, however small, is both
valued and rewarded. A lack of retention and a culture of dishonesty do
nothing but dissuade employees from giving 100 percent to their jobs.
Will S., Advertising
ou know what makes it easy to recruit great candidates? Already having
great employees to begin with. So boost your appeal by making sure
you only consider candidates that fit with your organization’s culture.
Don’t believe us? Consider these stats from the
and our own
employees to go
the extra mile.
a reason they
a reason they
stay with their
stay with their
People matter. And using your recruiting process to bring in the right
personalities for your workplace will make it that much easier to find and keep
the next batch of top talent.
WHAT MOTIVATES YOU TO EXCEL AND GO THE EXTRA MILE
AT OUR ORGANIZATION
Camaraderie, peer motivation
Intrinsic desire to do a good job
Feeling encouraged and recognized
Having a real impact
Meeting client/customer needs
Money and benefits
Positive supervisor/sr management
Believe in the company/product
(C) TINYpulse 2014 Employee Engagement & Organizational Culture Report
VET THEM FOR YOUR VALUES
Can you articulate the values, vision, and mission that define your company?
This knowledge will guide you in finding the right candidate to fit your culture.
Check out TINYpulse’s values, D-E-L-I-G-H-T:
lect to spread positivity
ead with solutions and embrace change
ncrease communication with open engagement
o the extra mile with passion
old oneself accountable
reasure culture and freedom
We share these values on our website as well as in job listings so applicants
will learn about them from the get-go. This shows them that sharing our values
is just as much of a requirement as any skills they might have.
One of our application requirements is giving examples of how they’ve
exemplified D-E-L-I-G-H-T in previous jobs. If they can show us that they bring
these values to life, then we know they can do the same as part of our company.
FIND OUT IF THEY FIT
Once you have the top candidates for your position, use the interview to
figure out if they’ll be a great addition to your company culture. In addition to
asking them about their skills and work accomplishments, probe them with
questions that will reveal their potential fit. You can ask them directly about
specific values, but you can also assess cultural compatibility with more open
questions like these:
“Tell me about your favorite manager.”
If you’re recruiting
for a supervisor position, this question will
tell you what traits they value and
therefore want to emulate. But
even if they won’t be a manager,
your candidate will tell you what
they think is important in a leader,
which indicates how they think a
team should operate.
“Tell me about your least
tells you what traits the candidate
doesn’t like to have in the workplace. If
the characteristics that make their list match the ones
you never want to see, then you know you’ve found a personality
“Tell me about your ideal work environment.”
Are you an established
business that values a set process? Or are you a young start-up that needs
to pivot at will? Understanding your candidate’s ideal work environment will
show you whether or not they’ll adapt and flourish at your organization.
“Describe your ideal work day.”
Millennials are more likely to be looking
for flexibility and a variety of day-to-day responsibilities. But pay attention
to what this individual candidate wants—occasionally working remotely, or
all telecommuting, all the time?—so you can see if what they’re looking for
matches what you want to foster in your environment.
“If I called up your last boss, how would they describe you?”
are remarkably honest when this question is asked. They’ll tell you all the good
things about themselves, but they’ll likely also mention the one negative thing
written on their last performance review. That one thing might be insignificant,
or it might be a deal breaker.
Also consider changing the format of the interview from what’s traditional.
Maybe you and your potential recruit can go out for coffee. The public, casual
setting can bring out more of the candidate’s personality, and you’ll be able to
observe them in a different environment than a sterile interviewing room.
The more you can learn about your applicant, the better you’ll be positioned to
make the hiring choice that will serve you both well in the long term.
From The Industry Experts:
ost managers hire for skill set and hope for mindset. Only 9% of
all new hires fail because they cannot do the job. That means that
91% fail either because they won’t do the job the way it needs to be
done or they don’t fit into the culture/play well with the rest of the team.
So focus your selection process on these two factors. Start by making a
list of the key attributes you are looking for. You will find that most of the
items on your list fall into the area of attitude not skills. Example, reliable,
dependable, honest, positive attitude, and most importantly responsibility.
If I would hire one thing I would look for people who are responsible. They
take responsibility for getting to work, handling problems, doing a great
job. The list just keeps getting longer and longer. Just one question you
should be asking to determine if they take responsibility is, what were
your responsibilities when you started your present or last job? What are
your responsibilities now or when you left?
Hire people who take responsibility.
Mel Kleiman, CSP, Founder of Humetrics Inc.
GIVE THEM A
any millennials are new to the workforce. They need guidance
through a well-planned onboarding program that focuses on training
and socializing, as our own research and findings from
received a C
when it came to
that they would
like a better
their first job
process for new
Do you want your newest hires sticking around for the long haul? If so, make
sure their first days are great.
I WISH MY WORKPLACE HAD A BETTER, MORE EFFECTIVE
ONBOARDING PROCESS FOR NEW HIRES
Neither agree or disagree
Source: TINYpulse.com © 2015
WELCOME THEM WITH WARMTH
So how do we appeal to this bunch? Skip the paperwork. Have new hires finish
that before their first day—it’ll open up extra time for more hands-on learning.
Consider these nontraditional methods for introducing your culture to new
Pop some champagne:
At TINYpulse, we celebrate new hires by
giving them a handwritten welcome card signed by everyone in the
office. And to show them how excited we are to have them, we also
give them a bottle of champagne.
Send new hires on a scavenger hunt. Through a
series of tasks and company-related questions, they can learn about
the organization’s history and culture.
Have new hires spend four to six weeks cross-training
with other teams to eliminate cross-departmental animosity.
Jump into the front line:
Task out an assignment from the get-go so
new hires feel like they’ve made a direct impact on their first day.
All hands on deck:
Get new hires handling customer service and even
assembling products to reinforce the idea that customers come first.
Onboarding introduces new hires to the important aspects of the company:
values, culture, and people. So ditch the formality and opt for one of the unique
options above. Because really, millennials are looking for a fun and creative
LET THEM SOCIALIZE
We know that peers play a huge role in motivating employees. So don’t forget
to make socialization a big part of your onboarding experience. Try out these
tips to give millennials a real chance to meet their colleagues:
Pair new hires with senior employees, peers, or their
whole team. Take the meet-and-greets out of the office to keep it fun,
social, and low-key.
Go out for happy hour or take a break to play some
games. Round up employees together for some mingling, and don’t
forget to introduce the new hire to everyone.
Do you have monthly social events or perhaps quarterly
volunteering? Pair your new hires with more senior employees to get
the event-planning committee going.
Being the new person at work can be isolating. So don’t just leave your newest
hires to fend for themselves. Make an effort to introduce them to the work
community. It’ll get them settled in more quickly, and you’ll be
able to ramp them up faster.
From The Industry Experts:
hen you bring in new players to your organization, they bring with
them—from past jobs—their understanding and knowledge of
what work means and how to behave. They don’t know exactly how your
company operates. You have to teach them.
Ensure your onboarding experience gives new hires a thorough
understanding of your values and culture. Tell them by sharing your
formalized values and desired behaviors. Show them how expected
citizenship is lived and monitored. Show them how performance is
monitored and why quality results matter.
Immerse them, right from the start, in what work means for your company,
what behaviors are valued, and how they can contribute quickly.
S. Chris Edmonds, Founder & CEO of The Purposeful Culture Group
CREATE AN EFFECTIVE
ur internal research
of all millennials want
a better onboarding
might be tempting
to dump all those
hire, this stat shows that such a thoughtless approach will leave your
newest hires unsatisfied.
Instead, create a 30, 60, 90-day plan for each employee. By taking into
account the time needed to ramp up and learn new skills, you’ll leave
your hires with a transparent plan about what they’ll learn, when they’ll
learn it, and what they are expected to accomplish.
Here’s a way to think about structuring the first three months:
EXAMPLE FOR A JUNIOR
* Know the tools
Introduce the content
* Know the company’s
culture and products
Meet the team and learn
about the company’s
* Accomplish small
products and services
Learn the social media
* Set goals
platforms and begin
Learn and adopt the
company’s brand voice
* Accomplish big projects
Begin conference- and
* Be aware of longer-term
Learn social media metrics
* Be comfortable working
tools and begin tracking
with other teams
* Handle routine
Collaborate with PR
team to pitch conference
* Accomplish projects
Create a monthly webinar
calendar and coordinate
entire webinar plan
* Take on bigger
Take over case study
* Be comfortable juggling
This is the time when a new employee starts the
ramping-up process. So prep them for success by
laying down the groundwork and helping them settle
into the company’s culture and their position.
During these first days, introduce them to the software
they’ll be using, start them off with small projects,
and set goals for them to achieve. Most importantly,
get them acclimated to the company culture.
By the end of the first 30 days, new hires should have
a good idea of their responsibilities, what to expect in
their role, and what’s expected of them.
The next 30 days should involve more collaboration
and handing over bigger responsibilities. So ease off
on the training and focus more on the doing.
They’re experts with smaller projects, so raise the
bar and introduce bigger projects and longer-term
responsibilities. And now that they’re comfortable
with the culture, have them collaborate with other
The last 30 days is all about removing the training
wheels. As your employee is taking on more
responsibilities and accomplishing bigger tasks,
they’re going to start becoming more accountable
for their work.
This is when you start taking the training wheels off.
Your new hire is now able to accomplish projects
with limited guidance from you, and they are now
equipped with bigger responsibilities.
Starting a new job is intimidating. But having a clear
30, 60, 90-day plan will let your newest hires know
where to focus their time and attention and what
they need to accomplish to be successful.
From The Industry Experts:
reating a strategic plan shows your new hires how serious you are
about building a great team, and they respect that. It also makes
them more comfortable knowing that they’re slowly being eased into
the process instead of having a load of information dumped upon them.
You’re setting expectations by telling them what their goals are and how
they’ll get there in the first days so they don’t feel lost. 95% of the time
it’s a process problem, and having a plan for new hires is going to set you
up for success. Otherwise, you risk losing a lot of money (up to $50,000)
on each bad hire. And not having a strategic plan can be a big cause for a
hire becoming “bad.”
Eric Siu, CEO of Single Grain
BE A HANDS-ON
illennials may be known for
questioning the rules, but that
doesn’t mean they refuse to
take direction. In fact,
61% of millennials say they need specific direction from
to do their best work. So don’t plan on being some faceless higher-
up that lives behind closed doors. It’s time for you to get involved.
KEEP THE CHANNELS OF COMMUNICATION OPEN
notes, millennials value openness, transparency, and inclusion in
a leader. No wonder a
65% of millennials think that “rigid
hierarchies and outdated management styles” squander their potential.
What’s a manager to do? How about being clear and candid at all times:
Give them feedback on their performance and specify
areas they need to work on.
Ask for their input:
Are their responsibilities clear? Are their tasks
manageable? Do they have the resources they need to be successful?
Explain their value:
Give them insight into how their work fits in with
the overall goals of the team and company.
Give them a heads up:
Notify them of upcoming changes as soon
as it is appropriate rather than waiting for official company-wide
Schedule regular meetings on a frequent basis, like weekly
one-on-ones. And don’t wait till then to let them know how they’re
80% of millennials want feedback in real time.
Tell them ASAP.
BOOST MANAGEMENT WITH MENTORSHIP
study found that
three-fourths of millennials want a
As Josh Bersin told us:
“Millennials and people of all ages thrive on exposure to leaders and top
executives. One of the most valuable ways to engage young leaders is to have
your own leaders teach classes, regularly meet with young people, and become
wellknown among the millennial team.”
Mentorship is great for your organization too. When
at the effectiveness of their mentorship program, they found out just how
had a retention
Mentors had a
20% higher than
How did that retention translate to the bottom line? Sun saved an estimated
$6.7 million in turnover and replacement costs.
So maybe it’s time you really turned your focus on mentorship. And be aware
of what millennial mentees want out of the relationship, which may not be
what you’re used to.
Engage them on a personal basis when you talk. Take
advantage of the relaxed atmosphere of a coffee shop, or use chat and
texting to have casual conversations where mentees feel comfortable
bringing you their questions.
Have frequent check-ins so you can discuss short-term
projects as well as long-term goals. Millennials will expect their mentors
to stay updated on their progress.
Make it a team effort:
Millennials are used to collaborating in all areas
of work, so consider setting up a network of mentors. The mentees
will be able to learn from different perspectives, and they can take
their questions to each mentor based on their individual expertise.
Make it reciprocal:
reports that two-thirds of millennials say
they should mentor older employees on technology. It’s a logical
move for a group that isn’t interested in typical top-down authority.
Open yourself up to the things they can teach you with their unique
Mentoring a great way to give Gen Y what they’re asking for—
and in a way that’s a win for your company, too. Use these
techniques to ensure a successful relationship.
From The Industry Experts:
he challenge is how to engage millennials’ strengths and
passion, while also being realistic that like all of us starting out, they
need coaching, mentoring, and experience to advance their knowledge
and skills. Seek employees who show both Intelligence (IQ) and emotional
intelligence (EQ), a passion for your firm, high integrity, and necessary
technical capabilities. It’s easier to train for hard skills than for attitude so
look for people who possess a positive attitude. When your top criteria for
employment is tilted toward personality traits versus technical abilities,
you’ll be more likely to have employees who become high performers
and future leaders. Once you’ve hired “top talent,” supervisors need
to regularly provide input, support, resources, and feedback. The most
effective supervisors prioritize helping each team member excel at their
job. Employees usually reciprocate because they feel cared for. They
become the engaged, motivated, and productive employees who make
Beth Kuhel, Founder & President of Get Hired, LLC
LIVE YOUR COMPANY
should shape your company’s
culture and direction. A
pointed out that when an
organization’s words and actions
are disconnected, millennials will
quickly have a negative reaction.
So it’s not enough to have a values
statement. You actually have to live
those values out.
CAN YOU RECITE YOUR ORGANIZATION’S VISION,
MISSION, AND VALUES?
Source: TINYpulse.com Engagement Survey. © 2013
CONSISTENCY IS KING
A study by
found that that nearly
80% of millennials look at
people and culture when assessing a company
—it’s the number one factor.
That’s right. Instead of bigger and better salaries, this generation is on the
lookout for a company that uses their values in every aspect, from hiring to
training. So be deliberate in how you bring your culture to life.
Bring values into your hiring process. Use the organization’s
values to evaluate whether the candidate will fit within the culture. The
right fit will help not only the person succeed but the company as well.
If an employee’s behaviors or actions aren’t aligned with the
company’s values, then it’s time to let them go. One bad apple can
affect the organizational culture, camaraderie, and productivity. But let
the employee know which value they were breaking so they’re aware
there’s a logical reason for termination.
Regardless of their position, put every employee
through the same training process. It ensures everyone’s on the same
page for the organization’s culture and values.
Organizational change isn’t always easily
accepted by employees. Use your values to guide important business
decisions—even if it’s hard. And be sure to tell your employees about
it so they see those values coming to life.
Companies that use their values as a basis for making decisions are sending a
clear message to employees that these guidelines aren’t just words—they’re
living by them.
And don’t forget to reward employees that live by these values. If someone’s
actions or daily behavior really represents one of your values, acknowledge
them. Recognizing employees this way highlights the behaviors you want to
be the norm.
Public appreciation is a great way to get your employees thinking about and
celebrating your values. It positively reinforces your culture and lets people
know what they should be doing to fit in.
PUT ‘EM UP
a paltry 42% of employees know their
Employees aren’t going to remember your values if
they’re nowhere to be seen. Make them prominent on your website. Post
them in your building, especially in places employees will gather together, like
conference rooms. Of course, you don’t want to stop here—people will get
used to the posters and stop noticing them—but it’s a start that will support
the company’s actions.
Companies can have a set of values, but they’re merely words when the
employees or management doesn’t bring them to life. In order
to keep millennials engaged, companies need to maintain
an aligned culture in every aspect of the organization.
From The Industry Experts:
rganizational values matter now more than ever. Today’s best and
brightest young workers are in high demand but also in short supply,
and having choices, they insist on joining forces with organizations that
align with their values.
It doesn’t matter how impressive your company values appear when
displayed in the lobby of your headquarters. The only thing that matters
is how your organization actually functions, how it goes about its daily
business, and most importantly, what guiding principles serve as the
foundation for the important decisions made throughout your company.
Your culture is always on display. With the Internet, social media, 24/7
news channels, and the plethora of smartphones with built-in hi-def video
cameras, the world has a ringside seat to how you treat your people. To
become an employer of choice, you must strive for perfect alignment
between how your company is described to potential customers and
investors and the attitudes, beliefs, and behaviors of your employees.
Eric Chester, Keynote Speaker & Business Author
SUPPORT THEIR CAREER
our millennial employees’ development extends well beyond the first
90 days. For these young workers, their career path is a priority. The
Kenan-Flagler Business School
and our own research found that it plays
a major role in the companies millennials choose to work for—and stay with:
Over half say that
their job if
they don’t see
options for their
So it’s time to be up-front about their career path.
WOULD YOU CONSIDER LEAVING YOUR JOB IF YOU
FELT THERE WERE NO OPPORTUNITIES TO GROW
Source: TINYpulse.com © 2015
A FAST-PACED MERITOCRACY
Millennials expect swift career progression—along the lines of every 12
to 24 months,
according to a recent Deloitte study
But job movements aren’t
just about tenure. They also have a lot to do with merit. The Deloitte study also
points out that millennials value certain criteria:
Did they meet their goals? Then they are well on their way
to a promotion. If they did not meet their goals, were there extenuating
circumstances to account for this (e.g. the goals were too ambitious,
or employees were asked to allocate their time in an unexpected way)?
Then this should be factored into their assessment too.
Are they developing new skills and taking on
leadership positions on new projects? This should be factored into their
assessment in addition to just getting tasks done.
A flexible path:
A flexible path: Millennials placed little importance
on “defined succession and career plans,” meaning they’re interested
in exploring their opportunities. Don’t confine them to a rigid career
ladder—let their development be shaped by their interests and aptitude.
This generation isn’t interested in the traditional style of paying your dues for
years before you get a promotion. But they genuinely care about fair treatment.
Be transparent about the criteria for promotions and use them when deciding
the next best time to bump them up.
ASK WHERE THEY WANT TO GO
Don’t assume that what millennial employees are looking for is a vertical
promotion or more money. Take a look at this disconnect uncovered by
30% of millennials
work” and “sense of
was the most
what they’re looking
for in their next role
If a supervisor thinks that their millennial employee is aiming for a higher title
and bigger paycheck, they’ll miss the mark. Don’t waste your time and your
employees’ time by pushing them on a path they have no interest in. Gain your
employees’ input on their personal development and then work together to
figure out the steps needed to make it happen.
SPOTLIGHT ON LEADERSHIP
Nearly a quarter of millennials are “as
for a chance” to provide their skills a
leaders, according to the
opportunities to develop that skill,
that their companies aren’t doing
enough in this area.
So how are you going to make this happen? Listen to what millennials want.
In a survey by
a millennial leadership training firm, millennials ranked
the following three options as their preferred way for gaining leadership skills:
Career coaching or mentorship
Rotation or special assignment
And don’t forget, you benefit too. While millennials are building up their skills,
you’re getting a better engaged, more flexible workforce. Not a bad way to
build up the strength of your team, is it?
In Their Own Words:
he main reason why I left my previous job was because there weren’t
any developmental opportunities left for me at that company. After
I was promoted once, management didn’t seem very interested in my
career growth. They appeared to be more focused on production rather
than providing opportunities for training or development. And I remember
when I put in my two weeks’ notice with my supervisor, she said, “I knew
we had to give you something new, but now it’s too late.” But luckily,
now I’m in a company that is transparent about an employee’s career
path and offers opportunities to take on new challenges.
Sabrina S., Marketing
USE TECHNOLOGY TO YOUR
natives. Everyone knows
this by now. In fact, it’s
so embedded in their DNA that the
US Chamber of Commerce
they are 2.5 times more likely
to be early adopters of technology
than their older counterparts.
So what does that mean for
companies? To keep millennials
engaged in the workplace, you’ll
technology. And our internal research has shown that 35% of millennials
agree their employer doesn’t leverage technology
in the workplace very
well. Here’s how to integrate advanced tools in ways that will appeal to this
MY EMPLOYER DOESN’T LEVERAGE TECHNOLOGY IN
THE WORKPLACE VERY WELL
Neither agree or disagree
Source: TINYpulse.com © 2015
TOOLS TO ENCOURAGE COLLABORATION
Millennials thrive through teamwork, and companies should take advantage of
their desire to work together. Leverage technology platforms that facilitate the
This social media-savvy generation is used to
collaborating online. Tools like
which includes news feeds,
private messaging, group creation, and file sharing, among other
features, create a nontraditional social setting that millennials will love
for dishing out ideas.
The Internet is a millennial’s go-to storage
house. With features from customized message boards to file sharing,
online platforms such as
allow people to manage projects
in a centralized location.
Hold the phone—millennials grew up
with texting and online chats. Use tools like
hashtag-based channels, group or private messaging, and file sharing
to streamline communication in the workplace.
Instant is the keyword here. If you’re looking for ways to enhance or encourage
collaboration in the workplace, switch over to technology right away.
CREATING A VIRTUAL WORKING WORLD
Technology has built a world where information lives in clouds, and people
don’t have to be in the same room to communicate face-to-face. And with the
growth of remote workers and flexible schedules, technology makes this all
work seamlessly. So leverage tools that make cross-office communication a
Physical file folders are as outdated as floppy
disks. Cloud-based platforms like
store files in one centralized, online location. Employees can
instantly access files from anywhere in the world, and their colleagues
can edit them at any time.
Also known as a virtual private network, this tool allows employees
to access the company’s private network through a public channel like
the Internet. No matter where a person is, they can have access to the
same private files.
There’s a good chance that millennials don’t remember how
expensive videoconferencing equipment was. But thanks to programs
, just about anyone can connect
through video calls. You get a free tool and you get to cut down on
travel costs. What’s not to love?
Imagine the time it takes for employees to travel
several floors to meet their coworker. What about trying to hunt down
where other employees are in the office? Instant messaging allows
employees to communicate quickly, whether they’re 10 feet or 10,000
miles away from each other.
In today’s digital world, communication isn’t just about face-to-face interactions,
emails, and phone calls. Millennials have grown up with technology in their
hands. And if your company isn’t willing to embrace it, you’ll be sure millennials
won’t be embracing your company either.
In Their Own Words:
echnology is crucial to my role. It’s a part of my lifestyle. So whenever
I go to places where I don’t have Internet access, I can’t perform my
job, because sending emails is a huge part of my responsibilities—just like
I feel disconnected from the world if I don’t have my mobile phone with
me. Millennials are so used to being able to connect digitally and instantly
with their peers, so they expect the same in the workplace as well. It’s
very uncommon to find a fast-growing company full of millennials not
taking advantage of modern technology anymore. Internal communication
channels, like Slack, make my work so much easier and efficient. Even
though I sit an arm’s length away from my coworkers, I find it more helpful
to ask questions via our online forum. That way, I can refer back to our
conversations, and I’m not disrupting their work if I ask them aloud.
Morgan N., Account Management
ASK FOR THEIR
e know that millennials value a
workplace that practices
and invites collaboration. They
don’t want to just be told what
the process is; they want to have
input in creating it. So don’t think
of employee feedback tools as
an optional perk—they’re just as
essential as your onboarding plan
and one-on-one meetings.
KISS THE ANNUAL FEEDBACK CYCLE GOODBYE
The yearly 50-question survey is an outdated dinosaur. Just as millennials
want to get frequent feedback from their supervisors, they want to give you
their opinion way more often than once a year. You wouldn’t look at KPIs just
annually. So why wouldn’t you keep track of your most important assets—your
employees—on a regular basis?
Leverage millennials’ eagerness to contribute by giving them a survey platform
that captures their feedback on a regular basis. Regular one-to two-question
surveys sent out weekly or biweekly are the way to go. These employees are
ready to listen to you and improve their performance in real time, so they want
the same thing out of the company.
THE FOOLPROOF WAY TO SURVEY YOUR TEAM
When done right, an employee survey is just what you need to find out what
engages your workers, what frustrates them, and what you can do to make
your organization better. The key is to stick with a few successful ingredients:
Make it digital.
Remember how tech-happy millennials are? Leverage
digital survey tools like TINYpulse that get sent directly to your employees’
inboxes and can be accessed in any place, at any time. What’s easier
Commit to anonymity.
Remove the fear of retaliation. If employees
have no doubt that they’ll be protected from identification and criticism
for their feedback, they will give you candid responses.
Keep it short and simple.
Don’t take up too much of your employees’
time. Stick to just one or two questions on a specific topic and you’ll
enjoy thorough, thoughtful responses. You might also see sustained
response rates as high as 90%, like some TINYpulse clients.
Aim for a weekly or biweekly format to establish a
regular channel of communication. If your survey is short and easy to
use, you don’t have to worry about the frequency being a burden on
FINISH WITH FOLLOW-UP
Sending out the survey is just the first 50% of employee feedback. The other
vital half is to demonstrate a commitment to following up on the responses
Share the responses.
Yes, even if they’re bad. Especially if they’re bad.
An important part of being a transparent organization is to let negative
feedback out in the open so your employees know that you won’t hide
from criticism. Of course, you’ll also be sharing positive responses too,
so don’t worry about damaging team morale.
Act on them.
You can’t just capture feedback—you have to do
something with it too! Get ready to create action plans to act on all
the great feedback you’re about to receive. And because you’re using
short surveys, it’ll be easy to distill feedback and come up with a plan.
Write it down.
Taking action isn’t the final step. Close the loop by
documenting the steps you’ve taken. That way, nothing gets overlooked
or forgotten. Showing employees what you’ve done with their feedback
will demonstrate that you value their input.
A robust feedback system will help you engage your millennial
employees and boost their investment in your company.
From The Industry Experts:
he key challenge with millennials is that they have turned upside down
the traditional hierarchy of employees’ needs and priorities.
While silents, baby boomers and Gen X employees were all primarily
focused on salary, benefits, sense of belonging, recognition, and ultimately,
the opportunity to influence the future, in this specific order of priority,
millennials’ priorities operate exactly in the opposite way.
Thus, the challenge for managers is to understand and establish what we
could call a “reverse assessment” process.
The “reverse assessment” process aims to fulfill millennials’ need to create
the future. A robust feedback system will help you engage your millennial
employees and boost their investment in your company.
Jordi Alemany, Managing Principal at Key Strategic Chain Solutions LLC
OPEN UP A VIRTUAL
hat’s a virtual suggestion box? It’s a much-
needed update that brings a tired practice
to the twenty-first century. Rather than having
employees write their ideas on a piece of paper and drop
it into a stuffy old box, take advantage of your online survey
and give your employees a digital platform to give tips and ideas.
WHY A SUGGESTION BOX?
While your weekly survey question may drill down on a specific topic, it’s
important to offer an open-ended space for your employees’ ideas on solutions.
Millennials want them.
When we surveyed millennial workers, 54%
told us they wish they had an effective way to give suggestions for
how to improve their workplace.
Employees use them.
2013 Employee Engagement Survey
found that 18% of survey responses included useful, actionable
suggestions... because they were given a tool to share their ideas.
Anonymity promotes honesty.
The suggestion box puts the focus on
the feedback instead of who gave it, so employees can speak freely
about their suggestions.”
Making the suggestion box virtual aligns with millennial norms. This generation
of digital natives is fluent in new technology, so why wouldn’t you make your
suggestion box digital too?
PERCENTAGE OF RESPONSES WITH SUGGESTIONS
Responses with suggestions
Responses with no suggestions
Source: TINYpulse.com Engagement Survey. © 2013
WHAT’S IN IT FOR YOUR COMPANY?
Imagine crowdsourcing ideas to improve your organization. That’s what virtual
suggestion boxes do. Millennials are given a chance to have an impact on
their workplace, and you get a bunch of great new ideas and a more invested
Consider just some of the great improvements made by TINYpulse clients
thanks to employee virtual suggestions:
Boosting team morale by increasing after-work social activities
Improving team safety by moving a morning meeting to the afternoon,
eliminating the need to call in while driving
Increasing employee happiness and health by adding more fruit and
nutritious snacks in rec rooms
These low-hanging fruit are a great way to solve problems and generate good
will in your organization with relatively little investment. And they’re the type of
improvements that would typically be forgotten by the time an annual survey
From The Industry Experts:
en Y was born with a mouse in its hand. Consequently, they are
tech-savvy and expect information to be “downloaded” immediately,
including their ideas and suggestions.
They were the first generation to have family meetings and safety laws
enforced with bike helmets, car seats, and seat belt laws. The message from
this was “You are special. We value you.” Consequently, this generation
values connections and wants to be part of a community at home, work,
and play. They will work with their friends at the same company if they feel
it’ll allow them more time with their community. Having a voice in their
community is important to Gen Y. They have the confidence to articulate
their vision and the tech skills to create their vision. Now they need you to
support them in listening to their vision.
-Anne Loehr, Founder at Anne Loehr & Associates
stamped as narcissists.
They want to be noticed
and recognized for their work. Sure, that
might sound needy, but in reality, lack of
recognition is the culprit for employees feeling
undervalued. Take a look at the findings from
2014 Employee Engagement Report:
Nearly 3 out of
A mere 21%
don’t feel fully
valued in their
Employees are feeling ignored. And instead of adding more responsibilities
to your plate, consider turning over recognition to employees
HOW VALUED DO YOU FEEL AT WORK?
1 is not at all valued, 10 is extremely valued.
(C) TINYpulse 2014 Employee Engagement & Organizational Culture Report
Employees feeling undervalued can wreak havoc on motivation, productivity,
engagement, and retention. But look at the wonders recognition can do for
your bottom line:
found that 69% of employees said they’d work
harder if they felt their efforts were better appreciated. Workers don’t
want to be treated like cogs—they want to their efforts to be noticed.
Companies with an effective recognition program
benefited from 31% lower voluntary turnover versus those without
such programs, according to
Bersin & Associates.
It’s no surprise:
employees that feel undervalued are more likely to be disengaged
and more likely to quit the second a better option comes around.
Engagement and productivity:
Bersin & Associates
also found that
14% of companies using recognition tools saw improvements in both
engagement and productivity versus companies not using recognition
tools. Again, employees that are disengaged aren’t going to feel
motivated to do work.
Recognition is more than just a fluffy idea. It has a positive impact on the
bottom line, which directly affects a business’s success.
THE POWER OF FREQUENCY
According to TINYpulse’s internal data, nearly
30% of all employees haven’t
received recognition in the past two weeks from their boss
. But the longer
an employee goes without recognition, the less valued they feel. Companies
can use scheduled recognition (like shout-outs at weekly meetings) but they
shouldn’t rely solely on that.
Consider the positive cycle that recognition causes:
Happy employees are motivated to give recognition. And the more frequently
these employees can give a shout-out to their colleague, the more valued
everyone will feel.
Workplace happiness is a product of camaraderie, not just manager-to-employee
relationships. So giving people access to easy-to-use tools for sharing every
bit of gratitude (big or small) results in a positive work environment.
WHAT TO LOOK FOR IN RECOGNITION TOOLS
Our research found that
54% of millennials wish they had a way to recognize
for a job well done. And our
2014 Engagement Study
employees use peer-to-peer recognition tools
when they are made available.
% OF EMPLOYEES GIVING ONGOING PEER RECOGNITION
(C) TINYpulse 2014 Employee Engagement & Organizational Culture Report
Isn’t it time you had one in your workplace? Here’s what to keep in mind for
any recognition tool:
Beyond the manager:
Managers can’t be around all the time to see
the good stuff happening, so use a tool that everyone can easily access
to give recognition.
Millennials love technology. Whether it’s a desktop
platform or mobile app, make sure they can access it digitally at any
Great deeds happen all the time. Make sure whatever
tool you use is always accessible so recognition can be given on the
Share the recognition with everyone. It creates a positive
environment and reinforces good behavior.
Look for these features to ensure that even the smallest success doesn’t go
unnoticed, and recognition can be given out spontaneously.
Unlike any previous generation, millennials are used to constant recognition.
When programs such as a peer-to-peer system are in place, you’ll
find that everyone (not just millennials) is more motivated
and engaged in the workplace.
In Their Own Words:
n all of my previous jobs, I felt that the managers didn’t understand just
how hard I worked on a daily basis. It was discouraging to be overlooked
and not recognized regularly. In my mind, if they don’t say anything, they
don’t care (or don’t think I’m doing a good job). However, I don’t fully
blame the managers. They weren’t working directly with me all the time,
nor should they have been. When they don’t see me putting aside my own
work to help a coworker, or staying two hours after a shift, they simply
don’t know I’m doing those things. Peer recognition is a powerful tool.
It’s typically my peers that witness my day-to-day behaviors, not the CEO.
When I was in managerial positions, I loved when my employees would
share with me the great things their coworkers were doing. I was simply
unaware. As a millennial, I do expect constant feedback, communication,
and recognition, and I am at my best when I receive them.
-Matt T., PR
illennials have gotten
a bad rap because
they’re more vocal
about their expectations. But
let’s face it—they have it
Think of it this way: this young
workforce is shining a light on what
isn’t working in the workplace. And their
expectations resonate across all generations. Transparent culture, recognition,
development—who doesn’t want these? By listening to what millennials
are looking for, you’re actually creating a better environment for Gen X and
HOW TO RECRUIT MILLENNIALS
Hook them in by creating an attractive workplace. It’s not just the physical setup
but also the culture you’ve built that will affect the application and onboarding
We’ve given you a lot to work on. Some things you’ll be able to tackle
immediately and on your own. Others require time and a company-wide effort.
As with any action plan, start working on the things you can handle today,
and put a process in place for those longer-term efforts that involve the entire
* Hire for fit by
Create a collaborative
space with an open floor
organizational values in
Offer internal training by
* Create a transparent
bringing in guest speakers
Devise an efficient
onboarding program that
* Offer a flexible working
includes on-the-job training
* Make your culture,
mission, and vision
responsibility by offering
clear on your website to
Maintain a presence on
social media through
* Offer access to external
specific hashtags or inviting
training like technical
employees to post on the
courses, seminars and
HOW TO RETAIN MILLENNIALS
Listen to what the millennials have to say. From supervision to career
development, they want guidance and support. And they also want the tools to
be successful in their careers and promote a positive workplace environment.
Just like the steps to recruiting millennials, it does take time and effort to get
a great retention process in place. Take apart the ideas below to implement
some changes today, and start a plan to implement others in the near future.
* Assign mentors to
Offer access to anonymous
help guide and show
and simple feedback
millennials the rope
Give access to an easy-to-
* Provide feedback on a
use peer recognition tool
regular basis through
frequent 1:1 meetings
* Create a 30, 60, 90-day
plan to prepare them
for their role
* Be clear about a
career path and
* Leverage technology
Align culture by
encouraging everyone to
live by the organization’s
projects, and streamline
Provide a place to give
CHANGING FOR THE BETTER
Millennials have a lot they can teach organizations. Managers can be put off
by them because they’re such an enigma. They have different needs and
expectations for the workplace compared to their older counterparts.
But once you pick apart their workplace wish list, find out what drives their
motivation, and dig into their lifestyle, it’s apparent that they’re creating a
seismic shift in the workplace. And it’s all for the better—for all generations.
Companies make an effort to consistently
Founded in 2012, TINYpulse works hard
to make employees happier around the
track revenue, financial returns, and
world. Our goal is to give leaders a pulse
productivity. But they’re forgetting one
on how happy, frustrated, or burnt out
of the most important aspects of their
their employees are, helping managers
organization: their people. And that’s
build bridges by sparking dialogue that
where TINYpulse comes in.
results in organizational change.
WHAT WE DO
We believe that information empowers leaders to create an engaging work
environment and culture where people can thrive. Here is how we do that:
Our weekly pulse survey measures employee engagement
using just one question. TINYpulse is a lightweight solution that captures
anonymous feedback from your team to reveal insights, trends, and
opportunities so you can improve retention, culture, and results.
TINYpulse’s Cheers for Peers™ peer-to-peer
recognition tool captures the appreciation, extra effort, and little things that are
often overlooked by leaders. Peers can easily send a quick shout-out to their
colleagues to brighten up their day—because a little recognition goes a long
Our virtual suggestion box lets employees have direct
input on how to improve the workplace. The anonymous format makes
employees feel comfortable being honest and offering actionable ideas to
improve their workplace.
WHO USES US?
Every organization wants happy employees. Our customers range across all industries
and all parts of the world, from start-ups to enterprises. Organizations such as GSK,
Living Social, Airbnb, HubSpot, Brooks Shoes & Apparel, and many more are using
TINYpulse to delight their employees and increase engagement.
START YOUR FREE 2-WEEK TINYPULSE TRIAL TODAY
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