Digital

Attracting and Retaining Millennials

Part 3 of 3

Include videos on the Careers page that highlight different aspects of the company and corporate culture. “Day in the Life at XYZ Company” is a great way to attract candidates. Employee profiles and photos of how employees and the company give back to the community are also great talent-magnets.

Retaining Millennials is not as difficult as anticipated. There are five BIG factors to retention.
• Transparency of corporate culture.
• Communication – frequent and through many different means including email, text, and face-to-face.
• Constant feedback – frequent feedback on a monthly, weekly, or even daily basis.
• Clearly defined expectations – written outlines and milestones for projects. Define position requirements and expectations.
• Sense of purpose – have a means, either within the company or on personal time, to give back to the community.

Attracting and retaining Millennials is easy if you know where to go and what they are looking for in a company. It is without a doubt that this group of talent will help reshape work as we know it.

Communicating with Millennials Continued

Part 3 of 3

In the spirit of communicating via summary sheets and videos, keep in mind that Millennials are a generation who are happy to converse via text, so when writing emails, keep them brief. Utilize the subject line to give a snapshot of the email. Better yet, utilize text. Texting is not only an acceptable form of communication but may garner a quicker response than email.

While Millennials may seem to speak a different language of IDK (I don’t know) and TL;DR (Too long; didn’t read), learning their language and communication preferences can benefit the organization as a whole.

Communicating with Millennials Continued

Part 2 of 3

 

When explaining important information, such as benefits, specific policies and procedures, and the like, face-to-face communication is best. Eighty-six percent of Millennials say that benefits influence their decision to stay with an employer. However, they do not want to spend time reading to learn about their benefits. Instead of over-stuffed information packets, face-to-face benefits presentations along with short, graphic summary sheets work best. If a face-to-face presentation is not possible, utilizing a video presentation is just as effective.

Summary sheets and videos are effective not only for benefits information, but for all aspects of the on-boarding process and company wide updates and announcements. Building a robust company intranet complete with benefits information, summary sheets, contact lists, videos, and more will keep engaged and everyone else informed.

Next: Text Speak

Communicating with Millennials

Part 1 of 3

While technology has been embraced in most of areas of the corporate world, there are still areas that remain in the “dark ages” of large handbooks, guides, and pamphlets. This is especially true when it comes to employee benefits information or other on-boarding and training materials. And, communication methods remain low-tech at some companies. With more and more Millennials entering the workforce, these methods can lead to a complete communication breakdown.

Millennials are technology dependent. They have no concept of a world without the internet and are more comfortable reading from a computer screen and typing on a keyboard, rather than writing in a notebook. Today, more college students use electronic textbooks than traditional textbooks. When sharing new employee materials or updated information, it is best to do so electronically. Placing employee handbooks, benefits package information, summary sheets, and other important information on a company intranet is ideal for everyone, not just the youngest team members.

Next: Benefits Count

Millennial’s Want to Make a Difference

 

Part 2 of 3

This generation wants to make a difference and is not afraid to work hard to achieve their goals. They yearn to work for a company that they believe in.

Seventy-eight percent of millennials will choose their employer based on its ability to innovate. The current corporate structure in many companies lacks innovation. The attitude that a work day is 8 to 9 hours and performed in a cubicle until working your way up the ladder by putting in unpaid overtime doesn’t cut it.

What do Millennials want from their employer?
• Diversity in the workplace
• Flexibility
• Safety and security in their career
• Jobs that nurture their core values
• Constantly gain new experience

 

Next. Minimizing turnover.

 

Millennials Deconstructed

Part 1 of 3

Demographics in the workplace are rapidly changing. Baby Boomers are retiring. Generation X is moving out of middle management into upper level positions, leaving Millennials to fill their shoes. The youngest members of the workplace have a very different approach to work than any other generation before them.

Millennials have often been called a generation of entitlement. While this is not true, it is easy to understand how they gained this stereotype. Children born between the early 1980’s and the early 2000’s have grown up with technology, full schedules of extracurricular activities, and helicopter parents.

They have also witnessed violence in schools and workplaces and have, many times, seen their parents being laid-off after years of loyal service to an employer. Because of all these experiences, they have a basic belief that there is more to life than work and that work can be performed anytime, anywhere.

Next. What Millennials want.

Outsourcing Dividends

Read a piece suggesting 5 small business tasks that pay to outsource. All great suggestions like customer support, taxes, legal, online marketing and Web design and maintenance but, missing one biggie – acquiring talent. Full disclosure. I’m an executive recruiter helping firms find marketing stars.

Empty seats equal missed revenue. I know, I’ve harped on this subject in the past but, in today’s tight, highly-competitive “human capital” market filling those seats with satisfied, long-term revenue producers is critical. Which suggests outsourcing talent acquisition may have a multiplier effect on your business and its growth.

What are experienced, driven marketing executives looking for in today’s market?

Allow me to share comments from an outstanding sales director I spoke with earlier today. He’s looking for a firm with a differentiated product coupled with a strategy to keep ahead of the competition and established culture that unconditionally supports its employees. A place with around 100 dedicated souls who bring a positive attitude, enjoy collaboration and thrive on applauding everyone’s successes.

If that describes your company let’s talk. I’d love to help keep the momentum rushing forward.

Is Communication Killing Productivity?

 

Before the days of internet driven non-stop, instant communications my employer, WSJ, engaged with Xerox to improve listening skills believing if we became proficient in actually hearing what was being said productivity would increase. And, it did. For some more than others but that’s another story.

I read today around 1/3 of the workforce is so overwhelmed by their company’s communication’s tools they’re thinking of quitting their jobs. Management acknowledges significant loss in revenue to due to missed or poor internal communications – over three billion dollars in annual profits from wasted time alone!

The Dynamic Signal study found that most workers (51 percent) do not feel properly informed by their company, ultimately feeling disconnected (57 percent), unhappy (33 percent) and not valued (76 percent) for their work, resulting in workplace departures.
Being able to listen to others is imperative in the communication process. This means not only listening with your ears, but also being able to comprehend what the person is saying. And receiving confirming feedback.

I’m a recruiter so helping companies find talent is my job but none of us in this profession want to deal with a workforce incapable of managing communications. To management I’d suggest immediately setting basic communications guidelines holding department heads accountable. To HR leadership I suggest all exit interviews probe for this issue reporting progress to senior management. To those faced with a wide array of tools, time demands and that awful feeling of having missed something really important don’t quit but do demand management deliver a workable fix.

A workable fix could be as easy as (a) severely limiting using the annoying, “reply all” response, (a) taking a few minutes each morning before opening one’s computer to make a prioritize TO DO list and, the really tough one, ignoring the internal chatter.

Would love to hear your thoughts!

Transferable Skills

It has been our experience that the majority of the job descriptions we see for marketing roles contain very specific job experience requirements. To me, this flies in the face of conventional wisdom. Ask any CMO of a large, publicly held company, they will tell you that marketing skills are transferable across industries. Therefore, a skilled and experienced marketing person should be able to transition from CPG to financial services or financial services to pharmaceuticals or… There might be a steep learning curve but a motivated, intelligent person will succeed and the company benefits from having a fresh perspective on its marketing challenges. This industry-only practice seems to unnaturally eliminate some very good potential candidates.

So, why does this practice continue to exist? I can think of two reasons. First, companies don’t allocate the time required or have confidence in their on-boarding process. So they hire someone who will “hit the job running”. Or second, they’re afraid to make a mistake. If the candidate doesn’t work out for reasons that have nothing to do with experience or skill set, the hiring manager has a built-in excuse, “But he/she had all these great jobs and recommendations”.

At PCS, we like to look at a prospective position in terms of what skills are necessary to be successful at the job and how will the person fit into the culture – and that has to go both ways. We believe that’s the winning formula for a successful placement.

Be Curious

Read a piece earlier today about Amazon’s hiring process. You know Amazon – that, “Work hard. Have fun. Make history.” first company (beating Apple!) to reach a $1 trillion market cap. What struck me was the company’s attraction to candidates who are “scrappy in how they solve problems”. Good advice for any company hoping to survive the next market disruption.

Beyond being scrappy Amazon also recommends that the candidate stays open-minded and curious about opportunities at Amazon. For me that’s the “bingo” moment for any candidate hoping to stand out from the crowd of other candidates. Ask great questions. As my business partner says, “Great questions trump poor answers”. And, honest curiosity may open new doors that lead to an even better career move.