September 30, 2016 – Millennials have surpassed baby boomers in the United States as the largest living generation, according to population estimates released by the U.S. Census Bureau. Defined as those born roughly between 1983 and 2000, they are a generation worldwide that is changing everything — from work and spending patterns to the adoption of new technology, innovation, and regulation.
‘Walk With Me,’ is the latest in a long line of surveys looking closely at this demographic group. This latest report identifies five personality types that Millennials represent in the workplace. It is authored by Kriti Sharma, global director, mobile product management at Sage.
Based on key characteristics, attitudes and behaviors, these are the five types of Millennial personalities highlighted. It’s definitely worth a closer look:
The Principled Planners
The Principled Planners are extremely methodical in their approach to work and enjoy carefully planning for success, in a structured way. They have an ambitious streak, never take anything at face value, and always ask a lot of questions.
But Principled Planners are also keen to make an impact on society and are careful to prioritize their own set of personal values over making a profit. They want to enjoy what they do and be masters of their own destiny. Sound familiar? We’ve got several running around our office at the moment.
These Millennials value people more than technology but rely on paid-for technology to ensure they stay ahead of the competition and to target their customers. In 10 years, they see themselves saving money on office space and overheads, thanks to mobile working and employing more people from overseas.
The Driven Techies
The Driven Techies love their work; they can’t bear the thought of sitting around twiddling their thumbs. They trust in the power and efficiency of innovative technology to keep them one step ahead of the competition — and they have a strong belief in that technology’s ability to accurately target their existing and future customers.
Suspicious of appearances, they value technology more than people for the smooth running of their business, strongly believe in the quality of free technology, and believe that digital networking is crucial to their success.
Driven techies are motivated by a desire to share their ideas with the world but get demotivated by their dependence on funding and the crowded marketplace. More than any other persona, they work best on their own but like to know what everyone else is doing, so they can stay in control.
The Instinctive Explorers
The Instinctive Explorers are cavalier and love the unknown as well as exploring uncharted territory. They trust their gut instincts and stick to their guns. Their modern image is extremely important to them, as is leaving a legacy behind to be remembered by.
The Instinctive Explorers are less likely than most to embrace flexible working; however, they love technology and rely on it heavily for networking, although they say it’s not crucial for their success. They claim they are resourceful enough not to have to rely on technology to succeed, so they are not concerned about being able to afford the latest gadgets.
For the Instinctive Explorers, making money is far more important than honoring personal and social values. Above all, they want to be famous and for their business to really make a splash. People who belong to this group are likely to be serial entrepreneurs, their plan being to work long hours, get rich quick and retire early. When it comes to work/life balance, they are more likely to choose work over life and for that reason this Millennial group values regular socializing with colleagues. They tend to leave employees to their own devices, trusting them to deliver.
The Real Worlders
The Real Worlders are very resourceful but are likely to say they rely on technology — preferably free technology — in order to succeed. When it comes to their approach to work and making decisions, they tend to alternate between going on gut instinct and taking a more methodical approach.
Keen to grow their business, as long as they can continue working for themselves, Real Worlders are often serial entrepreneurs. They value people more than technology for the smooth running of their business and prefer to do business in the real world, as opposed to the virtual world.
They are most likely to choose life over work but pride themselves on doing a good job and believe strongly in people power.
Easily bored and always on the lookout for the next challenge, the Thrill Seekers enjoy diving into the unknown and couldn’t care less about appearances. Over half say they lost passion for their business up to a year after starting up.
Thrill Seekers choose highly social ways of working, work best around others, and enjoy bouncing around with people. They are as likely to leave employees to their own devices as they are to know what’s going on.
The Thrill Seekers believe that making a social impact is overrated, treat the success of their business as their own, and work for the happiness of their employees, who tend to share their ambition and drive.
They are not in the least bit concerned about the evolution of technology and are indifferent to the extent that it could help their business. In fact, they feel they would be able to run their business with the technology that was available 20 years ago.
Why Millennials Are In the Driver’s Seat
In this first episode ‘Talent Talks’ podcast, DHR International’s global investor relations and communications practice group leader, Smooch S. Reynolds, provides some great insight, smart tips and her personal perspective on ‘Working with Millennials.’ Listen Now.
As employers strive to reach, engage and hire Millennial talent, one career expert said that Millennials are “in the drivers seat” when it comes to the future of business.
“The way they interact digitally and revolve their lives around technology is completely reshaping how business is done,” said Smooch S. Reynolds, an executive recruiter with DHR International. “As a result, companies are scrambling to keep up and establish best practices to thrive in a world that’s gone digital.”
Ms. Reynolds said that one way this is being done is by simply employing Millennials, but some companies are finding this to be more difficult than they’d expected. “This generation is different from those preceding it. As a result of their digital lives, they’re given a transparent view into business,” she said. “In a way, Millennials are already dictating the direction of business through the use of constantly changing technology and digital platforms.”
Perhaps we’re starting to realize, said Ms. Reynolds, that Millennials don’t really think like us. So, how do we attract them to work for us and make them stick around? Not surprisingly, she said, the answer isn’t money. “In order to understand them, we must first understand how Millennials approach their lives,” she added.
According to Ms. Reynolds, Millennials value experience over being able to pay the bills; they’re unwilling to sacrifice their personal lives for their professional lives; and they’re social beings (but not social in the normal sense) that like to emphasize digital.
“What Millennials want isn’t some secret formula or obscure business practice — rather, they want similar success to ours. But they frame the operating philosophy of their lives a bit differently,” said Ms. Reynolds.
So, here’s what Ms. Reynolds suggests you need to do in order to attract Millennials and keep them around – after all, they are the future of the world and business:
– Be Approachable: If you’re friendly, open, social and approachable, your employees (of all generations) will want to work for you;
– Work/Life Balance: There’s been a noticeable shift in work / life balance towards the life side. Sometimes work requires extra hours outside the designated 9-5. Giving employees ample personal time makes that extra Saturday time commitment a pretty reasonable request. They don’t need to be in the office? Let them go early. It’ll pay off when you need something timely done over the weekend and they jump right on it;
– Social Beings: Millennials grew up with constant exposure to social life through digital channels. They crave social interaction that’s bigger than group/team projects. Make your workplace a social atmosphere. Having a friend at work makes all the difference in the world, let alone an entire office of buddies;
– Life Stage: While compensation and benefits are important to a Millennial, these aren’t the key drivers or motivators of that entire generation. They value a job with good experience, a strong mentor and room for growth over a dead end job that pays what they perceive to be a paltry annual salary. They take directions well from management and look to you as a coach / mentor, so play the part. Just be careful not to overstep your bounds.
“The problem is that many companies struggle with this demographic group,” said Ms. Reynolds. “Studies have shown that Millennials are good team players, ambitious, they seek constant appraisal, and they look for fast promotions. That means they are likely to develop into job-hoppers, which is frustrating to companies that hire them.” And low retention rates also mean more expense in replacing them once they exit the doors, she added.
“Companies must step up now to discover how to attract, recruit and retain this important human capital asset,” advised Ms. Reynolds. “They represent the future.”
Contributed by Scott A. Scanlon, Editor-in-Chief, Hunt Scanlon Media and Dale M. Zupsansky, Managing Editor, Hunt Scanlon Media