How to Prepare Millennials For Executive Leadership

May 9, 2018 – Millennials seem to have their very DNA attuned with the hyper connectivity that our world has adopted, John Nimesheim of Slayton Search Partners noted in a recent report. As this generation begins the slow but steady ascent up the corporate ladder, spreading their influence and sharing their purchasing power, how do we prepare them for the reality of executive leadership?

“It’s not simply a matter of training them for the leadership roles that have traditionally led our organizations,” said Mr. Nimesheim. “It’s understanding how to train them while simultaneously adapting that training to our ongoing understanding of the projected future business landscape. Essentially, it’s like trying to hit a moving target.”

The Makeup of Millennials

While there are more similarities between Millennials and older generations than many stereotypes suggest, there are some key differences that impact their work style and preferences. These distinctions are vital to understand when preparing Millennials for executive leadership.

“Millennials place far more emphasis on culture, community and transparency in their workplace than their elder counterparts,” said Mr. Nimesheim. This translates directly into a need for support, feedback and collaboration. This is a generation that needs to know they are appreciated and that their work matters.”

Preparing Millennials for Executive Leadership

Millennials believe soft skills like communication and relationship building are some of the most important aspects of leadership. “This is significant because with evolving business trends setting an unprecedented pace, business development will take a team of visionary, cross-functional leaders who can communicate and collaborate effectively,” Mr. Nimesheim said.

So how can organizations better prepare them for their future careers? “While each business will require a unique strategy to fit their needs, there are several elements that remain practical across the board,” said Mr. Nimesheim. “Effective mentorship is one of these. A mentor is a valuable source of applicable advice for and genuine interest in the person who is being mentored. Additionally, developmental opportunities such as standardized training programs, online courses, or tuition reimbursement can go far in challenging Millennials to prepare for future leadership.”

Contributed by Scott A. Scanlon, Editor-in-Chief, Hunt Scanlon Media

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