Cool is Relative

Managing Millenials

Managing Millenials

Finally after half a century of sigmoid curves & quantum leaps that has seen the world cycle & evolve through continuous improvement, flower power,  an end to the space race,  acceptance of gay rights, child rights, animal rights and the Johari Window.  Finally we have produced the ideal generation – They are educated and in touch with the planet, their parents, their peers and their feelings.  They are – The Millennials


Millennials have learned from an education system geared towards encouraging them to think and supported in the process by educators, internet (and other) resources and liberal parents who want them to “learn from their mistakes” and “make their own decisions”.  They have played games with no winners or losers and have grown up with the expectation that they will automatically win, and that their opinions count.

The Millennials have ideas and opinions, have a contribution to make and don’t want to be ignored, they want to be treated with RESPECT and they will reciprocate.

They actively seek leadership and structure from their older and managerial co-workers.  They acknowledge and respect positions and titles, however they want a relationship with their boss and thrive on mentoring as opposed to a more independent environment.

As a leader – listen to the millennial employee and respect their ideas, be a credible leader – they will hold you accountable


Millennials communicate freely with the world, sharing all their stories publically and across multiple social groups.  They are very connected to their parents, there is no shame to living at home and they turn to their parents for personal and career advice.   Millennials gather in groups and want to work with people from different backgrounds.  They are confident that more can be achieved in a team than alone and they want to be part of a team.

They are tech savvy and connected at every level to an “intelligent network” of “friends”, “connections”, “groups”, “circles” & “pin boards”.  These instant feedback loops have created a world of ACCEPTANCE based on what Millennials “Like” or “Link”.   Being “Cool” and social accepted is a big deal, feared by brands and exploited by the bullion dollar social media companies that have built these platforms.

Millennials want to endorse and be endorsed, they need constant feedback and in particular, praise.  They need to continually feel valuable and want to be presented with opportunities to share their feelings and ideas.  Companies that capitalise on the Millennials affinity for networking could unlock new creativity & enthusiasm.  Millennial employees like to and companies may well find themselves being endorsed as the New “Cool” place to work.




Millennials talk, walk, listen, watch and text with every gadget imaginable becoming an extension of their bodies. Multi-tasking is the norm with so much to do and so little time to do it in, the absence of distraction leads to boredom.    Millennials need to feel challenged and want to grow their careers not simply arrive for work, they want to make a difference and need an outlet for their creativity.

In their “private” lives Millennials want to be similarly distracted by multiple family, sport, social & philanthropic activities.  Millennials want to play hard and are not willing to give up their lifestyle for a career, they will work sixty hours a week only as long as there is some flexibility and their priorities are also met.

For Millennials there are always ALTERNATIVES and they have no fear of loss – If you don’t give me what I want someone else will & they will pay me more because I am worth more.

Millennials are ready to take on the world and companies must direct their enthusiasm and energy into projects that allow them to make a valuable contribution.  Millennials should be managed with an eye to retaining talented employees even if it means shuffling teams & responsibilities around.


Millennials are the future “King Makers” to stay in the game businesses need to embrace the change.