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Millennial Paradox


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This presentation quickly details some of the potential large-scale implications of Millennial mentality in the workforce today. Will a significant skills gap develop? How do we best groom the upcoming generation for positions of leadership?

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Millennial Paradox

  1. 1. The Millennial Paradox
  2. 2. The times are a-changing. Bob Dylan may have uttered this sentiment in regards to social revolution, but the same can be said of our rapidly transitioning workplace. As baby boomers exit the job market and millennials enter the workforce, companies are finding themselves facing questions of leadership, questions of training, and questions as seemingly fundamental as even how to approach aforementioned questions. In the face of uncertainty, one thing can be said as incontrovertible truth. Millennials are not their parents.
  3. 3. Placing emphasis on things like corporate social responsibility, an employer brand, and rapid leadership ascension while neglecting things like loyalty, training, and traditional corporate structure, millennials pose an interesting case study for the future. What is the best way to harness the potential of this emerging workforce? How do we capitalize on the best talent of the upcoming generation? How do we best groom this generation for leadership roles?
  4. 4. The truth is, of course, there is no “right” answer; but there is certainly a variety of answers nonetheless. Seb O’Connell, the executive vice president and managing director for Europe at Cielo, believes that an impactful gap of skills could develop in the relatively near future. In response to this potentially detrimental, although currently hypothetical, situation, O’Connell claims businesses should make an effort to identify Millennials with a high capacity for corporate success. On identification, then said business can begin to implement the proper training and metrics to put the respective millennial employee on the track to efficient leadership.
  5. 5. However, this theory of identification and subsequent devotion of training resources hits a snag in regards to loyalty. In fact, a 2016 Deloitte survey concluded that two of every three Millennials plan to leave their current position by 2020. So within four years, well over half of the current millennial workforce plan to be employed elsewhere. Naturally the question arises: “Why devote these resources in the first place?” But there is no universal answer. Each company’s situation is unique and so there is a different reply for every set of circumstances. Regardless, this question remains as pertinent as ever in selecting Millennials to hire.
  6. 6. Lisa Mullen of Halogen Software thinks the answer to attaining and retaining top millennial talent is to integrate “ongoing performance management” as part of the daily routine. In this way, employees regarded as prospective leaders would have access to senior management wisdom, thus effectively grooming them for more prominent positions in the future. That said, a measly 7% of companies “offer millennial coaching, mentoring, and dedicated time with their chief executive and other senior leaders.” So while certainly a great idea in theory, it does not seem many companies are implementing this approach. Maybe senior executives’ time can be better spent elsewhere not tutoring entry-level positions. Regardless, something should be done to ensure the skills gap mentioned previously does not come to fruition.
  7. 7. Millennials pose unique obstacles in the workforce today as well as tomorrow. They crave rapid promotional ascension, yet simultaneously aren’t receiving the leadership training required for such promotions. They look for a respectable corporate brand that resonates with their own perspective of the world, yet largely plan to leave their current employer within four years. Perhaps such contradictions are indicative of a pervasive naïveté that envelops the younger generation. But perhaps not. Perhaps it is indicative of something better, of not settling for less, of making the world a better place. Perhaps, capitalism is evolving.