Lately, it seems like everyone is writing about the fact that companies don’t cater to the needs of millennials and thus are losing them as rapidly as they can hire them. I read these articles and as a Baby Boomer/Generation Xer I just shake my head as I think about the fact that all workers have basic expectations for their workplace. Quite frankly, I think there are many factors that all generations would agree on and I want to challenge each of you to think about that as you manage your entire workforce.
If you want to be considered a desired workplace that not only attracts new talent, but keeps your employees engaged and happy, consider the following dos and don’ts that I believe are meaningful to all workers.
DO create a more flexible work environment.
Most employees are not excited to wear a suit and tie to work each day. Being able to come to work in casual attire (when business needs allow) will help them feel more comfortable. Allowing employees to have some flexibility such as working from a laptop and being able to move around as needed for a more laid-back workplace will actually create more productivity.
Don’t limit upward or lateral mobility.
Make sure your employees are aware of the possibility for promotions, or that they can change job titles and/or at a minimum take on new responsibilities. Cross train and work with them to integrate them into the organization and make sure they understand their value. If they see a future in the company, they are less likely to entertain thoughts of leaving.
Do challenge them with training and educational opportunities.
If your employees aren’t consistently challenged in their careers, they can grow bored, restless and unhappy with your company. At that point, you no longer have an engaged and productive worker. Create training opportunities and a budget for continuing education. If you allow your employees to improve their skills, they will be able to add even more value to your organization.
Don’t wait for annual reviews to give feedback.
Everyone wants to know when they are doing a good job or when they are not quite measuring up and appreciate constructive feedback to help them get back on track. Take the time to give your employees a pat on the back and thank them for a job well done. If there is something they can improve on then offer your mentorship. Boosting your employee’s confidence and showing genuine appreciation will keep your employees engaged and satisfied and not looking for other employment.
The Employer Group’s HR team is available to discuss and provide ideas on how to challenge and engage your workforce.