Who are Millennials & What are Their Characteristics in the Workplace?


Last Updated: September 1, 2022
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Who are Millennials?

Anyone born between 1981 and 1996 is classified as a “millennial.” They are known as millennials because they became adults around the turn of the millennium.

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Millions of millennials around the world will nod their heads enthusiastically over this statement. They’re the ‘smartphone’ generation armed with rapidly evolving technology and a distinctive mindset. Other generations may find their way of life baffling or even frustrating. They’re used to labels like ‘self-absorbed’, ‘narcissistic’ and ‘flaky’ being thrown their way by family, society and employers. Like them or hate them, but millennials are the change-makers of today. And they’re here, not just to stay but also to slay.

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Millennials are set on defying convention and testing boundaries, not just in society but also at the workplace. Take a closer look and you will notice that these changes are mostly universal. While previous generations only wished for changes in the way they worked, millennials actually make those changes happen. They choose how, where and why they work to lead a fulfilling, productive life.

Millennials are poised to take over from previous generations and become the leaders of tomorrow. You can support them, even challenge them; they’ll be happy to prove their worth. But don’t write them off just yet. If you need help finding a middle ground to work with them, we’ll be happy to show you the way.

Are you a millennial looking for your ideal career? Take Mentoria’s holistic psychometric career assessment test to discover your ideal career based on your unique interests, skills and personality!

Begin With A Mission

Millennials don’t think about money when it comes to working. They need a purpose and meaning behind the work they do, even if it pays less. Using their talents and strengths helps them measure their development and lead a fulfilling life. Need them in your workforce? Your brand needs to instil a sense of social responsibility and passion for their chosen cause in order to lure them.

In no way does this mean that millennials are anti-profit or resistant to growth. While they understand the importance of monetary value, the compensation needs to support a meaningful mission.

Trust them to Manage Their Time

Millennials do not subscribe to the nine-to-five way of life. They’d rather work on their own time out of homes, coffee shops and co-working spaces than a formal office setting. You may find this attitude ‘lazy’ and ‘entitled’, but research shows that allowing them this flexibility helps you increase their engagement and productivity.

Millennials thrive in a work environment where they feel trusted. Nitpick on their attendance and leaves, and they’re going to walk right out. Trust them to know what they’re doing and focus on their quality of work instead of the hours they spent working. This will help you form better working relationships with them.

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Want to show your millennial employees you care about their future? Get in touch with Mentoria’s expert career counsellors to help your employees get step-by-step guidance on their future career path. Investing in their future shows that you are invested in them. 

Utilise Their Tech-Addiction, Don’t Lament Over It

You might get annoyed when you see millennials glued to their smartphones for every second of every day. But you have to keep in mind that this generation grew up in a technologically advanced world. You might think their addiction comes from a lack of people skills, but one look at their online connections will tell you an entirely different tale.

Apart from finding technology more efficient, millennials know how to work better using technology. You should make use of this know-how to champion your organisation’s cause.

Still can’t make peace with it as a parent? You should know that your child isn’t whiling their time away; millennials ‘stay woke’ by using their smartphones to catch up with the news, learn new skills, establish connections and even build businesses!

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Offer Frequent Feedback

Millennials want real-time feedback, not just annual performance reviews. A lack of constant feedback could make them feel unappreciated, as they need your inputs to help them grow. Remember, this is also the generation that is used to instant gratification thanks to the internet and social media. Don’t think of this as a constant need for praise or attention; look at it as an opportunity for greater engagement.

While it will be impossible to change your mindset overnight, we’re hoping that this article helps you get a glimpse of the millennial way of life. Like every other generation, they, too, have tremendous scope for improvement. But you’ve got to admire how their burning desire for change, passion and purpose are striving to create not just a better workplace, but also a better world.

Give your employees the gift of guidance: partner with Mentoria for our career counselling workshops, which provide expert guidance to your employees and their families to guide them through their career decisions.