Previously I discussed what Millennials are looking for in leadership. And, please, don’t start off by arguing that you are not going to pamper them. This is not about pampering, it’s about developing a more effective leadership style – one that gets results.
To review, Millennials, like earlier generations:
- Want to be engaged through challenging, stimulating work that enables them to learn new skills that will lead to advancement.
- Like the idea of working as a team and given opportunities for training, coaching and mentoring from seasoned professionals.
- Want to be challenged and pushed to the edge of the envelope and learn through their experiences and mistakes.
- Prefer regular feedback in order to understand how to improve and be recognized when they succeed.
But they want it on a condensed timeline. So, what must we focus on when leading these Millennials? What do we, as leaders, need to know?
First off, know yourself – be aware of your style of leadership and understand how your style resonates with the 75 percent of the Millennial population and other populations that don’t have your style.
Does this mean changing your style? No, but if you understand the differences, you’ll stand a better chance of influencing those you are responsible for.
Understand how to set goals while including their input. Make the goals s
ealistic and t
rackable. We call these SMART
goals. It takes practice. You’ll find setting SMART goals removes ambiguity.
Learn to coach your reports. I don’t mean the annual performance review. I mean regularly scheduled sessions — once per week or every other week as a minimum.
You’ll be surprised at your comfort level the more regular you are. I don’t know of a single exec that is not intimidated until they actually put their toe in the water. Get some training and get started.
Get in the habit of providing dosed feedback. Don’t overdo it – learn how to give the right amount at the best time.
For yourself, set priorities, so you put the most emphasis on your high-payoff activities, like coaching. Put your time where you will be the most effective. Quit wasting time chasing a squirrel every time you get an email notice. Stick to the important stuff.
And, yes, Millennials need to understand accountability. But first you
need to understand how accountability is part of the underlying foundation of any organization.
Have I given you an overwhelming to-do list to prepare how to lead this new generation and, for that matter, all generations? No. At Academy Leadership, we have prepared thousands of modern leaders to be the effective leader who gets results. It takes commitment, an action plan and discipline, but it can be done.
A millennial problem? Think again. It’s our challenge and we’re accountable. Now let’s take responsibility and get ready to lead another great generation.
Ron works with emerging leaders, execs, entrepreneurs and managers who want to sharpen their leadership skills and inspire their teams to achieve a level of performance beyond their imagination. He does this by providing high-impact, energizing programs that give the participants an opportunity to learn and practice the guiding principles of leadership that are crucial to establishing a success-oriented environment. You already know a lot about leadership, Ron helps you to amp it up and put it all together so that you use your abilities in a disciplined fashion every day to achieve results?! His course participants are unanimous in their feedback, "I wish I had attended earlier in my career." He has also brought his Leadership Excellence Course to the Battleship North Carolina, where participants learn in a most inspiring environment how to motivate people, the power of integrity, the reasons for good feedback and many other defining leadership principles that help leaders and teams get to the next level and achieve results. You can check out some other course opportunities at AcademyLeadership.com. Look in the Raleigh, Greensboro, Charlotte and Wilmington areas.