ThrivingTalents has a great deal of experience in helping motivate millennial employees, especially in sales. They have volunteered to share their insights with our community; we thank them for the willingness to give back and share their insights on how to motivate millennial employees.

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While a multigenerational workforce has fantastic benefits, it can also create challenges in finding common working styles and approaches.

As millennials continue joining the workforce, organizations cannot desert the older generation; all must move forward together. Younger workers and older workers, working together, creating a more prosperous and more productive work environment.

Here are the four challenges we see most often in intergenerational offices.

Working Culture

What comes to mind for younger generations when they hear ‘working culture’ today are foosball tables and flexible working rules in the office. It’s great to have those at the office to stimulate happiness for your employees, but these perks do not necessarily define working culture.

Employers must set the tone at the workplace because how they receive the corporate culture will affect the entire business, not just one or two employees. Being strict in the office may be fine, but not celebrating your employees’ may cause damage to employee morale.

Consider hosting company events and happy hours and celebrating joyful occasions — these are excellent ways for everyone to grow together.

Interaction & Engagement

We have all heard about the differences in communication styles between older and younger workers:

  • Gen Y’s are text and instant messaging as well as tweeting.
  • The GenXers prefer emails and phone calls.
  • Adding into the mix, Gen Z’s, you get informal language usage, emojis, and colloquialisms leading to a communication failures.

“Understanding what people value and what motivates them makes it much easier to communicate job expectations, offer the right type of support or even make adjustments that will better suit a team’s performance.” said Amy Casciotti, vice president of human resources at TechSmith Corporation.

To further enhance your team’s communications, face-to-face team-building exercises can break down barriers that impact virtual and physical interactions.

Bad Stereotyping

Baby boomers are set in their ways and can be stubborn, making it hard for millennials and Gen Z’s not to criticize them. Right?

Be careful not to generalize based upon these generational stereotypes; they are hard to overcome, can destroy company culture, and reduce productivity.

Be on the lookout for obstacles that create misunderstanding, incorrect judgments, and so forth. When managing a multigenerational workforce, encouraging collaboration across people in different age groups can lead to healthier outcomes.

Working Traditions

Our expectations of the workplace will likely vary between this multi generational workforce. Leaders, and the businesses they work for, will benefit when they accept and allow their employees to work according to their styles and acknowledge their productivity.

Every age group must offer openness and flexibility for the multigenerational workforce to progress.

Michael Teoh and Nathaniel Thomas
Michael Teoh and Nathaniel Thomas

MICHAEL TEOH helps managers in companies across 41 countries strategize and motivate their sales teams to persuade and sell better to the growing Millennials generation of consumers. His work has been featured on CNN and BBC, and he is the Co-Author of the Potential Matrix (www.potentialmatrix.com). He speaks on ‘Everything Millennials’ to Fortune 500 companies globally, stemming from his diversified professional experience in management consulting, branding, youth marketing, and government. His expertise in the Millennials segment of consumers and employees has garnered him numerous industry accolades; recognized as Malaysia’s Young Entrepreneur of the Year in 2019 and the No.1 Entry on the List of 100 People You Must Follow on LinkedIn in Malaysia in 2020. He connects with people on LinkedIn & can be reached via his email at michael@thrivingtalents.com 

NATHANIEL THOMAS is a communications strategist with Thriving Talents, an award-winning talent development company in Malaysia, focusing their consulting and training services towards enhancing the Motivation, Productivity & Effectiveness of the Millennials Generation. Nathaniel honed his marketing and communications on several public campaigns & public relations projects, previously with the Ministry of Marketing.Asia, where he worked with leading brands in new customer education and acquisition while promoting CSR works. He is an avid drummer, and he can often be found performing in concerts in the country. However, he dedicates most of his time to charitable events to raise funds for the needy and entertain people.