Mastering Millennial Management

Millennials are narcissistic and entitled. Lazy. Compulsive job-hoppers.


Managing millennials based on negative stereotypes like these is dangerous – especially when you consider that, by 2020, 46% of all U.S. workers will be millennials.

A better approach? To harness the power of millennial workers, tweak your management style to accentuate the positive. Start with these practical tips:

Appreciate where they’re coming from.

Born between 1980 and 1995, millennials’ worldview has been shaped by mobile technology and the Great Recession. They live online as much as they do offline, and they see change as a way of life.

Offer the feedback they crave.

While confident and self-directed, younger workers prefer ample, immediate feedback about their performance. Supplement formal performance reviews with frequent, informal advice to provide the reassurance they need and help them “course correct” when necessary.

Show them how their work matters.

On the whole, 20- and 30-year olds seek meaning in their work, so connect the dots for them. Help them understand the impact of their work on the organization, the community and the world. Providing this big-picture perspective improves both motivation and employer loyalty in this demographic.


True, listening is important to effectively manage employees of all ages – but open ears are especially important to Gen Y. Having grown up with attentive parents who scheduled their lives around them, millennials are accustomed to having their ideas and opinions matter. Maintain an open-door policy, solicit their input and take their ideas seriously to get the most from this generation.

Make retention efforts a priority.

Exceptionally change-tolerant, millennials expect to make many job switches throughout their careers. So, in an economy where talented people have abundant job options, you need to make millennial retention a key management priority. During performance reviews, create clear, 3-to-5-year career paths that challenge Gen Y workers, satisfy their professional needs and keep them motivated to perform for you. Pair high-potential millennials with mentors to accelerate their growth within your organization. When younger workers have a bright future within your organization, they’re less likely to seek opportunities elsewhere.

Accommodate their need for flexibility.

According to Ernst & Young survey results, millennials highly value flexible work arrangements, and they are willing to relocate or pass on raises and promotions to better balance their work and personal lives. Offer the flexible work arrangements these employees crave by providing options such as flexible shift start/stop times, compressed work weeks and schedule rotations.

Need dynamic, change-tolerant, hard-working people?

Contact your local PrideStaff office today. With a national network of offices and proven recruiting strategies, we can quickly connect you with the best talent from every generation.