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Culture, Coaching, Communication – Three Talent Management Strategies to engage with your Millennial Workforce. Part 3: Communication

on October 08, 2015
According to Google's Laszlow Bock, CHROs don't particularly care about millennials themselves, but they are concerned with how their talent management strategies need to evolve and adapt in order to better serve, motivate, and retain this generation of workers. We've already discussed how company culture and communication need to be part of those strategies; now, learn why clear, consistent communication between managers and millennial employees might be the most important component to the engagement puzzle.

Managers matter – listen and communicate

In our second part of this series, we highlighted coaching and feedback. While both of those are examples of communicating, the subject of communication in talent management expands far beyond coaching. Communication starts with the manager. In virtually every industry, today’s managers are extremely challenged. They have direct, individual responsibilities of their own in addition to managing their teams. With organizations running on lean labor strategies and containing labor costs, managers simply don’t have enough time to “manage” their people. This is a huge challenge when managing millennials.

Consider Google’s Project Oxygen, which led to their 8 Simple Rules to Being a Good Manager, a list that laid out the company’s findings on effective management attributes. Pretty high up on the list are caring about the team, and listening and communication. Recent research shows that millennials similarly rank “listens and communicates” as the #1 most important quality they look for in a manager. Managers need to be advisers, advocates and [mentors] for millennials or they will look for opportunities elsewhere.

Company Communication – transparency is a must

“Millennials are pushing organizations hard to be transparent about a lot of things that were kept secret before,” — Josh Bersin

Its clear that communication is critical with millennials, but equally important is this idea of being transparent. In Work Rules, Laszlow Bock highlights Google’s “default to open” strategy. This is one reason why Google is the #1 workplace of choice for millennials, according to a survey by employer branding firm, Universum. Millennials want information. They want to know

Why is transparent communication so important to millennials? One observation is the access they have always had to information. They were basically born with internet access in their hands, and information has always been accessible. Millennials have also dropped the taboo around salary talk. With sites like Glassdoor, salaries are out in the open.

Millennials want clarity around what they’re playing for, an obvious game plan, and a coach who’s available and communicative. Ultimately they want to trust their company by knowing as much as possible, and being a part of the big picture.

What other insights can you glean from these young professionals to inform your talent management strategy? See for yourself in our exclusive research report, "The Digital Generation in the Workplace."


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