Understanding millennials is key to sustainability
They don’t need to consult adults for information or how-to’s. They simply go online and surf or watch video tutorials via YouTube.
They can’t live without their mobile devices, relying on their phones or tablets for many daily living activities.
They are in social contact all the time, but it is challenging for them to personally communicate. They tend to be narcissistic, partly because of how they were brought up.
The good news is they often make money even before getting their college diploma.
Meet the millennials.
“Millennials belong to a generation of firsts. They belong to a generation of people who do not need adults to get information,” motivational speaker and business consultant Francis Kong told businessmen at the Mandaue Business Summit last month.
He illustrated this by citing an experiment involving two teenagers. When seated face to face without mobile devices and asked to talk, the two teens did not talk at all. However, when they were seated facing away from each other, given mobile devices and then instructed to chat, they could not stop “talking.”
Kong said top corporate executives have to understand the millennials because they are the future leaders, game-changers and workforce.
“This is Generation Y workers (millennials) versus Generation X managers. To maintain a sustainable business, you have to understand generation mind-sets,” he said.
He said the current crop of managers are not equipped with the right knowledge to handle Generation Y, causing not only a leadership gap, but widening the skills gap as well.
Millennials will have to be trained not only in terms of values, but also behavior. Like it or not, these workers have the potential to become the future leaders of the company.
It is the management’s responsibility to train the kind of leaders they want to lead the company, Kong said.
Change will have to come from the top leadership first. Top executives must first make a commitment to personal growth and change, said Kong. To do this, companies must look to their company values, vision and mission.
He said companies should adapt to the changing trends not only in the consumer market but in the talent market as well.
With the advent of the Asean integration, Kong said it will become increasingly difficult to acquire talents if the companies continually resist change.
“In this day and age, game-changers are actually expected. But to be a game-changer, you have to first change yourself and your mind-set,” he added.
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