The look, shape, and culture of the American workforce are constantly changing. But whether you work for a small startup or a major corporation, you want to ensure you’re engaging employees while planning your next meeting. One of the biggest curveballs currently being thrown at office culture is the growing number of Millennials entering the workforce. According to the University of North Carolina Kenan-Flagler Business School, Millennials (also known at Generation Y) will account for 46% of the American workforce by 2020. Because this will potentially translate to roughly half of your employees falling under the “Gen Y” category over the next five years, SuccessfulMeetings.com has a few suggestions to engage a growing demographic with shifting priorities.
“I survived another meeting that could have been an email”
This is perhaps one of the most common utterances made by Millennials in the workplace, but it’s not too late to change the mindset of younger workers. To get started, follow these five tips to create a more “meaningful meeting” and get Millennials coming back for more. 1. Address generational barriers. Recent research from PricewaterhouseCoopers shows that38% of Millennials claim older senior management and company leaders have difficulty relating to them. Eliminating generational gaps can be accomplished by getting employees to let their guard down. Try to pose good, personal questions to the group, such as “What crossroad do you face right now, either at work or in the rest of your life?” You might be surprised by some of the answers. 2. Everyone has a seat at the table. Just because Millennials are younger, doesn’t mean they don’t have good ideas. Senior level employees tend to dominate meetings and inadvertently prevent new employees the chance to shine. Try breaking larger meetings into smaller discussion groups that allow everyone to get their point across. 3. Keep it lively. Nothing makes a Millennial’s eyes glaze over faster than a mundane slideshow. While slideshows are still a very powerful tool, make the presentation more dynamic by posing discussion questions that field feedback from the audience. 4. Don’t be afraid to challenge them. Millennials often get the unfair stamp that they’re lazy, unappreciative and want everything handed to them. However, this couldn’t be further from the truth. Millennials want a challenge, and Deloitte research shows that 28% of Gen Y employees feel their company isn’t tapping into all of their skills. Millennials are remarkably tech savvy and educated so take the time to take their suggestions and hear them out. 5. Bring the gold stars.Millennials respond well to recognition and reward. Take a moment at the end of your next meeting to open up the floor to employees. Give them a chance to recognize peers for their recent accomplishments, both professional and personal. Whether they closed a major deal or ran a marathon, putting the info out there will make a big difference.