Monday, February 4, 2019
Millennials Workplace Expert Interviewed About His Upcoming Book
What is the best way companies can recruit, retain, and motivate Millennials in the workplace?
Millennials, the world’s largest generation, will make up 75% of the workforce by 2030. A new book, The Millennial Whisperer (Morgan James Publishing, 182 pages, $24.95, Hardcover, ISBN: 978-1642792799, February 12, 2019), by 38-year-old ad executive Chris Tuff, provides practical strategies that are real-world tested and research-based. He shows companies how to improve culture and morale while increasing profitability.
Tuff knows what it takes to succeed in the workplace and manage Millennials. He became the youngest to make partner at the century-old advertising agency, 22squared.
Tuff’s book bridges gaps in communication between Millennials and the rest of the workforce.
He is interviewed below about his new book, which is being promoted by Media Connect:
what inspired you to pen your debut book, The Millennial Whisperer? On an executive men’s retreat in North
Georgia, I introduced myself by saying “I’m kind of like the Millennial
whisperer at my firm…” This prompted a Q&A session between the executives
and me about how I did it. When I sat back down, the guy leading the retreat,
Tommy Breedlove, turned to me and said “You better write that book!” For the
next two weeks, I wrote down all the strategies and pulled together the best
and latest research on leading a very misunderstood generation well. It quickly
became my calling to help transform the workplace for all generations.
exactly is a “Millennial Whisperer”? A Millennial Whisperer is someone who understands how to
attract and motivate the Millennial generation. A true Millennial Whisperer can
attract and motivate Millennials without throwing a pile of money at them or
replacing your conference table with a ping pong table. A Millennial Whisperer
is someone who understands and can implement the little things that make a big
difference. I wrote the book with this goal in mind—the book needed to be a
painkiller, not a vitamin. 99% of business books are vitamins. They give you a
quick boost but the moment you are done with the book, the pain returns. Not
how does one motivate the world’s largest generation that is scheduled to be
75% of the U.S. workforce in 2030? Most organizations still
function the same way they did twenty years ago. But Millennials and most
leaders have undergone dramatic changes during that time. From technology to
the Great Recession, and everything in between, the world is different now than
it was. For example, millennials crave inspirational leaders, have zero
tolerance for hypocrisy, and want transparency. We leaders must bring
inspiration to the workplace, be honest with what we do, and be human with our
Millennial team members. That costs nothing but will achieve a quick return in productivity
and culture improvement.
are some of the myths you debunk about Millennials? After
reading the book, a friend of mine called me and said he thinks he got it.
“Millennials aren’t the problem, they just expose the problems.” It is true. Millennials
are not the lazy, entitled, avocado-eating, pessimists they are held out to be.
Some are, just like some other people are lazy, entitled, avocado-eating
pessimists. But you can implement simple strategies to attract the best ones,
inspire and motivate them to produce, and incentivize them in ways that are
profitable to you and effective with them. If companies want to keep up they
MUST learn how to motivate this generation instead of just calling them needy.
They must embrace and empower this generation.
how can business leaders and managers harness the strengths of Millennials? This group is innately entrepreneurial,
innovative, and resourceful. Build up your team members to be problem solvers.
Share the purpose of their work and the vision for your team, department, and
company. Give them parameters within which to work but give them autonomy
within structure. If we give them a checklist of exact steps with every task,
they will end up like call center operators who do not know what to do outside
of their script. For example, in the book I suggest “building hallways, not
train tracks.” In other words, build walls around them so they cannot veer too
far off course but leads them in the direction you need them to go.
say that Millennials care less about titles and financial rewards at work. So what’s important to them – and do you help
motivate them at the office? Financial rewards, culture, and work flexibility are their
three most important drivers. That is not much different than older
generations. But they care about much more than that, partly because of their
experiences and life stage. Millennials come out of college with tens of
thousands of dollars in debt. The reality of their situation is they have so
much debt they cannot wait until it’s gone to enjoy life. So they want to enjoy
their life and work now, even if it means delaying paying down their debt. We
can help them achieve that by leading with both inspiration and order, even it
takes having two leaders in regular contact with them, one inspirational and
one organizational by nature. This creates an engaging environment with
you share some best practices for recruiting and hiring Millennials? First, define your organizational purpose
and what makes your company unique from a culture perspective. This sets you
apart from your competition and helps you communicate to people what you
contributing to the world as a whole. Second, build a culture that makes
Millennials want to work with you. Demonstrate that culture inside your company
as well as through how you present yourself online where Millennials can see
them. Third, make recruiting a year-round focus. Instead of waiting for
positions to open to fill them, empower team members to look for people who fit
your organizational purpose and culture and refer them to you year round. Get
to know those candidates over time. This makes you much more proactive with
your recruitment to identify the best fits. Finally, involve your team members
in the selection and courtship process.
type of culture helps Millennials thrive? Companies need a defined culture and it is much more than
throwing a ping pong table in the corner. Culture is defined by those who live
it every day. Involve key employees in the process of defining your culture.
Culture will evolve over time but starting by rewarding inclusion, diversity,
creativity, honesty, accountability, acknowledgment, and collaboration will
begin to help Millennials thrive. At our company, 22squared, the easiest way to
define our culture is to point out the hashtag #22culture on social media. You
will find more than 3,000 posts from employees expressing what the culture
means to them.
do you say Millennials need purpose, profit, and acknowledgment? This
group grew up with social media at their fingertips. Many had helicopter
parents. That’s right, we can blame ourselves in many cases when we complain
about this generation. We encouraged them to pursue their dreams. We gave them
constant feedback. We encouraged them to pursue career paths that involved tens
of thousands of dollars in debt. They need purpose because they grew up with
parents who encouraged them to pursue their dreams. They need acknowledgment
because with social media and constant parental and educational feedback, they
have become conditioned to it. And they need profit for many of the same
reasons we all do, only they start with thousands of dollars in debt that many
from older generations did not have.
also say leaders should “hero their people.”
How does one do this? We must build our people up! This comes in the form of
“heroing” your people publicly and behind closed doors. You make them the
heroes. And you are the guide who helps them by giving them the inspiration and
resources to do their best work. For example, instead of traditional status
meetings, my team and I go around the room offering praise for help on
projects. A team member will openly thank another team member for help on the
project. We then briefly discuss the project and move onto the next person.
Thirty minutes or so later, we have collected all the information we would
normally have from a status meeting but everyone walks out a hero.
For more information, please consult: www.themillennialwhisperer.com
Brian Feinblum’s insightful views, provocative opinions, and interesting ideas expressed in this terrific blog are his alone and not that of his employer or anyone else. You can – and should -- follow him on Twitter @theprexpert and email him at email@example.com. He feels much more important when discussed in the third-person. This is copyrighted by BookMarketingBuzzBlog ©2019. Born and raised in Brooklyn, he now resides in Westchester. His writings are often featured in The Writer and IBPA’s Independent. This was named one of the best book marketing blogs by Book Baby http://blog.bookbaby.com/2013/09/the-best-book-marketing-blogs and recognized by Feedspot in 2018 as one of the top book marketing blogs. Also named by WinningWriters.com as a "best resource.” He recently hosted a panel on book publicity for Book Expo America.