Why Millennials Have Become The Dominant Force in an Ever-Changing Job Market? 28

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This article was written by Angela Baker, a self-driven specialist who is currently working as a freelance writer.

The millennial generation, which ranges from 1882 to 2004, is now between 35 to 13 years old. That means they’re not just one of the most important parts of the job market today. But will be for some time to come as they mature and take on ever more important positions. They’re going to take over all sorts of top-level positions all over the sector.

Millennials Are Now the Largest Labor Force

They the biggest section of the workforce now, as shown on the graph above by Pew Research Center.

In addition, they’re the best equipped to take advantage of the newest technologies. And that makes sense. After all, the younger generations find it easier to adapt to what comes out into the market than those who have been around a while, due to their increased flexibility.

It’s not just that, either. The world place has dramatically changed over the last decades. We move around far more often between different positions, jobs, and companies. This has led some to accuse the millennial generation of being selfish, entitled and disloyal. Of course, that’s hardly fair.

Millennials are naturally reacting to a workplace environment that is changing rapidly and constantly.

And it’s good for them.

What’s more, the more positions millennials hold, the more skills they’re actually going to have. Quite often people who did the same jobs day in and day out have stagnated in their growth and their abilities.

Those people who continuously take on new challenges and learn new things not only have more skills, but it also keeps them mentally flexible and leads to greater brain plasticity. This means that they’re going to find it easier to adapt even within a job and a company as the requirements change.

Even better, they’ll be able to learn new skills and abilities even when they’re older. This means they’ll stay valuable to companies later in life. Which, with the ever rising age of retirement around the world, is most certainly something that is important to them and to businesses.

It also means they’re changing our relationship with jobs.

Saying 'No' at Work: Why, When and How to Do It Nicely letsreachsuccess.com infographic

In previous decades the ball was firmly in the company’s court. And it showed. Most jobs and offices had little to no opportunities for people to relax, build up relationships with colleagues or even visually pleasing dimensions.

Nowadays, companies are dramatically different. In order to retain their employees a lot of companies have dramatically reconsidered how the work environment should be.

They’ve worked hard to create a space that people actually like to be in, whether it be in the Googleplex or in companies that write the best research papers. They also offer all sorts of refreshments, opportunities to interact and other ways that people can enjoy their workplace.

A lot of employees in modern companies are far happier than they were previously.

And this has had some unexpected benefits, including significant boosts in productivity and creativity.

Now, all sorts of experiments are going on in what kinds of relationships there should be between workers and companies. And that all started because of how millennials look at the work place, as well as how millennials are hiring their peers.

More people are finding themselves.

As an added bonus, the fact that millennials are not settling down in one career that they’ll continue to do for their whole lives means that many people are able to keep looking for what truly motivates them for years longer than previous.

After all, people were expected to know what they wanted to do when they were fresh out of school and that was that.

For some of us, this was fantastic. We knew what we wanted. But for most of us, it wasn’t so easy. We didn’t know. We needed much more time to find our way. Unfortunately, that wasn’t available to us.

Now it is. And that means there is more time for people to find out what they’re actually good at. Of course, some people take it too far. They switch when the going gets tough and therefore never get going – but then everything has its downside.

And the upside, of having a generation find its way through to a job that gives them fulfillment, is a big one indeed.  

We ain’t seen nothing yet.

As the millennial generation continues to grow in importance and confidence, we should see further transformations in the workforce which we can’t even imagine now. That’s because many of the millennials have yet to enter the workplace or have only just begun. They’re going to work out new ways to interact with their companies.

Another force that’s going to lead to all sorts of changes is obviously the technological innovations going on. This will allow us to reconsider how and where the work environment should be.

So not only has the millennial become the dominant force in the modern workforce. Their influence (and the change they will wreak) will without doubt grow for at least a decade more.

I wonder what their future will bring?

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The Five Elements of Flawless Customer Experience 10

The Five Elements of Flawless Customer Experience

Providing a flawless customer experience is the ultimate goal for any business.

There’s a lot that goes into creating a customer experience that keeps your clients coming back for more. In fact, there’s so much involved that it can almost seem overwhelming.

However, providing a flawless customer experience becomes much easier when you approach the task through these five distinct elements:

Time
Understanding
Ownership of Emotions
The Unexpected
Follow-Through

Time

When it comes to your customers’ satisfaction, time is essential. Think of how a great experience at a new restaurant quickly sours if you’re left waiting for your food to arrive. Think of how your excitement over a great department store sale turns into frustration as you stand in line for what seems like hours.

Time is your most valuable resource and it is up to you to make sure you’re using your customers’ time wisely.

This is why restaurants have comfortable waiting areas with drinks and appetizers, or why airports have lounges with restaurants, shops, and even bars.

If your customers are being forced to wait for a service, make them feel as if their time spent is not wasted. The more positive drivers you offer customers, the less likely they are to grow dissatisfied with their experience.

Think of how you can implement this in your own business. Are there places where you can help fill customers’ time? Are there places where technology can be used to cut down on the time it takes to complete a task? Remember, it’s the customers’ time that should be valued, not your own.

Understanding

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You must understand what your customers want, when they want it, and how.

While this may seem daunting, getting a better understanding of your customers doesn’t take millions of dollars, complex data analytics, and a degree in psychology. Instead, all it takes is a simple look. Watch their process, engage with them, ask them questions, and listen to them.  

How are customers interacting with your product? What’s the first thing they do when they enter your store? What’s the last thing they do before they leave? How long are they spending in each department? Do you notice anything that hampers their experience?

Take a look at your competitors. How are your potential customers interacting with them? What does this business offer that you don’t or vice versa? What is your, as Harvard Business School professor Clayton M. Christensen says, “job to be done?” What are your customers hiring your product or service to accomplish? Understand why your users are turning to your products.

Ownership of Emotions

Many companies have already taken hold of their customers’ emotions, though cynically. Subliminal advertising is a key example. However, the ownership of emotions does not have to be cynical. When used correctly, it can be the “holy grail” for companies.

Owning emotions begins with the aforementioned ability to understand. When you truly understand a customer’s choices and then act to make the experience better, you’re building a relationship of trust. That trust is the foundation of emotional ownership.

One way to build this trust is to reduce the “emotional” noise that surrounds your customers. Let them know that, even on their worst day, your business or product is there for them and that it will be a constant in their lives.

Think of restaurants and the long wait times you have to endure when they’re busy. Think of how angry—or “hangry”—you feel as you stand around, waiting for your table, and listening to your stomach growl. However, think of how some restaurants are able to reduce that emotional noise by serving you finger foods and drinks as you wait.

Also, seek to understand what emotionally motivates your customers.

Why should they be motivated to visit your store or use your product? To feel confident? Free? Unique? Secure? Successful? Research shows that all human beings are motivated by one of those factors.

The Unexpected

Experiences become stronger and more memorable when they’re accompanied by an element of surprise. Surprise can be addictive, which will only keep your customers coming back for more.

Think about mailing your customers or clients small packages with gifts and swag. Everyone loves to get mail and everyone loves free stuff, especially when it’s least expected.

A surprise doesn’t have to be a huge flash mob (though it could be!). Hand out snacks at your store. Is it a cold day? Give your customers hot chocolate or warm punch. Is it a client’s birthday? Send a card! Even a small note of thanks for a customer’s business is a nice little surprise.

The most important thing to remember: simply be sincere and don’t become predictable. Chocolates on hotel pillows were once a great surprise for guests. However, now that their wow-factor has faded, hotels are continuously trying to get back to the “unexpected.”

Follow-Through

You’ve made promises and established goals. The only thing that’s left is to follow through on them. This starts with creating your mission statement, one that you, your employees, and your customers can commit to it. This will define your customer experience.

Your mission statement must promise to impact yourself/your business, the community, or the world. It may commit to impacting one, or all three. However, whatever it promises, you must follow through on. Your customers’ trust, and thus their experience, depends on it.

More about these five elements can be discovered in Unforgettable: Designing Customer Experiences that Stick, to be published in 2018.

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Kyle H. David has made a career in technology and entrepreneurship for nearly 20 years. In 2001, he formed The Kyle David Group, now KDG. Over the past 16 years, KDG has grown at a rapid pace, attracting clients ranging from the United States Senate to major financial institutions, international nonprofits, and Division I universities.