The spirit of management for millennials

Leadership is a key factor for success. New challenges are facing us as we now see three generations working together. Jaume Gurt, General Manager at Infojobs, believes in encouraging managers to be more humane and closer to their teams.

Right now, we are at a unique moment in history: for the first time three generations (Baby Boom, Generation X, Millennials)1 are living under the same roof at companies. The different technological and economic surroundings that they have grown up in have allowed each generation to develop a particular approach to life and to the world of work, with its own values, motivating factors and characteristics, forcing us to reinvent ourselves to contain them all and keep them happy.

The last to enter the workplace were the so-called Millennials. Unlike the previous generations, Millennials are more focused on getting the most out of the present moment, making their living doing what they love, and seeking happiness in everything that they do. They trust themselves; they are connected to the world and open to change, since they know that evolving is the key to survival. But what moves them is passion. Millennials want to control their work and their personal life. They are connected thanks to new technologies. They want to develop new ideas and projects, either on their own (entrepreneurs) or inside a company (intraentrepreneurs) and they are 100 per cent more oriented towards people than the previous generation (Generation X).

Putting people at the center

With a new profile that demands a combination of passion, working in something that they like, orientation towards people, being listened to and talking about happiness to work, what are the keys to attracting new talents? How will we be able to keep them with us once they fall in love with our company?

For me the answer is simple: we have to humanize companies, putting people at the center, promoting their humane and professional growth. We have to seek ways to make peoples’ passions into work, making companies into unique places where people come to live and enrich themselves with their co-workers. When we do something that we love, it’s no longer work, time doesn’t matter, motivation and dedication increase, and all of this leads to results that are extraordinary.

Need for flexibility

But the change has only just begun. In the next five years, Generation Z (born after 1994) will start to enter the workplace. Here the difference is a matter of degree with respect to the previous generation. Generation Z wants to work with something that they like (76 per cent compared to 50 per cent among the Millennials). There’s more entrepreneurs (61 per cent declare that they will start their own business if they don’t find the job that they want, a logical consequence of working at something that they like). Generation Z needs flexibility: not having a balance between work and life is not an option for this generation. They are less motivated by money, more interested in growing as people and professionals and even more oriented towards people (60 per cent more than the Millennials). Honesty is the most important quality that leaders need for this generation to follow them, they want to be listened to, to have their ideas taken into consideration, and to participate in decision-making.

This means four generations in the same company!

Contribute unique values

The way is clear: the organizations of the future must be more humane, because in the end this is the only thing that each and every one of these generations have in common.

As leaders we need to balance the abilities needed for developing companies spread out over various generations. We have to work so that all of them can contribute with their unique value in order to take advantage of all of their strengths. Without a doubt, new styles of leadership are necessary to lead these multidisciplinary teams and only leaders who understand them will really be able to mobilize them and to make the most of their potential. Only by encouraging managers to be more humane, closer to their teams, and more authentic than ever will we be able to perform the magic of bringing together different generations.