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The Importance of Employee Reviews for Millennials

Published: November 6, 2013 Author: Clearpoint Tags: Manager's Corner, Uncategorized, Working and Workplaces

Millennials, also known as Generation Y or Gen Y, are a rising force in business. By 2020, this generation will represent 50 percent of the workforce in the United States--and by 2030, they'll dominate the global workforce and occupy 75 percent of jobs in the world. This is more than enough reason for companies to sit up and take notice: Millennials are here to stay.

Some managers and executives view Gen Y workers as a challenge. They think differently, work differently, and act differently than employees in other age groups. The mindsets of millennials and boomers are miles apart, and Gen Y's apparent refusal to "conform" has given this generation a less-than-stellar reputation.

The fact is, millennials can be a valuable addition to your workplace--and it doesn't have to be difficult to accommodate them. One way to help millennials fit in and increase their productivity is to reconsider your employee review policy.

The tradition: Formal reviews, few and far between

For many companies, employee reviews follow a distinct pattern that has been used for generations. The annual, bi-annual, or quarterly review is practically a tradition--usually accompanied by a lot of paperwork, office disruption, and unhappy management staff who have to plow through piles of employee records.

These types of employee review policies, while widely accepted, may not be the best strategies for encouraging performance. And for millennials, infrequent formal reviews are not enough.

The expectation: Regular feedback, casual delivery

Millennials crave feedback. Older generations may attribute this to the "age of instant gratification," but most of the time it's a simple matter of desiring transparency and wanting to know whether they're doing a good job--or whether they should change what they're doing to reach "good job" status.

While a few Gen Y-ers may have an inflated sense of entitlement, that's true for any age group. For the most part, they simply want to know that their performance on the job is not only effective, but appreciated. And they don't need a long, formal review process to tell them that.

The solution: What you should be doing anyway

Regardless of the particular demographics of your employees, everyone appreciates feedback. Offering regular praise and favorable comments is a proven way to increase overall productivity, employee satisfaction, and workplace morale.

You don't have to transform your entire organizational policy or invest your budget in salary increases and perks to provide steady feedback for millennials (and everyone else on your workforce). Just a few simple changes can make a tremendous impact. Consider:

  • Weekly update meetings. By meeting for a short time once a week--or twice a week, if you can swing it--with your staff, you can both provide and obtain valuable feedback that will help your company improve.
  • Mentor programs. Senior management may not have enough time to provide substantial feedback to employees. By establishing mentor programs within your departments or teams, you can pair millennials with more experienced staff who will provide the feedback they need--and both parties will benefit.
  • Team building. Millennials are into collaboration. Many believe that teams see better results than individual workers. By organizing your employees into groups to take on projects, you can encourage internal team feedback that will satisfy the millennials' drive for responses.
  • Say 'thank you'. In just about any situation, a simple thank-you goes a long way. When managers are in the habit of frequently saying "thanks for the great work" to millennials and other employees, the entire corporate environment is elevated.

The more appreciated and confident millennials feel, the harder they'll work to continue doing a good job. Incorporate these feedback strategies into your company's day-to-day operations, and end the perceived challenge of working with Generation Y. If you are looking for staffing agencies in Houston, contact us today.

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